Learning how to cook can be intimidating, but learning how to cook when you’re trying to lose weight can seem impossible. Easy and Healthy Ways to Prepare Fresh Vegetables is an approachable, easy to read book that instructs readers how to peel, prepare and preserve your favorite produce.
Co-authors Arnold Weislo and Annabelle Delaval decided to write the book after a trip to their town market where Weislo watched his friend, an excellent cook, choose vegetables for a pasta dish that he would prepare.
“When I saw him choose the vegetables while I was buying pasta, it bugged me slightly. And I wanted to do like him: be able to choose vegetables and most of all, be able to cook them afterwards,” said Weislo.
With plenty of photographs to help guide readers through the steps of cooking with popular vegetables, the book addresses nutritional qualities, health benefits, peak seasonal information and recipes, like Tomato and Goat Cheese Tart, for 20 vegetables.
Not only does the book offer general tips for preparing fruits and vegetables, but it provides insight on how to clean, cut and prepare some of the trickiest types of produce.
Fennel: With it’s long, leafy stems and bulbous flesh, fennel can be an intimidating purchase from the grocery store or farmer’s market. Fresh, high-quality fennel should be smooth, white and firm without any dark spots. Store in a cool, dry place for up to one week for optimal freshness. Use it to try this Roasted Fennel recipe.
Celery Root: Also known as celeriac, celery root is cousin to anise, carrots, parsley and parsnips. Fresh celery root is heavy and firm and makes a perfect non-starch addition or complement to potatoes in a winter meal. Try A Spicy Perspective’s Apple & Celery Root Gratin with milk instead of heavy cream.
Turnips: High in fiber and low in calories, turnips can be roasted, stuffed, baked or peeled and sliced thin for a crunchy raw salad. Look for turnips that are smooth, firm and heavy and avoid turnips that feel spongy or fibrous to the touch. Try Mashed Turnips & Potatoes.
Leeks: Low in fat and high in vitamins and minerals leeks are native to the Mediterranean region of Europe and can be frozen after blanching for easy storage. Leeks have a diuretic effect and are said to help aid digestion. Try Sea Bass with Leeks.
What are your favorite ways to prepare seasonal vegetables?