March’s Seasonal Vegetables Help You Heal

March's seasonal vegetables | Artichoke Pesto Burrata Pizza Arugula recipe | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Half Baked Harvest | Recipe: Artichoke Pesto and Burrata Pizza with Lemony Arugula

One of the best things you can do for your body is to eat more vegetables.  March’s seasonal vegetables contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that help you heal.  We will be focusing on the veggies that are harvested each month so you can start building your recipe file.  This makes grocery shopping more fun and will give your menus more variety. You will look forward to farmer’s markets each month and your body will thank you for the nutrients of local produce!

March's seasonal vegetables | Broccoli Caesar salad vegan recipe | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Kitchn | Recipe: Broccoli Caesar Salad with Vegan Caesar Dressing

Spring Into March’s Seasonal Vegetables

Broccoli and kale are still in season from last monthNow that it’s getting warmer, consider enjoying Marche’s seasonal vegetables in salads.  Add cannellini beans, capers, and cashews to make a lunch that is anything but boring. Both broccoli and kale are rich in Vitamin C and K.  They are a low-glycemic way to boost your immune system and help with wound healing. Great post-surgery veggies!

For the croutons and salad:
4 ounces stale bread (about 1/2 medium baguette)
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Kosher salt
1 large head broccoli (about 1 pound), cut into florets
6 small cloves garlic, unpeeled
1 medium bunch kale (about 12 ounces), stems removed and leaves coarsely torn
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup tightly packed fresh parsley leaves, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup toasted sunflower seeds

For the dressing:
1 cup cashews, soaked in 1 cup of boiling water for 2 to 8 hours
3/4 cup low-sodium vegetable broth or water
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons capers
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Click here for full recipe and instructions.  This hearty vegan salad uses a velvety Caesar dressing that is super delicious.  We also love homemade croutons. They are very easy to make and are also the perfect remedy for stale bread.

March's seasonal vegetables | roasted artichokes healthy recipe panko parmesan | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Dash of Savory | Recipe: Roasted Artichokes

Finger Food Fun

This month, get on board with artichokes!  Artichokes introduce the fun of finger foods to March’s seasonal vegetables.  A medium artichoke contains 20—25% of what your body needs daily of fiber, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, and Folate.  They are also one of the richest sources of antioxidants of all vegetables. You can easily steam them and serve them with butter. 

Ingredients:
1 whole Artichoke, trimmed and cut in half
1 whole Lemon, juiced
1 cup Chicken Stock
3 cloves Garlic, chopped
Olive Oil, for drizzling
Kosher Salt, for seasoning
2 tablespoons Butter
1/4 cup Panko
2 tablespoons Parmesan, grated
Maldon Sea Salt, for seasoning
Parsley, chopped for garnish

Click here for full recipe and instructions.  The crunchy panko and salty parmesan make it the perfecta appetizer for any meal. Make sure to use a paring knife to cut out the fuzzy center.  The heart is the best part so keep that in there!

March's seasonal vegetables | crustless quiche asparagus leek feta cheese low-carb vegetarian healthy breakfast | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: The Real Food Dietitians | Recipe: Crustless Asparagus, Leek & Feta Quiche

Say it With Quiche

An omelet or quiche comes in handy when you’re looking for a creative way to add veggies to your breakfastThis crustless recipe takes the carb-factor out of eating March’s seasonal vegetables as a quiche. Normally we would protest but the combination of asparagus, leeks, and feta cheese kept us satisfied.  In addition to Vitamins A, C, and K, leeks contain a hearty dose of iron and manganese. They are very good at fighting inflammation and help protect against muscle damage and pain. Another good post-surgery veggie from the onion group.

Ingredients:
2 tsp. Organic Valley Butter or Ghee
½ lb. asparagus, ends trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces
1 leek, end and dark green top removed and white to light green parts roughly chopped (about 2 cups)*
3 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup Organic Valley Feta Cheese, crumbled
8 Organic Valley Whole Eggs
2/3 cup Organic Valley Grassmilk
¼ tsp. sea salt
¼ tsp. ground pepper
Optional: fresh dill, chives or parsley

Click here for full recipe and instructions.  We love the simplicity of this 6-ingredient recipe that takes only 15-20 minutes to prep.  It’s terrific leftover and is delightful with the addition of fresh herbs.

March's seasonal vegetables | roasted carrots fennel chickpeas vegetarian | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Donna Hay | Recipe: Honey Fennel Carrots With Crispy Chickpeas

Show Them You Car-rot

Sometimes, the best way to change things up is to try different varieties of a certain vegetable.  Carrots may seem like the least exciting of March’s seasonal vegetables if you’ve never tried their many varieties.  Carrots are divided into categories based on their shape. They can be red, orange, or purple and contain antioxidants that ward off disease.  (And yes, they really do help to improve eyesight, see?)

Ingredients:
2 bunches Dutch carrots (750g), scrubbed and trimmed
2 t. fennel seeds
2 t. sumac, plus extra to serve
sea salt and cracked black pepper
2 T. extra-virgin olive oil
1 head garlic, halved crossways
400g can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
1/2 cup (140g) lane (yoghurt cheese)
1 pomegranate, seeds removed
1 T. honey
red vein sorrel, to serve

Click here for full recipe and instructions.  We’re no strangers to roasting vegetables, so we got super excited about introducing fennel and chickpeas into the mix!  This recipe calls for Dutch carrots, which are a type of carrot that is sold before it reaches maturity. Fun facts!

March's seasonal vegetables | pizza cauliflower crust gluten-free vegetarian low-carb keto | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Downshiftology | Recipe: Cauliflower Crust Pizza

Best Find of 2020

One of our favorite finds for 2020 is gluten-free pizza crust alternatives.  Use March’s seasonal vegetables as a foundation for all of your favorite pizza toppings.  The end result is pizza you can pig out on that contributes to your vitamin intake without triggering insulin.  You can make your own crust or buy a favorite veggie crust from Trader Joe’s. They have both cauliflower and broccoli/kale versions which we like equally.

Ingredients:
1.5 pounds cauliflower, florets
1/2 cup shredded cheese, or 1/3 cup soft cheese
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
salt and pepper, to taste

Click here for full recipe and instructions.  This recipe is low-carb, gluten-free, and keto.  You can freeze the crust for later or make an easy dinner with your choice of cheese and toppings.  Crusts stay good in the freezer for up to 3 months.

March's seasonal vegetables | St. Patrick's Day recipe Guinness beer beef stew dumplings carrots celery turnips parsnips | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Garden & Table | Recipe: Guinness Beef Stew with Cheddar Herb Dumplings

St. Patricks (Cheat) Day

With St. Patrick’s Day around the corner, we couldn’t resist a yummy vegetable beef stew. (See our recipe for Vegetable Beef Soup if you love a hearty soup!)  Combine the humblest of March’s seasonal vegetables into a stew simmered with Guinness beer. Root vegetables like carrots, turnips, and parsnips get a total makeover that is Irish-approved!  All 3 vegetables are rich in antioxidants and are loaded with fiber. They also add to your carb content, so chef, beware.

For the Stew:
2 lbs stew meat / beef chunk
¼ lb applewood-smoked bacon
1 onion, finely chopped
1 stick celery, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2 turnips, peeled and diced
2 parsnips, diced
4 oz tomato paste
12 oz Guinness extra stout
4 cups low sodium beef broth
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 bay leaf
3 sprigs thyme
Chopped parsley
½ lb cremini mushrooms, sliced

For the Cheddar Herb Dumplings:
1 ½ cups self-rising flour
½ tsp garlic powder
¼ cup shortening
½ cup shredded sharp cheddar
⅔ cup milk
1-2 tablespoons mixed fresh herbs, chopped

Click here for full recipe and instructions.  The combination of beer, bacon, and cheddar herb dumplings make this dish a pot of gold!  It takes about 25 minutes to prep and 1 hour 45 minutes to cook so it’s a good one for Saturday or Sunday.

March's seasonal vegetables | Mexican roasted veggie bowl beer beans Brussels sprouts sweet potatoes cabbage recipe | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: The Bojon Gourmet | Recipe: Mexican Roasted Veggie Bowls with Beer Beans

March Harvest

If you’re not feeling great or are in a state of healing, add a few veggies to your diet. March’s seasonal vegetables are: artichokes, asparagus, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, kale, leeks, lettuce, potatoes, rutabaga, and turnips.  Enjoy these recipes and stay tuned for next month’s batch of vegetables to try.

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