Thursday, February 24, 2011

Great Grain!

by Kris Pitcher

You know I am not friends with carbs...I am after all "carb sensitive" (stick-out-tongue face). But I certainly don't expect the rest of the world to give up grains. If you're in a rut over the same old brown rice here's something you might like to try.

Polenta is a great grain made from corn. It's either going to be made from white or yellow corn, and ground coarse or fine. It's gluten free - because it's made from CORN. It's a traditional Italian staple in certain regions and is a really versatile grain. It has a consistency like porridge when it's hot, and as it cools it can be cut into cubes or name it. It is rich in vitamins A & C, contains fiber and some iron.

Simple Polenta:
3 C water
1 C polenta

Bring water to a boil. Reduce to a simmer. Pour polenta in steadily, stirring constantly. Continue to stir until polenta is thickened. It should come away from the pan, and will support the weight of your spoon. It can take from 20-50 minutes. Pour onto a wooden cutting board and let it stand for a few minutes. Makes four servings.

Nutrition per 1/2 C: 102 calories/2 grams protein/22 grams carbs/1/2 gram of fat

You can dress it up for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Add your favorite things ranging from fresh herbs and spices, to well...cheese and bacon. Just remember the more yummy stuff you add, the more you up the nutritional value.

There's no reason to feel stuck in a rut over your eating. Trying new things is an adventurous way to keep things fresh. Just do the math to make your exchanges...oh and don't make polenta the day after your arm and shoulder workout. Just a tip!

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