Autumn Squash & Rice Salad By Neleta Winter
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Did you know that Seasonal vegetables and fruit contain higher concentrated amounts of nutrients and can actually help to support our health and wellbeing by providing the nutrients our body needs during different times of the year.
As the temperate drops and there’s the increase in risk of colds and flus, we need to be eating foods that nourish us from the inside, strengthen our immune system, boost our energy levels and make us feel well and energised.
Root vegetables such Squash, pumpkin, carrots and beetroot are packed with Vitamin A and C which are potent antioxidants that can help to support our immune system.
Autumn squash contains Vitamin A which has been shown to support the immune system as well as Vitamin C that can help to increase white blood cell production and help immune cells work more effectively.
Leafy greens such as kale and cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower are also available in September And they both contain high levels of vitamin C, which not only packs a powerful antioxidant punch, it helps fight off infection and regenerate other antioxidants in the body, including vitamin E.
All these seasonal vegetables and fruit contain an abundant amount of fibre which can will ultimately support our gut health.
You see fibre feeds the good bacteria within our gut which allows them to produce Short Chain Fatty Acids.
Short Chain fatty acids are produced when the friendly gut bacteria ferments fibre in your colon, and is the main source of energy for the cells lining your colon and they are also involved in the metabolism of important nutrients like carbohydrates and fats.
Did you know that up to 70% of our immune system is found in our gut…so feeding our gut with nourishing foods that will support the good bacteria, provide fibre to help produce short chain fatty acids will actually help to support our immune system.
Chickpeas are not only amazing plant based sources of protein but they also contain high amounts of fibre which we know can help to support our gut health as well as being packed with nutrients such as magnesium and iron.
- 1/2 cup Wholegrain brown rice
- 1 squash
- 1/2 broccoli head
- 1/2 cauliflower head
- 1 small tin of chickpeas
- 1/3 bag of Spinach leaves
- 1 tbsp tahini
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Homemade pesto
- Cook the brown rice per the packet instructions
- Cut the squash into segments and cut the cauliflower into smaller florets and place in an over proof dish and drizzle over some olive oil and salt and pop into the oven to bake until nicely cooked through
- Gently steam the broccoli until al dente!
- In a pan over a medium heat and add some olive oil along with some delicious spices such as baharat or ras el hanout and add in the chickpeas with some salt and cook until warmed through.
- In a bowl add the spinach leaves along with the tahini, extra virgin olive oil and salt and massage into all the leaves!
Add a few tbsp pesto to the cooked brown rice and stir through until nicely coated
Top the spinach leaves with the brown rice, followed by the squash, cauliflower, broccoli, and the spiced chickpeas and some sweet pomegranate seeds