This month's featured Vegetable is Asparagus
Health and Nutrition go hand in hand
Eating a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables and getting daily physical activity can help you and your family stay healthy, feel good, and may lower the risk of serious health problems like obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and certain types of cancer.
Why eat Asparagus?
Six large asparagus spears are equal to about one cup of vegetables. One cup of asparagus is an excellent source of vitamin A and vitamin K.
Why are Vitamin A and Vitamin K beneficial?
Vitamin A helps maintain good vision, fight infection, and keeps skin healthy.
Vitamin K helps stop cuts and scrapes from bleeding too much and starts the healing process.
Recommended Daily Amounts of Fruits and Vegetables*
*If you are active, eat the higher number of cups per day. Visit www.mypyramid.gov to learn more.
||Kids, Ages 5-12
||Teens and Adults,Ages 13 and up
||2½ - 5 cups per day
||4½ - 6½ cups per day
||2½ - 5 cups per day
||3½ - 5 cups per day>
- Look for firm, bright green stalks with tightly closed tips.
- Wrap the bottoms of the asparagus stalks in a damp paper towel and place in a plastic bag. Store asparagus in the refrigerator for up to three days.
- Make sure asparagus tips stay dry during storage.
- Wash asparagus in cold water
Helping Your Child Eat Healthy
- Bake, grill, boil, steam, microwave or stir-fry asparagus spears
- Add cooked asparagus to soups and salads
- Dip raw or lightly cooked asparagus spears in lowfat vegetable dressing
- Help your child find a healthy recipe with asparagus. Then cook it together
- Remind your child to eat breakfast every day to stay focused in school
Let’s Get Physical!
Use physical activity to help deal with stress. Take a walk with someone you can talk to or just clear your mind while you enjoy your favorite activity.
Be Creative in the Kitchen!
Find ways to incorporate asparagus into your meals.
- Boil asparagus in a small amount of water until tender. Add black pepper and lemon juice. For an extra kick, add red pepper flakes.
- Roast chopped asparagus, mushrooms, eggplant, carrots, and zucchini with one cup of chicken broth at 350°F for 30 minutes.
- Add asparagus to your favorite stir-fry meal.
Asparagus Frittata with Red Bell Peppers
1 lb. California asparagus, trimmed and blanched
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 cup onion, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
8 eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons Italian parsley, chopped
¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
4 oz. Feta cheese, crumbled (about 1 cup)
Fat free cooking spray
1) Reserve 6 asparagus spears. Cut remaining asparagus at an angle into1-inch pieces, reserve.
2) Sauté bell pepper in 2 tablespoons olive oil until soft, but not browned, about 7 minutes. Stir in onion and reserved asparagus pieces; sauté for 1 minute. With a slotted spoon remove vegetables to drain on paper toweling, reserve.
3) Whisk chopped parsley and pepper into beaten eggs. Stir in cheese and reserved sautéed vegetables. Coat the inside of a heavy, non-stick 12-inch frying pan (with a cover) with the fat free cooking spray. Pour egg mixture into pan.
4) Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven, covered, until eggs are just firm, about 35 minutes
Remove cover; bake until top is lightly browned, about 10 minutes.
5) Cut frittata into 6 wedges; garnish each with 1 reserved asparagus spear. Divide wedges among 6 serving plates, then put a lemon wedge and a sprig of parsley on each plate.
*Use a cheese planer or a potato peeler to shave cheese paper thin.
Roasted Vegetable Medley (Click for PDF)
Bring harmony to your taste buds with this fresh vegetable dish. Add a
Southern flair by serving over grits!
1 cup chopped baby carrots
1 cup chopped eggplant
1 cup chopped asparagus
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
4 teaspoons dried basil
1 cup chopped mushrooms
1 small zucchini, chopped
1. Place an oven rack on the bottom of the oven. Preheat oven
2. Spray a roasting pan with nonstick cooking spray.
3. Add carrots, eggplant, and asparagus to the pan. Drizzle with
vegetable oil and toss until vegetables are lightly coated.
4. Bake for 20 minutes.
5. Spray a large pan with nonstick cooking spray and heat over
6. Sauté garlic and basil for about 2 minutes.
7. Add mushrooms and zucchini and sauté until vegetables are tender,
about 5 minutes.
8. Add roasted vegetables to the pan and sauté 5 minutes more.
Makes 4 servings. 1 cup per serving.
Prep time: 15 minutes Cook time: 35 minutes
For more healthy recipes visit Champions for Change