Flavor Your Diabetes Diet With Fall’s Interesting Veggies
It’s officially fall and the perfect time to change-up your low glycemic diet with in-season vegetables.
Eating the season’s foods allows us to enjoy produce when it is the most flavorful, and economical. By partaking of seasonal bounty we also consume a wide variety of nutrients, and keep our meals interesting.
Here are four in-season, interesting, but less familiar veggies you may want to enjoy this fall.
Kohlrabi, sometimes called a cabbage turnip, can be eaten raw or cooked—and the leaves can be prepared like collard greens. The flavor of this veggie is a cross between cucumber and mild broccoli. It is fat free, low in calories and sodium, and loaded with fiber, and vitamin C.
Kohlrabi bulbs come in shades of purple or green, with white flesh. Shop for firm kohlrabi globes that are heavy for their size, and free from cracks and bruises. The washed leaves last about three days when refrigerated (wrap in paper towels/plastic bag). The globes keep up to ten days in the fridge; wash before using.
Ong Choy Spinach
Also called river or water spinach, ong choy is an excellent source of vitamins A and C, plus calcium and iron. It is typically used in southeast Asian dishes. For a quick meal stir-fry some ong choy with a medley of other veggies, bean curd, garlic, and chiles.
Look for green, crisp stems and moist green leaves; avoid leaves that are bruised, dry, or dark. Wrap ong choy in damp paper towels, put in an airtight container, and refrigerate; it will keep for a day or two.
All the parts of dumpling squash are edible, including the tender shoots and leaves which can be added to stews or soups. Choose those that have a dry, smooth, dull rind without soft spots or cracks, and are heavy for their size.
Dumpling squash can be stored up to three months in a cool dry spot, free from direct sunlight. They are a great source of vitamins C and A. To prepare, just cut around the stem, scoop out the seeds and pulp, and bake until tender.
Chinese Long Beans
This long slender green-colored bean is also called asparagus bean, snake bean, long-podded cowpeas, yard-long bean, and long bean. They are more limp than string beans but have a similar flavor.
Purchase flexible, fresh beans with a bright color (can be pale to dark green, depending on the variety), avoiding those with swollen pods. Refrigerate them in a plastic bag, unwashed, for up to five days.
These lengthy fat-free beans are nutrient rich—a good source of iron, fiber, folate, vitamins B1, B2, and B6, calcium, and several minerals including copper, magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, potassium, and zinc.