Trays of Christmas cookies are beautiful. Except for a chewy and spicy molasses nibble, however, I generally feel that my eyes get a better deal than my stomach. They are a lovey gift to receive but the labor involved in baking and decorating all those treats is a bit overwhelming. This year, I’m passing along our Roasted Mandarin Peel and Pepper Relish, Tomato Compote, and Blender Pesto to friends and neighbors. Each of these easy jars of food love can enhance a weeknight or company meal in this busiest time of year. No extra pounds, either!
The Benefits of Basil
Besides providing great flavor and color to dishes, 4 tablespoons of chopped basil has 54% of the DV of Vitamin K, 12 % of Vitamin A, and 6 % of manganese. It also has 32 mg of omega-3 fatty acids, eight times the level of omega-6s, an excellent ratio! Try the Blender Pesto on our Stove Top Flank Steak recipe
The Benefits of Mandarins and Tangerines with Peels
We include the peel in our recipe to provide extra flavor, contrast, and health benefits. Some estimates indicate that the peel provides double the level of benefits of the juice itself. Citrus peels are full of flavonoids, including naringin in the outer peel, and hesperidin in the white inner layer. It should be noted that naringin consumption can interfere with efficacy of certain medications, so consult with your physician. A medium-sized tangerine (without the peel) will provide 40% of the DV of Vitamin C, 12% of Vitamin A, and 3-4% of DV for Vitamins B6 and B12, thiamine, folate, magnesium and potassium.
The Benefits of Tomato Compote
Because our Tomato Compote is reduced San Marzano tomatoes and includes sun-dried tomatoes, it is packed full of vitamins and minerals. A cross between a sauce and a paste, it a good accompaniment to many dishes. When topped with a bit of olive oil, it should last several weeks in the refrigerator if you are just using it by the spoonful.
A half cup of the compote contains 25% of the DV for Vitamin C, 7% of DV for Vitamin A, 8 % of DV for Vitamin E, 6% of DV for Vitamin K. It also contains 14 % of DV for iron, 11% of DV for potassium, and between 6-7% of the DV for thiamine, niacin, calcium, magnesium and manganese. It does pack a nutritional punch! We often serve our Confetti Meatballs with just a bit of compote thinned with a touch of bone broth topped with parmesan.