Veggies for Father’s Day – Is your dad more of a meat and potatoes man? Chances are he is. According to Men’s Journal, only 19% of men actually eat enough vegetables. And the one vegetable they are most likely to eat is the potato; it’s ranked the most popular vegetable by both men and women. But now cauliflower is gaining admiration; it’s robust and versatile, just like the potato, but very low in carbohydrates. We know that parents who eat healthy are more likely to have kids who follow suit, so adding more vegetables to the diet will not only benefit fathers, but perhaps their children too. We love our dads, so if they can’t seem to get past the potato, it’s time for a little encouragement.
Potatoes do have some nutritionally flattering features- they’re a good source of vitamin C, B6, potassium and manganese. They also provide antioxidants that are believed to be associated with reducing the risk of chronic diseases. The problem with potatoes is that they are high-starch and not as nutrient-dense as other vegetables. This is compounded by the fact that potatoes are usually eaten without the skins which is where most of the nutrients and fibre are concentrated. For many potato lovers out there, much of that nutrition goes straight into the compost and what’s left on the plate is a calorie-dense, low-fibre food. While potatoes shouldn’t necessarily be banished, they shouldn’t be a staple food either.
There is a plethora of health blogs online that can help you find some satisfying spud swaps. By adding the term “paleo” or “low-carb” to any online recipe search you are bound to find something satisfying. Cauliflower is especially popular because its dense texture makes it very filling and therefore a worthy substitute. It’s also very low on the glycemic index and packs in even more of the nutrients found in potatoes without all the starch. You can try a cauliflower mash or while the grill is hot, cook up the cauliflower steaks featured here. Some other excellent sides to try are sweet potato salads, jicama fries or root vegetable mashes.
Wishing you and your family a Happy and Healthy Father’s Day!
• 1 medium head of cauliflower
• 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
• 4 tbsp. olive oil
• 2 tsp. whole grain Dijon mustard
• 1 clove of garlic
• Salt and pepper
Directions: Slice your cauliflower approximately 1.5-2 cm thick. Mix all other ingredients in a small bowl and using a basting brush, cover one side of the cauliflower. Lay the covered slices down on the grill at medium-low heat and baste the other side. Cook each side for 6-7 minutes lid down ensuring that the barbecue temperature does not rise and checking on the steaks every few minutes. When they are soft enough to poke a fork in without much effort, it’s time to plate them and serve.
Natalie Lavers is a health and wellness consultant in Montreal. She offers advice on using food and stress reduction techniques to support proper digestion and optimal health. Find out more about her and read her blog at www.lavienourrie.com.