healthy snacks

A-Z HEALTH

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H-H-HAZELNUTS

hazelnuts

In the nut family, hazelnuts contain the highest of vitamin E content, are 65% unsaturated fat, and are a good source of protein. They are high in most minerals; calcium, magnesium, manganese, iron, copper and potassium, zinc and selenium, and have a good B vitamin content.

So how are hazelnuts good for you? Lets start with fiber. You know, the gut loving, quality-life giving element of food we have all come to love, accept and understand. Fibre, in review, helps with our bowel transit times, helps keep the intestinal tract clean and clear, and improves overall digestion.  When digestion is functioning at full capacity, so can all other body systems be.

Vitamin E is a skin loving vitamin. Not just the skin on your face. Yes, it's great for the complexion. It's also good for tissue in the body such as cardiac muscle. Yes, hazelnuts are heart healthy! Vitamin E is also a powerful antioxidant helping our bodies combat free radicals. Our cells in our blood stream and walls of our blood vessels need protection from free radicals. Vitamin E, found in hazelnuts can help with this task, thus contributing to overall health.

The calcium found in these nuts are supportive to bone health, and strong teeth. Other minerals, such as zinc and selenium are supportive to thyroid health. Magnesium, can help relax muscle tension and aid sleep. The iron source is great for men and women, and should be loved by vegetarians as an alternative to meat.

Hazelnuts have a good source of B vitamins for those looking for new sources. B vitamins are the "anti stress" relief many of us are looking for.

Protein, healthy fat and fibre, all contribute to healthy growth and maintenance of tissues during all stages of life. So the next time you are thinking about fueling up on nuts, throw some hazels in the mix!

 

[Recipe] : Hummus + Fresh Fruit Salsa

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It's the end of our May Long Weekend here in Canada to celebrate Victoria Day - and although the weather has been less than summery in Alberta (and typical apparently) - it's always nice to have healthy & delicious recipes to take to gatherings.

This recipe in particular will be a party hit throughout the entire summer - simple hummus remixed with fresh summer fruits & toasted nuts! What's not to love?

Ingredients

2 cups cooked chickpeas, rinsed + drained if using canned 1/4 cup tahini (sesame seed paste) 2 tablespoons creamy almond butter 1 tablespoon white miso paste pinch of crushed red pepper flakes juice of 1/2 a lemon 1/3 cup olive oil, + more for drizzling salt and pepper, to taste 1/2 cup basil pesto toasted sesame seeds + hemp seeds, for topping edible flowers, for garnish

Summer Fruit Salsa 1/2 cup fresh cherries, pitted + chopped 1/2 cup fresh strawberries, cored + chopped 1/2 cup fresh blackberries, sliced into rounds 1 nectarine or peach, diced 1 jalapeño or 2 habanero chilis, seeded + chopped 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped 1/4 cup fresh basil, copped juice of 1 lemon (may also use a lime)

Instructions

Hummus :

Add the chickpeas, tahini, almond butter, miso paste, crushed red pepper flakes and lemon juice to the bowl of a food processor. Puree the mixture until smooth, scraping down the sides if necessary. Add 1/3 up water and puree until smooth. With the machine running stream in the olive oil until smooth and creamy. I like to let my machine run a good 5 minutes (scraping down the sides once or twice) to insure a really smooth and creamy hummus. If the hummus is too thick for your liking, thin with water or extra olive oil, adding about 1 tablespoon at a time until your desired consistency is reached. Taste and season as desired with salt + pepper.To serve, top the hummus with pesto and fruit salsa (recipe below). Sprinkle with toasted seeds.

Salsa :

In a bowl, combine the cherries, strawberries, blackberries, peaches or nectarines, jalapeño, cilantro, basil and lemon juice, combine well. Can be stored, covered in the fridge for up to 2 days.

ENJOY!

[Recipe & Images : Half Baked Harvest]

[Author : Bekah Glass]