Native American Food in the Vegetarian Diet

Many of the foods we consume today were introduced to the early European explorers and later settlers by the native inhabitants they soon displaced.

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Recipe: Black Bean & Corn Salsa

This is a recipe I came up with recently after cleaning out my kitchen cupboards and refrigerator. I still have no idea why I had creamed corn in my cupboard – I won’t touch the stuff, so what on earth did I buy it for? Did it end up in my grocery cart by accident somehow? I once got home with Chinese Five Spice seasoning that had not been on my shopping list – it must have rolled into my area of the belt from the person ahead of me in line at the cashier. Those little dividers don’t quite go across the whole belt.

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Vitamins in the Vegetarian Diet, Part 2: the Water-Soluble Vitamins

Water soluble vitamins do not require protein carriers and travel more freely in the bloodstream and the lymph system than do the fat-soluble vitamins. They are discharged through the urine and rarely become toxic. It’s easier to become deficient in the water soluble vitamins, as the body stores them in smaller amounts.

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Whole Grain Alternatives

Most whole grains that are otherwise considered healthy for the majority of the population are actually extremely toxic to those individuals with the very real problem of gluten sensitivity. Here are five grain alternatives, four of which are considered to be complete proteins:

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Recipe: Spicy Pumpkin-Currant Bread with Pepita Butter

This is a particularly tasty version of the pumpkin bread that pops up virtually everywhere this time of year.

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Recipe: Ceci Penne Florentine

In Italy, the garbanzo bean or chick pea is called the ceci bean. Florentine, in addition to referring to the Tuscan town of Florence, is a name also added to dishes made with spinach.

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Whole Grain Choices

It is a good idea to stock your kitchen with a variety of whole grains and whole grain alternatives. Most supermarkets carry a small variety in bulk in the ‘organic’ section, and of course your local health food store will have a great deal more. Here is an overview of the grains you can find:

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Recipe: Pumpkin Pancakes with Fresh Blueberry Sauce

I’ve never been a pancake fan – sweet breakfasts weren’t my thing, especially anything involving maple syrup. But these are pancakes like no other. Neither they nor the sauce that goes over them are overly sweet. You actually taste pumpkin and blueberry, not sugar and sugar. The whole grain flour makes them very filling, so you don’t have a sugar crash mid-morning.

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Recipe: Hopi Amaranth Greens & Grains

The following dish is a Southwestern Native American twist on wilted greens.

Because amaranth is a complete protein, this dish is a meal all by itself. Serve it up in a soup bowl.

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Recipe: Greek Tyropitta

Traditionally, Tyropitta is a small, handheld cheese pie encased in phyllo pastry. This less portable but just as delicious version originated in the Sporades Islands region of Greece.

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