Many of us ae too busy feeling sorry as we see summer end. But because we’re so into eating well around here, and that includes all the pretty colours, here’s the best news of the seasons changing: the colours you can eat are about to get better yet.
Colours are good in more than one way
For example, take the watermelon radish I got from the farmer’s market last week. Have you ever seen or tasted one? (See the featured photo.) The taste is pleasantly ‘radishy’ though not very spicy, but the colours are just the prettiest.
Among other things, radishes contain vitamins, minerals, and fibre, but they also contain anthocyanins which are anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and neuroprotective compounds. Some of the active compounds they contain can target free radicals, which means they are powerful antioxidants. You can sprout radish seeds (see the previous post on the benefits of sprouts) and they are deliciously spicy and you can also pickle them naturally which adds a whole bunch of beneficial probiotics to the fibre load (prebiotics).
Last but not least… Your meal looks beautiful, and it does wonder for your health too!
Speaking of anthocyanins…
How do you like your grapes? I like them purple, and with that little bit of foggy appearance. Yes, I mean the sweet-smelling Coronation grapes that come dressed in deep purple coats and are best at encapsulating the essence of fall: lingering day warmth that ripens them, and the night chill that sweetens them just enough, while not stealing all the tartness away. Oh, and they have seeds too, which makes them just crunchy enough too.
What you get from eating purple grapes: loads of polyphenols including resveratrol, fibre and vitamins. The active compounds in grapes have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and anticancer properties. They lower your risk of cardiovascular disease and particularly high blood pressure. Also, it’s not a hardship to eat them given the exquisite taste and the short availability season.
And on that note (purple, yummy and seasonal)…
Have some plums too. There are many varieties out there but I am partial to the seasonal Italian prune plums which have that slight tartness neatly wrapped in sweet and flavourful tastes.
Plums are good to eat as they are, or you can make a beautiful crumble (see recipe below) or if you committed to a whole bunch, like I did, you can freeze some of them for when you want a taste of fall during winter, which you will because we’re built like that 😉.
Here’s why they are good for you: plums contain a wide variety of bioactive compounds including polyphenols (antioxidant activity), phenolic acids (also powerful antioxidants) and vitamins. They can improve cardiovascular health, have antimicrobial properties and laxative properties too (the dose makes the poison, as they say, so tread gently if your digestive system reacts strongly to plums).
In the next post I will feature most people’s favourite fruit, the apple, plus the very appealing deep orange squash and pumpkins too.
Have fun with your purples in the meantime!
And the recipe…
Apple and Italian plum crumble (inspired by an apple and pear crumble by The Happy Pear)
3 apples, diced (peels on)
2 cups of plums, quartered
A handful of frozen blueberries
¼ cup date paste
1 ½ cups of oat flakes
1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
2 tbsp of ground cinnamon
1 tbsp of ground cloves
¼ cup walnuts, chopped (use any kind of nuts you want, or none if allergic)
¼ cup sunflower seeds (or hemp seeds)
2-3 tablespoons of olive oil
Heat up the oven to 365F. In the meantime, to prepare the fruit, just place them all in a pot plus the date paste and cook on medium heat until they are soft and there is a bit of sauce formed at the bottom (20 minutes or so).
Place them in a glass baking dish and cover with the dry ingredients, all mixed up. Spread on top and mix some in with the fruit.
Bake at 365F for 25-30 minutes and serve warm or cold.