Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A Healthy Dinner

It's rare for me to cook meals for dinnertime since Matt is deployed. I normally just fix something simple like a turkey sandwich, pb & j sandwich, or a healthy frozen meal. So, the other day I decided I would change it up an actually have a better dinner as a way to prepare my cooking skills for when my hubby returns back in a couple months! You would be surprised at how bad my cooking skills are after not making anything special for 5 months! It's as if they took a vacation and now I'm trying to find them again, haha. 
Anyways, like I was saying, the other day I made a delicious fish, rice, and vegetable dinner that I decided to share with our viewers.

What you will need:
Tilapia Fish (I use the vacuumed individual sealed Coleson's Catch)
Julienne Carrots
Sugar Snap Peas
Pearled Barely (or substitute it for whole-grain rice)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil

How To:
Rinse off vegetables and then cut up carrots. Place in pot of boiling water and have it simmer with the lid closed to steam for 13-15 minutes. 
Pre-heat oven to 425*
Go ahead and start boiling the water and then put the rice or pearled barley on the stove once water is boiled.

Line baking dish with foil (for easy clean up) and spray cooking oil to prevent fish from sticking. Place thawed tilapia in baking dish.
In a bowl, mix together melted butter, paprika, pepper, lemon juice, basil, and oregano.
Spread on both side of the tilapia. Cut up a couple slices of lemon and set on top of fish.
Place in oven for 10-15 minutes or until the fish can be easily flaked with a fork. 

Once the vegetables are finished, drain and then mix with rice (or pearled barley) once done. Add some extra virgin olive oil sauce for taste and seasoning. 
Plate rice and vegetables, then remove the tilapia from over and place on top of rice and vegetables on plate.

Health Benefits:
Pearled Barley - high in fiber and reduces the risk of coronary heart disease and can lower your cholesterol. It also can reduce the risk of diabetes type 2 and colon cancer. It is basically a fat-free food with less than 1 gram of fat per serving.

Carrots -  Helps with your vision due to the Vitamin A source. Deficiency of Vitamin A can lead to night blindness. Having enough of Vitamin A, will help prevent cataracts.  It helps to lower blood cholesterol levels and heart disease. Studies have shown if you eat 5 or more carrots a week compared to those who only eat 1 a week, are much less likely to suffer from a stroke. 

Sugar Snap Peas - Helps keep calcium in your bones and improves bone health by reducing build-up that leads to osteoporosis (Thank you Vitamin K and B6!!) The folate in the peas also helps with your heart health to reduce the risk of heart disease. 

Tilapia - High in protein but low in calories, which is just fabulous in my book! Tilapia has a good source of selenium that helps to reduce risk of developing cancers, thyroid function, and immune system. There are many types of vitamins and minerals in tilapia, some of them being Niacin which aids in energy metabolism, Vitamin B12 that helps your nerve function and formation of red blood cells, Phosphorous, Calcium, Magnesium helps to aid in strong bones and teeth, and lastly Potassium which regulates your heartbeat and blood pressure. 

*I knew most of these facts already (thanks to my medical classes for nursing), but I did look up a few facts online to make sure I was given the correct information.

Well, there you have it. A dinner meal that is not only delicious but healthy!
P.S. Do you like the added information of Health Benefits? If so, I can continue to do so for the future.

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