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I've picked four of my favorite spring veggies to share with you, along with some ideas on how to prepare them and some nutritional information so you know how good they are for you!

Artichokes
Artichokes are high in fiber, potassium, calcium, iron, phosphorus and other essential minerals. My favorite way to prepare and enjoy an artichoke is grilled. I also love them stuffed or steamed, served with a cucumber salsa. I also toss artichoke hearts in pasta or salad.

Asparagus
Asparagus is extremely rich in vitamin K, which is important for bone health and nearly 66 percent of folate, which helps maintain a healthy cardiovascular system. The peak season for asparagus is April through May. I steam, grill or oven-roast them, and I also make asparagus soup, which you can serve hot or cold. Add them to salads or toss them into pasta.

Avocados
Avocados provide 20 essential nutrients, including fiber, potassium, vitamin B and folic acid. I eat them sliced in all kinds of salads, sandwiches, vegetable wraps, guacamole, soups and salsa, or I'll eat them cut open, pitted and with a squeeze of lemon and kosher salt.

Beets
Beets are a remarkable source of choline, folic acid, iodine, manganese, sodium, fiber and carbohydrates in the form of natural digestible sugars. I know many people like to boil beets, but my favorite method is to roast them in the oven until all the natural sugar starts to come out and caramelize. I peel them after they have been roasted, then slice them thin and serve with creamy goat cheese, fresh arugula, olive oil and a thick balsamic glaze over the top! The sweetness from the beets, along with the slightly bitter taste from the arugula and the tangy balsamic, is a dynamite combination. It made a beet-lover out of me!


Thankfully my taste buds have matured since my childhood, and I adore and can't get enough of all kinds of vegetables! Here is the recipe for my Roasted Beet Salad with Goat Cheese and Arugula.

Enjoy!

Sending a big bowl of springtime goodness,
Cristina
 
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