I. Can’t. Wait. (we’re seeing it tomorrow)
Rutabaga! Yes, the little-known and little-eaten (at least here in the U.S.) winter root vegetable that packs a nutritional wallop, is the focus of today’s post. They also happen to be low-FODMAP friendly, just sayin’.
So what’s so great about this vegetable that sounds like it walked out of a Tolkien novel? I imagine it would be some sort of below-earth dwelling creature. Not quite a hobbit but maybe a cousin of the hobbits.
Anyway, so here’s a little profile on these super-awesome vegetables:
- High in potassium, the electolyte that helps keep your body in balance (to keep the sodium from taking over). 782mg/cup of rutabaga… move over bananas!! (only 420-480 in a banana).
- 4 grams of fiber per cup, and we all know how important fiber is to keeping the pipes running smoothly.
- High in the trace minerals, magnesium, manganese and phospherous. Why care? Well, magnesium (Mg) is needed for metabolism, synthesizing DNA (you know, that whole creating new cells thing) and is used in building cell structures. Manganese (Mn) also is needed for metabolism, acts as an antioxidant, helps in bone development and wound healing. Phosphorus (P) is essential to bone-building, energy production and a plethora of other chemical reactions in the body. Basically, these elements keep your body running at the cellular level.
- Rutabagas are part of the brassica family, or the cruciferous (the same as cabbage and cauliflower) so they’re chock full of isothiocyanates, plant-based compounds that have been found to fight against cancer cells. They also contain glucosinolates and indoles (check out the cauliflower post for more info).
So rutabagas, unlike the peace-loving hobbits, are warriors in the battle for good health!
You can eat them all kinds of ways, baked, boiled and mashed, raw (ick, I don’t recommend that way though) or roasted. Rutabagas, since they’re a winter vegetable and thus cheap in the grocery stores, have been a staple in the Reed household for a while. I like to toss them in chili or stews with the slow cooker as that gets them super soft and the texture of a firm potato.
Here’s a slow-cooker recipe that the Reeds nosh on:
1-2 rutabaga (depending on their size and the size of the stomach’s you’re feeding) peeled and diced up
1 onion and 3-4 cloves of garlic, diced (or not if you’re making this FODMAP friendly)
2-3 large carrots, peeled and chopped up
1/2 cup of frozen (or fresh) peas
1-2 lbs of beef or chicken
Generous shakings of: thyme, oregano, basil and salt
1. Dump the above ingredients in a slow cooker and set on “low” for 6 hours.
2. Serve and enjoy!
3. For best results, eat while watching the Hobbit or any other Lord of the Rings movie.