by: Jen

Getting your 5 a day can be a difficult task in itself! But when choosing your veg for the week, try to opt for what’s in season. Eating in season means you are getting veg which is at its freshest, at its best quality and flavour and at the best price.

A vegetable which is at its prime this season is the courgette. Courgettes which can also be called zucchini come from the cucumber family. They are very versatile and can be used in a wide variety of dishes. Courgettes can be steamed, boiled, stir-fried, sautéed, stewed, grilled, roasted, deep-fried and baked. They are a great source of vitamin A and a very good source of vitamin C and folic Acid which are all important nutrients during pregnancy. Vitamins A & C are important to support a healthy immune system during pregnancy and also help the body to use iron. Folic acid is necessary for your baby’s healthy growth and to reduce the risk of neural tube defects.

Check out this very tasty and quick recipe for courgette chips! These can be enjoyed served with a main meal or as a snack and are a great source of fibre and vitamin C.

Tasty Courgette Chips

Courgette Chips

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup dry breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • Pinch garlic powder
  • 2 small courgettes sliced
  • 1 egg
  • Spray oil

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together the breadcrumbs, cheese and garlic powder.
  3.  In a separate bowl, whisk the egg.
  4. Dip the courgette slices in the egg and toss in the breadcrumb mixture.
  5. Place coated slices on an ovenproof wire rack coated with spray oil. Place rack on a baking sheet.
  6. Bake at 180°C for 30 minutes or until browned and crisp.
  7. Serve immediately, as a side or a snack.

 

Beetroot is another vegetable to look out for this season! Beetroot is also very versatile and can be boiled, baked, braised or pickled in vinegar. It can be used as a freshly cooked hot vegetable or eaten cold with salads. Beetroot is a good source of vitamin C and folic acid which as mentioned before are very important nutrients during all stages of pregnancy. Below is a delicious and nutritious recipe for Beetroot soup, perfect coming into the winter months!

Beetroot Soup

Beetroot Soup

Ingredients

  • 3 or 4 large beetroots
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Beef stock
  • Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • Salt + Pepper

Method

  1. Peel beetroots and chop into medium sized chunks. Peel & chop the onion and garlic.
  2. Warm olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir in onions and garlic, cook until soft but not browned, about 5 mins.
  3. Stir in beets and cook for 1 minute.
  4. Cover with water and add in the stock, salt and pepper and simmer until the beetroot is soft, around 40mins
  5. Take off the heat and allow to cool slightly
  6. Add soup to the food processor and pulse until liquefied. Serve warm with a dollop of low fat natural yogurt on top.

Below is a list of some other veg also in season this month! For more information and listings of all fruit and veg in season visit http://www.bestinseason.ie/

  • Beetroot
  • Broccoli
  • French Beans
  • Courgette
  • Kale
  • Leeks
  • Mangetout
  • Pak Choi
  • Runner Beans
  • Spinach
  • Peppers
  • Radish
  • Scallions
  • Tomatoes