The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

boxed red wine | Jolly Green Giant ain’t got nothing on me

Peter Crosta | Features Editor

[email protected]

How much does a Twinkie cost? A dollar? Does that include
your diabetes testing supplies, insulin, and any other health care necessity you are begging for each time you eat them? Can you put a price on the self-esteem boost you get when you see yourself looking good in the mirror? Compared to the cost of eating junk food, vegetables are a steal.

Of course you wouldn’t expect a nutrition columnist to say anything different, but vegetables are the key ingredient of a healthy diet.

My favorites are asparagus, broccoli and carrots.
You can eat the carrots and broccoli raw, so there’s no prep time to get in the way. I often find myself vegging out in front of the TV eating hummus-dipped broccoli for hours (by the way, I have a hummus recipe that will change your life — available with my column online at But don’t eat your vegetables with ranch dressing. It’s fattening.

It may seem crass, but if you plan on eating a lot of broccoli, I suggest either investing in some Beano or you’ll find yourself so gassy, tying a balloon weight to your ankle will be your only alternative.
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Most vegetable dishes are easy to prepare. I personally find the flavor and texture of steamed broccoli, and all steamed vegetables for that matter, offensive. For broccoli, I put a splash of olive oil in a frying fan, and let it heat up on high until the oil begins to ripple. Then, I throw in the broccoli, sprinkle on some salt and pepper, and let it sizzle for a mere moment over high heat, just until one side turns black. You get a charred, salty texture on one side and the cooked flavor without the mushiness. Droplets of the oil will likely splatter, so you might want to wear long sleeves.

Fun fact: carrots become healthier
the more you cook them, a rare exception
to the raw-food principle that veggies lose nutrition as you cook them. Regardless,

I’m not going to tell you to eat them cooked when I only eat them as finger food. They still have vitamin A raw, and they beat Doritos
while watching “Seinfeld” reruns.

Lastly, there’s asparagus, to be eaten raw by culinary masochists and cooked by everyone else. Brush them with olive oil and lightly dust with salt and pepper. If you’re so blessed, barbeque them over direct medium heat for five minutes, flipping halfway through. When using an oven, cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil and bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes with the same oil, salt, pepper. After either cooking method, grate a dry, Italian cheese, like grana padano over the asparagus.

Enjoy your vegetables. They’re the most nutrient-dense part of you meal.

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