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Now that you’re expecting, it’s time to start thinking about beanies for baby. Not the stuffed animals, mind you, but the edible variety — they’re loaded with flavor and bursting with valuable nutrients. “Beans are one of those foods that should be at the core of a pregnant woman’s diet,” says Mary Lee Chin, M.S., R.D., a Denver-based nutrition consultant and dietitian. “They’re very rich in folate, which helps decrease
the risk of spina bifida, and they’re also an excellent source of iron. Pregnant women’s blood
production increases to nourish the baby, and they need iron to produce red blood cells.”
Beans also provide potassium, zinc, copper and vitamin B6, Chin points out, as well as a good dose of fiber. “Many pregnant women suffer from constipation due to the iron in their prenatal supplement,” she says. “Beans help counter that.” / On a chilly winter day, a comforting meal of these nutritional gold mines will bring color to your cheeks and a smile to your lips. And more importantly, they’ll fill your diet with valuable nutrients to nourish you and your budding bean sprout.
Lemon–Thyme Salmon Over Black-Eyed Peas
5 teaspoons olive oil, divided
3 cups chopped leeks, white and pale-green parts only
3 teaspoons minced fresh thyme (or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried), divided
2 cups black-eyed peas, cooked
3 tablespoons water
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Nonstick cooking spray
4 4-ounce salmon fillets
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon sugar
Heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add leeks and 2 teaspoons fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried); sauté until soft, approximately 6–8 minutes. Stir in peas and water; cook over very low heat until just warmed through. Season with salt and pepper; cover and keep warm.
Preheat broiler. Lightly coat salmon with cooking spray; season with salt and pepper and place on a foil-lined baking sheet. Broil about 8 minutes, or until flaky and cooked through.
Whisk together remaining thyme, garlic, lemon juice, mustard and sugar in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in remaining 3 teaspoons oil; season with salt and pepper.
Spoon a portion of the black-eyed pea mixture on each plate. Lay salmon partially over beans; drizzle with lemon juice mixture.