Studies show that if moms-to-be got the recommended dose of folate before and during early pregnancy, 70 percent of all neuraltube defects could be prevented. Best sources: fortified cereals, leafy greens, beans, asparagus, peanuts, oranges, Brussels sprouts, wheat germ, and the tasty building blocks found in this recipe--peas.
11 cups dried black-eyed peas, soaked overnight
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup diced onion
½ cup diced red bell pepper
2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce plus 1 tablespoon adobo sauce
Pinch of salt and pepper
1 15-ounce carton or jar fireroasted tomatoes
¾ cup corn niblets
4 handfuls baby spinach
1. Drain black-eyed peas. Combine peas and enough water to cover them in a medium pot. Bring to a boil over medium heat, skimming off any foam that may occur during cooking. Reduce heat and cook until tender (about an hour).
2. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onions and cook until soft (about 4 minutes). Add red bell pepper, chipotle peppers (if you want a spicer dish, finely chop the chipotle peppers rather than leaving them whole), adobo sauce and salt and pepper; sauté 3 minutes.
3. Reduce heat; add tomatoes, blackeyed peas and corn and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the baby spinach and cook until wilted (about 3 minutes). Serve immediately.
Per serving: 170 calories, 7 g protein, 25 g carbohydrates, 5 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 56 mg calcium, 3.2 mg iron, 165 mcg folate, 7 g fiber