Here is the first post in a series entitled Friday Finds. I will post interesting foods I find around town. If you've been reading my blogs you know I encourage home cooked meals as much as possible to achieve healthy eating. Realistically speaking though, even for me, I need to take some short cuts sometimes.
During the course of the Olympics, there was a commercial being aired by Galen Weston promoting some new President's Choice Blue Menu items. Intrigued I deceided to try some of them.
The one I am sharing with you is Bulgur with Quinoa and Chickpeas. Quinoa is a grain but it is also a complete protein. Therefore, you can get away with smaller portions of animal based protein like chicken or fish when served with quinoa. Additionally, chickpeas are also a source of protein so you really don't need to load up on chicken, fish or meat with this product. I served it with homemade skinless boneless roasted chicken and carrots. I thought it was outstanding. It was very tasty and aromatic.
When buying prepared foods always take a look at nutrition label on the back of the package. It would be difficult to briefly describe how food labeling works. However, here are a couple of quick things to pay attention to. First, check the portion size.
The nutrition information for this product is for 1/4 of the package. If you plan on eating more than that then you'll have do the calculations for the larger portion. Second, check the fat amount in grams. A rule of thumb would be 5 grams of fat per portion (3 grams or less for saturated fat and NO trans fat). Third, check for sodium. Ideally you do not want any sodium but that is not realistic for a packaged food. Look for about 200 mg or less of sodium which is about 8% of the daily value (total amount of sodium for the day). This product has 18%, not ideal but better than most prepared foods. Finally, check the fiber content on the label. Look for something with at least 5 grams per serving which this product has. There are many other aspects to consider when reading a food label but the ones mentioned should give you a quick idea if the food is worth buying.
Because this product is higher in protein than most side dishes why not double the portion and add an extra 1/2 cup of chickpeas and make it into a vegetarian meal? Throw in 1 cup of frozen cooked vegetables and you should feel pretty satisfied. If you have tried or will try this product let us know what you think!