Beef Vegetable Stew with Roasted Potatoes

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Roasting the potatoes separately, rather than cooking them with the rest of the stew ingredients, ensures the potatoes do not get mushy.  My husband hates mushy.

 

Place in large slow cooker

2 lbs. beef stew meat

2 c. beef broth (if eating gluten free, ensure broth is gluten free)

1/4 c. mixed spice blend such as Kirkland Organic No Salt Seasoning Mix

1 large carrot, peeled and cut into chunks

2 peppers, seeded and cut into chunks

(If you can tolerate onion – I can’t – one chopped onion can also be added)

Cook on low approximately 6 hours, then add:

2 cups frozen mixed vegetables

(Thicken broth if necessary)

Cook for another hour on low

In the meantime, make the roasted potatoes:

4 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into pieces

1/4 c. dried chives

1 – 2 T. Italian seasoning blend

1 T. oil

Small amount of water

Cook at 350 until tender, about 40 minutes

 

Makes 4 servings. Can either serve the stew over the potatoes or mix the potatoes in.

 

 

Steak and Pepper Stir Fry

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This was “planned overs” for supper last night.

2 peppers, thinly sliced

2 medium size steaks (I used steaks we’d had left over from a BBQ the night before), thinly sliced and trimmed of fat. You could also use uncooked steak, thinly sliced, and cook at the same time as the peppers until done).

1/4 c. Organicville Teriyaki Sauce

1/8 c. orange juice

 

 

Saute peppers over medium heat.  I used a large frying pan sprayed with cooking spray, added 1/4 c. of water, and covered it so the peppers softened.  Add steak, teriyaki sauce and juice. Cook, covered, about 10 minutes. Serve with cooked rice, in a wrap, or even in a lettuce wrap.  Makes about 4 servings.

 

Meat Loaf Muffins with a Tomato Sauce Glaze {Gluten Free and Low FODMAP}

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1 lb. ground beef
1 large egg
1/2 small carrot, peeled and grated
1/2 small zucchini, grated
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 – 2 teaspoons Mrs. Dash salt-free seasoning (I used Table Blend)
1 T. dried parsley
1/2 tsp. celery salt
1/3 – 1/2 c. tomato or pasta sauce

Preheat oven to 375. Spray the muffin cups of a muffin pan with non-stick spray. Combine beef through celery salt in a bowl. Using an ice cream scoop, fill muffin cups. Bake at 375 for 20 minutes. Half-way through the cooking time, remove pan from oven and brush each mini meat loaf with the tomato sauce, then return pan to oven to continue cooking. Makes 8 mini meat loaves.

A Primer on Anemia

linguini with clams
linguini with clams (Photo credit: stu_spivack)

I’m suspecting I have some form of anemia. I’ve had iron deficiency anemia in the past.  Update: The doctor thought my symptoms were consistent with hypothyroid, even though blood tests show my TSH as within normal limits.

There are three types of anemia linked to deficiency- iron deficiency, folate (folic acid) deficiency and B12 deficiency anemia. From www.anemia.org:

What are the effects of untreated anemia?

Long-lasting deficiency of vitamin B6, folate, or vitamin B12 can result in anemia. With folate and vitamin B12 deficiency, anemia often causes symptoms such as fatigue, poor appetite, weight loss, and diarrhea. The earliest symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency may be weakness, poor coordination, and numbness or a “pins and needles” feeling in the hands and feet. Mild irritability and forgetfulness are other early signs. A severe untreated deficiency can result in serious damage to the nerves, spinal cord, and brain.

How do I know if I have anemia?

Symptoms usually develop when anemia is moderate to severe, and can include fatigue, weakness, pale skin, chest pain, dizziness, irritability, numbness or coldness in your hands and feet, trouble breathing, a fast heartbeat, and headache. It is important to see your doctor on a regular basis in order to be tested for possible anemia.

I’m definitely dealing with a lot of  these symptoms.  I’ll be asking my doctor for bloodwork to check all levels – B12, folate, and iron. For iron levels, I’ll ask for a CBC (complete blood count) as well as a serum ferritin test, which measures the amount of iron stored in the body.  Sometimes, levels are too low to correct with diet and pills may be necessary.

There are two sources of iron in food – heme and non-heme iron.  Examples of heme iron would be meat, poultry and seafood and is more easily absorbed.  Non-heme iron sources would be grains, vegetables, nuts, and beans. To increase absorption of iron from all sources, including iron pills, take with a vitamin C source such as fruit juice.   Excellent sources of iron are beef, liver, clams and Cream of Wheat cereal.   Good sources of B12 are animal products.  Folic acid is found in green leafy vegetables.

Here’s a recipe from Apple magazine that is high in iron.  Serve with a spinach salad with strawberries for more iron, vitamin C and folic acid.

Zesty Clam Linguini

2 T. olive oil

3/4 c. onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced or 1 tsp. dried garlic

3/4 c. red pepper, chopped

1, 14 oz. can diced tomatoes

5 oz. can whole baby clams, drained

1 tsp. no salt added herb seasoning

1/4 c. chopped green onions

13 ounce (375 g) package whole wheat linguini

Heat oil in medium sized pan on medium.  Saute onion until tender.  Add garlic and saute slightly. Add red pepper and saute two more minutes.  Add tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Simmer 10  – 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Meanwhile, make linguini according to package directions.  Add clams and seasoning to tomato sauce and heat through.  Serve on linguini.  Garnish with chives.  Serves four.

Some foods and beverages that interfere with iron absorption include tea, coffee, fiber, eggs, soy and dairy products, according to: http://www.truestarhealth.com/Notes/2870003.html

For information on iron-medication interactions, check here:  http://www.truestarhealth.com/Notes/3181009.html