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Suzanne O'Malley

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Day Five: Super Bowl XLVI Guilt-Free Cauliflower Breadsticks and Pizza

Posted: 02/ 5/2012 9:04 am

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Super Bowl Sunday. A national day of eating, drinking, kicking back with no greater worries than the resolution or size of your flat screen TV, remembering the exact kick-off time (6:29 p.m. EST) and perhaps the Giants/Patriots point spread (not the name of a Super Bowl-themed dip, by the way).


Guilt-free Cauliflower Breadsticks [also can be used as pizza crust!]

  • head of cauliflower, grated
  • 2 whole eggs, plus two egg whites, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup 2% shredded mozzarella cheese (parmesan is superb as well)
  • Juice of one lime
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • Spice to taste, for example: 1/8 tsp. Tabasco sauce, 1 tsp. dried rosemary leaves, three cloves of garlic, salt to taste, OR try basil, oregano, parsley, cilantro -- you can't really go wrong!

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

  • Stir ingredients (except the oil) together in a mixing bowl.
  • Line an ovenproof baking dish or baking sheet with parchment paper and grease with olive oil.
  • Evenly spread the cauliflower batter across the parchment -- about 3/4 inch thick.
  • Square the edges and use a spatula to flatten the mixture and divide into rectangles.
  • Bake for 40 minutes until firm to the touch, crispy, and browned.
  • Remove from oven, peel the paper away from the breadsticks.
  • Divide again with spatula. Flip and return to oven for 10 additional minutes.
  • Eat the whole plateful if you like -- they total about 400 calories.

I hate to spoil the naughtiness of faux bread heaven for you, but cauliflower is low in fat and carbs, high in fiber and vitamin C -- three florets of cauliflower a day provide 67 percent of one's daily vitamin C requirement. In combination with vitamin E and beta-carotene, vitamin C enhances the immune system.

Cauliflower also contains folate, a B vitamin that promotes healthy tissue growth important to diabetics and patients with blood vessel disease. According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), in addition to preventing anemia, folate may also reduce the risk of heart attacks by lowering elevated levels of homocysteine, an amino acid toxic to blood vessels.

Two of cauliflower's ingredients are disease-fighting indole-3-carbinol (aka 13C, an anti-inflammatory) and the photo nutrient sulforaphane. Johns Hopkins researchers have found sulforaphane lowered the occurrence of breast tumors in lab animals by almost 40 percent. It housecleans by sweeping out toxins that could damage cells and turn cancerous. The combination of 13C and sulforaphane reduces high estrogen levels that foster tumor growth, especially in the breasts and the prostate glands.

You know what I especially love about the Super Bowl? It almost single-handedly keeps Roman numerals alive -- a hip-hop fave. The next time you hear from me, we'll have a new champion.
Peace out!

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Megan Parmenter, Yale Heart Study Research Associate, contributed to reporting this blog.

February is American Heart Month. Please take a few minutes to visit the Yale Heart Study site and complete the heart attack survivors survey, or forward it to someone you know who has survived a heart attack. https://heartstudy.yale.edu/hacs/

Questions? Contact heart.study@yale.edu, visit facebook.com/YaleHeartStudy, or phone me at: 203-785-4872.

Disclosure: Suzanne O'Malley is a Senior Research Associate for the non-profit NIH-funded Yale Heart Study, a Faculty member of the Yale Writers' Conference & Associate/Director of Yale Summer Film Institute.

For more by Suzanne O'Malley, click here.

For more on personal health, click here.

 

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