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6/5/14 8:35 P

I love grapefruit on my salads. Where I shop, they sell a big jug of grapefruits in a container, it has like 8 whole grapefruits in it or something awesome like that ha. I know they're such a pain to dig into when whole so I definitely prefer the jug! Watermelon, surprisingly, is also really delicious on salads especially when it is drizzled with balsamic vinegar mm. Goes great with feta and fresh spinach!

When I make a vinaigrette, I mix olive oil, balsamic/red wine vinegar, minced garlic, italian spices, dijon mustard, and some lemon juice (sometimes a little parm cheese too). Super delicious!!!

NIRERIN Posts: 14,249
6/5/14 7:48 A

1. it's not weird that you prefer salads when there is fruit in them. look at restaurant menus and see how often strawberries and blue cheese pop up. fruit on salads is pretty common.

2. frozen fruit is mushy when thawed. basically freezing creates ice crystals inside the fruit and when it thaws the ice crystals melt and leave tiny holes in the structure of the fruit, which in turn leaves it mushy. if you want to marry convenience and crispness look to canned/plastic cupped. you can get pears and pineapples and mandarin oranges in their own juices and if you put the fruit on one salad you can use the juice to make a vinaigrette with for another. beyond that you just need to cut fresh.

3. look at whatever dressings you like the taste of and make a note of the herbs and spices. a vinaigrette is basically oil, vinegar, herbs and spices. the more oil it has, the higher cal it will be. the more herbs and spices, the more flavorful it will be. if you want to used reserved juice, use it in place of the vinegar, particularly if it's something acidic like citrus juice. you may also want to try apple cider or balsamic vinegar instead of white. they both have a little more flavor. i tend to do more honey mustard instead of a proper vinaigrette, but i just do a about three small dollops of mustard, one small dollop of honey, one small dollop of olive oil and then enough apple cider vinegar to make the volume to coat the salad. a small dollop is maybe 1/4 tsp and the acv is more like a Tablespoon if you want a little more quantifiable measurements. play around with what you like and you'll hit on something that meets your calorie needs and your tastebuds, google vinaigrette recipes and you'll find a ton.

4. i scoop out of the bag using a measuring cup. or, if it's fruit i have frozen myself, i store it in cup containers. i went to the local restaurant supply store and bought plastic 1 cup containers like they sell potato salad or soup in. i freeze the fruit on a sheet, then transfer it to a container. the containers are also great for when i bulk cook dry beans so i can freeze in one cup portions or when i package up leftovers to become frozen dinners. i kinda think you might need to elaborate on the problem that you are having to get a better idea of how to resolve it. flour you just scoop into a dry measuring cup and level off the top with a knife. if the recipe calls for sifted flour rather than flour sifted then you would put your dry measure cup on the counter and sift into the cup until it was full.

5. have you tried cooking your veg before adding to your salads? i have a lovely fall salad last autumn that was a bed of mixed greens topped with roasted potatoes and beets, goat cheese, cooked onions, cooked mushrooms, raw peas and pea shoots. things like onions and peppers can really caramelize and sweeten when you cook them [figure a teaspoon of olive oil will do for a cup of vegetables and if you do decide to do this, skip or reduce the fat in your dressing to balance it out] which may make them more appealing to you in your salads. roasted squash or root veggies or cruciferous veggies may also give you a milder and more manageable flavor to deal with if you don't like raw veg enough to add in plain. then you start to get into grain based salads [check out any vegetarian cookbook ever. basically it's a grain, with some cooked vegetables and a flavorful, vinaigrette-like sauce. some of them even have fruit]. and then you always have vegetable soups. or you have adding veg to pasta dishes you already like. i love mac and cheese or alfredo with zucchini sliced like noodles or cauliflower, i love mac and cheese with salsa and black beans, and i love teriyaki sauce on just about every vegetable ever. you can start by adding 1/4 cup of veggie to what you're already making or you can check out cookbooks from the library to find recipes that use lots of veggies that look good to you. add a little in, try a new recipe. either works you just have to find out what combo works best for you.

6. any fruit you can chop up can go in there. i have had papaya, mango, blackberries, rhubarb [with strawberry actually], starfruit, lime, coconut, grapes, watermelon, cantaloupe, melon, apricot, pear, apple and i've seen banana too. see a fruit, feel free to add it to a salad. some were along tropical lines [mango and papaya] others with the fruit paired with nuts [apricot, apple and pear, though not all of those in one salad] or with the fruit paired with cheese [apple, pear or grapes]. honestly i think the best place to look for combos is the menu of your local fancy restaurants. when they put any salad on the menu that's not a side or a wedge or a caeser or spinach bacon it's something that they put a lot of time and effort into making sure that it's going to be pretty and balanced and flavorful and something that you're going to want to spend ten dollars on. fruit is an easy way to do all of that and distinguish that restaurant and that salad from the competition. so copying that is going to put you ahead of the game and you can tweak it how you like it as you make it.

6/5/14 7:44 A

I also love fruit in salads. Last night I had THE best salad: About 2 cups of mixed baby spinach and romaine lettuce, 1 tablespoon of dried cranberries, 3 oz. of grilled chicken, 1 tablespoon of crumbled gorgonzola cheese, and about 3 tablespoons of toasted walnuts. I highly recommend it. I had toasted the walnuts in a dry pan over medium heat, and eaten warm like, they tasted almost like little pastries.

Canned mandarin oranges are good in a salad as an alternative to frozen or fresh fruit. I drain them and add them to Chinese chicken salads. I'm sure a clever cook could use the juice somehow in a marinade. I'm also looking for a good homeade viniagrette recipe. Until then, I use Ken's Light Northern Italian dressing. It has, I think, only 45 calories for 2 Tbsp. and it has a nice zing to it. Newman's Own Lowfat Sesame Ginger dressing is also excellent, although a little salty.

6/5/14 7:18 A

I often serve frozen fruit, still in a slighty frozen state. Then it doesn't turn to mush. I find it much more appetizing.

Limiting fruit is "not" a standard recommendation for the treatment of high triglycerides. Usually the diet focuses more on achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight, limiting alcohol, limiting sugar and sweets, using a heart health diet and exercising. If you make your nutrition tracker public, we may be able to give more specific suggestions. It is hard to tell from your post "how many" servings of fruit you are getting daily and the quality of the rest of your diet.

Your SP Registered Dietitian

SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (247,333)
Fitness Minutes: (41,424)
Posts: 26,814
6/5/14 6:44 A

Frozen fruit WILL go mushy when thawed. They are best for cooking or in smoothies.

I quite like freshly squeezed orange or tangelo OR the diced fruit, in a lettuce salad that just has diced cucumber and tomato and a little spring onion in it. It is yumm. The fruit is the dressing.

There are measures on SP for frozen fruit - i.e. frozen blueberries; strawberries; blackberries, etc. A 1/2 cup frozen is a true 1/2 cup measure. You can buy nests of measuring cups with 1/4; 1/3; 1/2 etc. Most packets will also give a weight in grams or oz. Buy a digital scale if you don't have one. I find them invaluable and far more accurate. Just make sure that it has a tare weight, can measure oz or grams and goes up in single gram increments, AND has a total weight capacity of at least 5kg. I use that higher weight far more than I thought I would, when I bulk cook. Also, make sure that you always have spare batteries on hand.

Kiwifruit come in 3 colours altho' the red one is very uncommon. The yellow one is more mild and slightly lower in fibre, but more easily tolerated than the green ones if you suffer from Acid Burn. Bananas are great - in baking, on their own, in smoothies, on toast (with a sprinkle of ground cinnamon) frozen and then pureed down in a processor, making a banana ice-cream. They are also great in some beef curries. Apples and pears, including Nashi (Asian Pears) are fantastic. I slice some up into bite sized pieces and take them in a snap-log bag along with a yoghurt and/or nut bar or a few nuts, when I go out for the day. Persimmon are yummy. Most are nice when firm, and also nice when a bit gooey and slushy inside.

Frozen peas are yummy. I used to give my daughter them when she was little and call them 'ice-block' peas. Often they were minted ones. She loved them, but hated cooked peas. Try carrots, celery, courgette, and peppers. Small sticks are a great way to nibble along with some hummus. Broccoli, and cauliflower are also great as crudites. The cauliflower comes in a variety of colours, and the purple one particularly is rather nice with loads of good health benefits.

I often make a pork casserole and dice up apple or put in a small tin of crushed pineapple, along with finely shredded cabbage, diced carrot, red and green capsicums, and diced onion and some red lentils. The fruit gives it a 'sweet/sour' effect, which is enhanced with a little splash of acid - apple cider vinegar is a good one.

A really good way to UP your vege intake is by adding them to your meat in casseroles. I also use veges with roasts. I use a little water in the roasting pan and put some veges in there to cook/caramelize, taking on the meat flavour. I also add in some red lentils. When the meat is cooked and has sat there a few minutes, I remove the meat and then blitz the gravy with a wizz stick. Sometimes I don't need to thicken it any more and it is beautiful as a gravy, but other times I may need to use a little cornflour or plain flour to thicken it a bit more. You can use any veges in there, but it is good to chose the ones that compliment the meat. Egg Plant is another underused vege which is very good for you and versatile in various dishes.

Finally, here is a link to The Mayo Clinic re the Triglycerides:

Take note of the part in the
"What's the best way to lower triglycerides?
Healthy lifestyle choices are key. "

Good luck,

LADYSTARWIND SparkPoints: (83,754)
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6/5/14 1:13 A

On a point for point I have a few suggestions...
1) Fruit on salad. OK...but see 5. You said you know you need more than fruit!! So maybe set a simple rule that every other day you DON"T have fruit in your salad. Its not off limits all the time...just limited better...and you get more of the veggies.
2) No way to unfreeze without getting mushy that I know of. So just partially unfreeze so it still has just a bit of ice crystals for a firmer texture....
3) I just use about 1/2c Olive oil, 1/2 c red Wine Vinegar, and several tablespoons of mashed raspberries.... Play around!! Lots of recipes on Google....
4) I measure it when its still partially frozen in the same plastic 1 cup measure I use for all my cooking needs. Just use a fork to lightly break it up and pack it in. I've never tried by weight, since each item's density is different so the weight would be different. And one cup "volume" is close enough for tracking my fruit calories...
5) I'm not sure, but I don't think the sugar from fruit will affect your triglycerides much. But if you are eating a lot of it and feel you need to limit it, why not try looking at your balance of Carbs/Fats/Proteins. Focus on limiting your overall carbs to less than 50% of your daily intake and increase your protein and fats.... Think nuts, avocados (technically a fruit, but more fats!!), eggs, dairy....
6) RIPE kiwi's are great---rather bitter to me if not ripe/soft....What about melons, bananas, and apples, peaches, pears, grapefruit, etc???
Have Fun expanding your range of fruits AND veggies!!

SARAHMO4 Posts: 335
6/4/14 11:09 P

I have four questions that are all on a similar topic. I thought about doing them one by one but figured this would be easier.

1. Is it weird that I am a lot better about eating salads if their is fruit in them? I don't mind garden or chef salads, The fruit is just what I love and what makes a salad really appealing for me. If its what works for me and is healthy, should I really complain?

2. How do I unfreeze fruit without it turning mushy?? I have tried and this always happens for me. I usually place it in a colander in the sink and let it drain till its not frozen. Any other ways would be great. I always have frozen mixed fruit for smoothies and because its what I eat in salads, its easier and cheaper than buying fresh fruits individually.

3. I need a healthy DIY vinaigrette recipe. I looked at a few bottled vinaigrettes in stores but they are costly and really not that healthy when you look closer at them. A few had the same amounts of calories as full fat/regular dressings and a lot of ingredients. Something that's healthier is the main goal.

4. How do I measure frozen fruit in 1 cup measurements or other measurements like 1/2 cup etc.? I looked it up online but was more confused than when I started. Also how to measure ingredients such as flour for the same measurements would be helpful also. I think its learning to measure by weight more or less instead of volume? I could have that wrong.

5. Now that we know I love fruit, how do I get more veggies in salads or in my diet? My triglycerides are getting close to the high side of normal and fruit does have natural sugar in it. I don't know if I should cut back the fruit, balance the fruit input with another food or what, but I know I need more than just fruit. I need vegetables too and other foods with health benefits.

6. What are other add ins fruit wise besides strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and oranges? I don't like pineapple at all so that's not an option. I also haven't tried kiwis, mangoes, and other less common fruits so maybe those would be options.

Let me know what you think, I will be doing my big shopping trip for the month this Saturday and hope to have a few good ideas so I know what to buy and to look for.

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