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Pumpkin Spice and Everything Nice: Fall Favorites that Work Wonders In Urologic Health

When October hits, you feel it. It’s that undeniable sensation that fall is upon us. It’s in the air. And on the mind. And in all the things. From Pumpkin Spice Lattes to Pumpkin Purees, Soups, Muffins and Stews, there is an undeniable, insatiable relationship between the launch of the holiday season and savory root vegetable recipes, largely of the gourd variety. The great news? These dishes which we have all come to love (and crave come October 1st) are full of rich, earthy flavor and jam-packed with many urology-friendly benefits.

Here’s Why:

Winter produce options, like butternut squash and acorn squash and pumpkins, (which are actually fruit, not a veggie), are nutritious, delicious, and bonus: they have several links to positive health correlations with urologic conditions!  For example: A cup of butternut squash contains almost half the daily amount of Vitamin C that won’t feel acidic in a sensitive IC bladder, nearly 300% of Vitamin A, as well as B-6, iron, calcium and magnesium. Further, butternut squash contains Vitamin A which helps to maintain the cells lining the airways, urinary and digestive tracts and is also one of the best sources of beta-cryptoxanthin, a carotenoid linked to lower risks of lung and prostate cancer, as well as to improved joint health. Also, both pumpkin and butternut squash contain needed grams of dietary fiber helping to promote regularity. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, one cup of butternut squash contains 3 grams of dietary fiber. Fiber can add bulk and weight to your stools to decrease your risk of constipation. Also, those with watery stools can help solidify their stools with added fiber in the diet. So not only are these seasonal delights scrumptious, they are also overloaded with essential vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and nutrients essential for great overall and urology specific health while being surprisingly low in calories. And who isn’t trying to watch their calorie intake around the holidays?

While there are truly thousands of countless recipes to try some fun flavor combos with winter fruit and veggies, two of our favorites are outlined below. The mouth-watering Roasted Root Vegetables Five Ways by Kris Carr and Chad Sarno in Crazy Sexy Kitchen (2012) is one of our all time go to’s on any chilly fall night while the Pumpkin Ravioli with Sage Brown Butter by Southern Living (October 2018) is fully what we intend to cook this Halloween.

Roasted Root Vegetables Five Ways: by Kris Carr and Chef Chad Charno, Page 210 in Crazy Sexy Kitchen, 2012.

Roasted Root Vegetables Five Ways: Serves 4 to 6.

Ingredients:

1 butternut squash, peeled

1 large yam, peeled

3 carrots, peeled

3 red potatoes, peeled

1 small head cauliflower

¼ cup olive oil

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

1 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce

Instructions:

1 Preheat Oven to 425 Degrees.

2 Wash all of the vegetables.

3 Cut vegetables into medium chunks

4 Place vegetables in a single, even layer on a baking sheet.

5 Drizzle the olive oil over the veggies and sprinkle with the salt and pepper.

6 Toss well to make sure they are evenly coated.

7 Bake 25 to 35 minutes stirring a few times and rotating the pan.

8 Pull the pan from the oven and toss veggies with the BBQ Sauce.

9 Return pan to the oven and bake a few more minutes.

10 When the veggies are tender, they are ready to remove from the pan. Enjoy!

*Tip: Add in chopped flesh from one small cooking pumpkin (such as ) for extra flavor and increased urologic health benefits. May need ½ cup more of your favorite BBQ to coat all roasted veggies.

Pumpkin Ravioli with Sage Brown Butter From Southern Living October 2018 : Serves 4

Ingredients:

2 sage sprigs, divided

½ cup butter

3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 ¼ cups canned pumpkin

3 oz. Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated (about ¾ cup)

2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

½ tsp. Kosher salt

1 10 oz. pkg. wonton wrappers (48 wrappers)

1 large egg, lightly beaten

Instructions:

1 Finely chop leaves from 1 sage sprig to equal about 1 tablespoon. COmbine chopped sage and butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. Cook, swirling occasionally until butter is lightly browned and fragrant, about 4 to 5 minutes. Remove half of butter-sage mixture from skillet; combine with 2 tablespoons of the oil in a small bowl ad set aside. Remove skillet from heat and add pumpkin, Parmigiano-Reggiano, lemon juice, and salt to skillet, stirring to combine.

2 Place 8 wonton wrappers on a cutting board. Brush outside edges with some of the beaten egg. Place 1 rounded tablespoon of pumpkin filling in center of each wrapper, leaving a ½ inch border around the edge. Place a second wrapper on top, pressing the edges together to seal. Press gently on filling to spread evenly. Move ravioli to a tray, and cover with plastic wrap. Repeat procedure with remaining wonton wrappers, beaten egg, and pumpkin mixture.

3 Remove leaves from remaining sage sprig. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a small skillet over medium-high. Add sage leaves to skillet; cook until crispy, 2 to 3 seconds. Remove from skillet and set aside.

4 Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high. Add half of the ravioli to pot, adding 1 at a time. Cook until ravioli are tender, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from water with a slotted spoon and drain excess water. Transfer cooked ravioli to a plate. Repeat procedure with remaining ravioli. Divide cooked ravioli evenly among four plates and drizzle with reserved sage brown butter-and-oil mixture. Garnish servings with crispy sage leaves.

*Tip: Follow steps 1 - 3 and make the pumpkin ravioli  but store in sealed, air tight container ahead of time so it’s one less thing to worry about when prepping for any of your planned festivities the night of. Then jump right to step 4 and serve!

Author
Lauren Rogers

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