OUR TOP TIPS TO A HEALTHY AND TASTY 2017
Since the New Year is just around the corner, we’ve decided to share with you our top Italian cooking tips for 2017, so you can start the New Year in the healthiest way possible!
1. OLIVE OIL IS A MUST
We love olive oil, and think no Italian dish could ever be complete without a drizzle of it. Not only does the oil add depth and flavour to the cooking, but it also brings with it some great health benefits, much better than those of other cooking oils!
We are grateful for all the good stuff that can be found in olive oil. It is filled with healthy fats and plenty of antioxidants, which are all essential to helping your body run smoothly. Antioxidants keep our immune systems strong which in turn helps you to fight off any sort of infection, because who wants to end the festive season full of cold?!
2. ENSURE YOUR PASTA IS COOKED A LA DENTE
When cooking your favourite pasta dish, make sure it’s cooked a la dente, not only does it leave the pasta tasting great; it also means that it’s healthier. The firmer the pasta, the longer the digestion time, which in turn means that your blood sugar levels wont spike quickly and you’ll stay fuller for longer. So next time you order one of our pasta dishes be sure to try it ala dente!
3. COOK FROM SCRATCH
Yes, you heard us correctly, throw away those pre-packaged sauces and bring out the blender! Whether you choose to make your own sauces, or cook your own meatballs – you can rest assured that this is a much healthier way of conjuring up your favourite food. As long as you’ve got a kitchen packed full of your best-tasting herbs, we’re sure you won’t be disappointed in your creation!
4. MAKE YOUR OWN SALAD DRESSING
At Cucina Rustica, we understand that no salad is complete without beautifully fresh vinaigrette drizzled over the top; however we’re also aware how salad dressings can dramatically build up those calories on your healthy salads. To cut those calories, we suggest using good quality balsamic vinegar which will help to reduce the amount of oil you mix with it.
Did you know? Balsamic vinegar is low in calories, so mix it with a little virgin olive oil to replace those creamy salad dressings!
5. EAT MORE FISH
Fish is a very important part of the Italian diet and when you come along to Cucina Rustica, you’ll find an array of fish dishes on our menu, from shellfish to seabass, to lemon sole and cod. As well as being extremely tasty, fish is very good for you as it is in high in protein and contains all the ‘good fats’ including Omega 3.
If you’re cooking fish at home, we would recommend ensuring the oil in the pan is sizzling hot when you add your fish, and following this turn the heat down just slightly. You’ll see the fish go from transparent to opaque before you flip it.
One more thing, when cooking fresh fish at home, we would suggest keeping a window open to avoid the lingering smell following your creation!