Don’t Forget to Toss in the Cilantro
Cilantro is an all-star, flavor-forward herb that not only packs a powerful punch to your plate, but has been used medicinally for thousands of years, according to WebMD.1 This green leafy herb performs well with Mexican (see the taco recipe below) or Thai dishes. It also tastes delicious with entrees that contain beans, cheese, eggs and fish. Use it as a topping for soups and salad to boost the flavor. Pick it up at the grocery store, farmer’s market or grow your own (cilantro thrives in a small pot in the windowsill).
Potential health benefits of cilantro
Here are a few reasons to add cilantro to your diet:
- Improve skin health: According to Medical News Today2, a study looked at the extracts from the herb and found it can prevent or reduce sun damage in skin.
- Lower blood sugar: Cilantro is known for its ability to lower blood sugar. “In animal studies, coriander seeds reduced blood sugar by stimulating an enzyme that removes sugar from the blood,” according to WebMD.3
- Stop foodborne illnesses: The herb contains an antimicrobial compound that could help defend your body against infections and illnesses from spoiled food, notes WebMD.4
Make any night taco night: Soft tacos with vegetables
Check out this meal from Mayo Clinic’s5 list of healthy recipes.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium red onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
1 cup diced yellow summer squash
1 cup diced green zucchini
3 large garlic cloves, minced
4 medium tomatoes, seeded and chopped (about 2 cups)
1 jalapeno chili, seeded and chopped
1 cup fresh corn kernels (about 2 ears of corn) or 1 cup frozen corn
1 cup canned pinto or black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
8 whole-wheat tortillas
1/2 cup smoke-flavored salsa
In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until soft. Add the summer squash and zucchini, and continue cooking until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic, tomatoes, jalapeno, corn and beans. Cook until the vegetables are tender-crisp, about 5 minutes. Add the cilantro and remove from the heat.
Heat a large frying pan (without a nonstick surface) over medium heat. Add 1 tortilla to the hot pan and heat until softened — about 20 seconds a side. Repeat with the remaining tortillas.
To serve, divide the tortillas among individual plates. Scoop an equal amount of the vegetable mixture onto each tortilla. Top each with 2 tablespoons of the salsa. Serve immediately.