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Network : Fresh Tastes
: Nov 2001
Traditional Holiday Vegetables
Are Bladder Friendly
a perfect month for taking stock of the good things and good people
in our lives. And perhaps this year more than ever, those of us
with IC need a day of Thanksgiving to relax, de-stress, and to help
us refocus on the good things and the supportive relationships in
families will be sitting down together not only to enjoy a holiday
feast but to experience togetherness. Many of us will be serving
foods our grandmothers made according to old family recipes. Some
of these family favorites feature foods of North American origin,
such as roast turkey, corn,
or maple syrup. Others are made according to exotic recipes handed
down from ancestors in the "old country". In the cultural
melting pot that is America, each family has its own uniquely blended
culinary heritage. This year at Thanksgiving, say those who follow
such trends, tradition will be definitely "in" and novelty
will be "out". Old family recipes and foods of North American
origin will be prominent on our tables at Thanksgiving this year.
one of the most traditional American dishes served at this time
of year is cranberry sauce. Cranberries, though in recent years
advised for people with bladder infections, are extremely acid.
They're definitely not advised for people with IC because they are
guaranteed to give IC bladders hours or
days of misery. Other foods-- turkey, mashed potatoes, and sweet
potatoes for instance, traditionally served at Thanksgiving and
other times during the winter months, are fairly safe for IC bladders.
Yams and sweet
potatoes (they're different vegetables altogether) are tasty sweet
treats that manyof us think of as "comfort food" and are
most often served during the winter months. Invariably baked with
sweetly pungent spices they give a delicious scent to the whole
house when they are baking. Sweet potatoes, by the way, are great
sources of vitamin A (they have more than carrots). They're also
a good source of fiber, which for us is important because dietary
fiber can help offset the constipating effects of antihistamines,
tricyclic antidepressants and prescription painkillers.
Ever wonder what
it is that makes leaves red and yellow in autumn? It's carotenoids,
the same family of plant pigments that color yellow fruits and vegetables.
It's the carotenoids in fruits like apricots and peaches and vegetables
like yams and sweet potatoes, that gives us vitamin A. Although they
are frequently seen on tables at Thanksgiving, Americans eat less
sweet potatoes these days than we used to. In rural America in the
19th century, root crops such as these were stored after harvest in
a "root cellar" a small space under the house where the
cool air kept these vegetables fresh for months. During long winters,
sweet potatoes were a source of vitamins A, C, and pantothenic acid
(a nutrient that helps our body's cells make energy). Here is a simple
but very tasty recipe for fresh sweet potatoes. It's based on one
I acquired many years ago from an elderly lady in New Hampshire. In
the northeastern U.S., maple sugar is a favorite sweetener.
Maple Baked Sweet
servings : 3 or 4
2 fresh sweet
potatoes (not yams)
1/4 cup stick margarine
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 dash nutmeg
margarine, vegetable oil, or non-stick cooking spray
Coat a 1-1/2
quart casserole dish with margarine or non-stick cooking spray,
or lightly coat with vegetable oil. Peel sweet potatoes and slice
in half-inch thick slices. Melt margarine in a saucepan then stir
in maple syrup, almond extract, and nutmeg, mixing thoroughly. Toss
potato slices in the liquid mixture to coat. Spoon slices into the
casserole dish, pouring remaining liquid over them. Cover and bake
at 400 degrees F. for 35 minutes or until potato slices are soft.
While yams are
an entirely different root vegetable from sweet potatoes, we often
think of them as being the same because they can substitute so easily
for each other in recipes. This is a quick-to-make recipe for yams.
The fruit used in this recipe can be varied according to your bladder's
sensitivity. Of course the safest fruit for us are pears, but apricots
and peaches can be delicious in this recipe if your bladder can
tolerate them. If your family would prefer peaches or apricots,
you might also try this: use peaches on half the dish and pears
on the other half (or make your serving separately with pears).
Yam and Fruit Bake
2 pounds canned
or cooked yams, sliced about 3/4-inch thick
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/3 cup chopped cashews (optional)
1/4 teaspoon dried ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 8-oz can sliced pears, peaches or apricots
3 Tbsp. stick butter or margarine
and slice. Combine brown sugar, chopped cashews, ginger and salt.
In a 10 x 6 or 10-inch square baking dish, layer sliced yams and
half of the pears. Cover with half the brown sugar mixture. Repeat
with the other half of the ingredients. With a knife, shave thin
pieces of butter from the stick and scatter across the top of the
casserole. Bake covered, at 350 degrees F. For 30 minutes. Uncover
and bake 10 minutes more. Spoon some of the sugar syrup over the
yams before serving.
all the nuts, almonds and cashews are the only ones well tolerated
by IC bladders. However, some people can't even tolerate those.
Also, ginger is a pungent spice and in large amounts may not be
tolerated by IC bladders. The amount in this mild recipe is very
small and usually well-tolerated, but be careful if you increase
the amount. If your bladder is extremely sensitive and you know
that any amount of ginger bothers your bladder, you can substitute
half a teaspoon of cinnamon for the ginger. Let your bladder's experience
be your guide.