Archive | August, 2011

Eat for Flavor – September is Fruit & Vegetable Month

By Lexington Medical Center‘s Susan Wilkerson, RD LD

Most fruits and vegetables are naturally low in calories and provide healthy nutrients and dietary fiber. They may also play a role in preventing a variety of chronic diseases.

But what is the best reason to eat fruits and vegetables? Because they TASTE so good! Fruits and vegetables are colorful, sweet, pungent, crispy, soft and/or juicy with flavors that play with our palates. Select fruits and vegetable when they are in season because they offer the best flavor when they are at their ripest. Buy from the farmer’s market or local farmers to ensure that they are at their ripest. If you buy them at the supermarket on sale, check where they are grown- the closer the better.

Melons are in season now. Melons are large, so how do you use them before they are past their prime?

Here’s an idea:

Cut cantaloupe into bite size pieces. Or use a melon ball scoop to make the pieces look nice. Add some fresh blueberries and chopped mint. I like chocolate mint from my garden. Add low fat vanilla yogurt to coat. And you have a fresh side dish, quick after school snack for the kids or a very flavorful breakfast treat.

Corn – It’s In Season, Versatile, and Good for You!

by Donna Quirk, MBA RD LD
LMC Clinical Nutrition Manager

One of the great late summer in-season vegetables is corn. Corn is believed to have been originally cultivated in central Mexico more than 7,000 years ago. Today it is grown on almost every continent in the world.

Corn is nutritious providing about 10% of the daily value of folate, thiamin, phosphorus, vitamin C, and magnesium. It is also a source of fiber and antioxidants. Popcorn is a whole-grain and, if air-popped or prepared with a small amount of oil, can be a nutritious snack.

When choosing fresh corn, it is best to look for corn stored in a refrigerated bin. If you are at a roadside stand, corn should be displayed out of direct sunlight. Overexposure to heat can encourage bacterial growth. Store corn in an air-tight container or tightly wrapped plastic bag in the refrigerator if you do not intend to cook it on the day of purchase. Do not remove its husk since this will protect its flavor.

Corn is so versatile – it can be eaten off the husk, as a side dish, and added to soups, salads, salsas, pizza, and breads.

This corn soup recipe is one of my favorites.

Sweet Corn Soup with Poblano Puree
Serves 4 Hands-on Time: 30 mins. Total Time: 40 mins.

1 poblano pepper
2 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons low-sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 small onion, chopped
5 cups fresh yellow corn kernels (from about 10 ears)
salt and black pepper
1/4 cup light sour cream

1. Heat broiler. On a broilerproof baking sheet, broil the pepper, turning occasionally, until charred, 8 to 12 minutes. Wrap in a paper towel; let cool for 10 minutes. Use the paper towel to slide off the skin. Remove the seeds.
2. In a blender, puree the pepper with 2 tablespoons of the chicken broth; transfer to a bowl. Rinse out the blender.
3. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender (do not let it brown), 8 to 10 minutes.
4. Add the corn, the remaining 2½ cups of chicken broth, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the corn is tender, 10 to 15 minutes.
5. In the blender, working in batches, puree the soup until smooth, adjusting the consistency with water as necessary.
6. Serve the soup with a dollop of light sour cream and the poblano puree.

You can refrigerate the soup and the poblano puree (separately) for up to 2 days. Warm over medium heat until heated through.

Nutritional Information

Calories 257; Fat 11g; SatFat 5.5g; Cholesterol 25mg; Sodium 355mg; Protein 9g;
Carbohydrate 38g; Sugar 7g; Fiber 6g; Iron 1mg; Calcium 19mg
Adapted from Joan Munson’s Sweet White Corn Soup with Poblano Puree from

USC Baseball Coach Ray Tanner Delivers Home Run at LMC Foundation Dinner

USC’s back-to-back College World Series winning baseball Coach Ray Tanner graciously spoke at a sold-out dinner for the Lexington Medical Center Foundation this week. More than 1,000 people attended the event, which benefits cancer patients at Lexington Medical Center.

During the dinner, Coach Tanner received a “Key to the Midlands” from mayors in Lexington and Richland counties. Here is video of news coverage from WIS.

And here are some photos.