Monday, December 26, 2011

Myth proven!

Pin It Have you ever heard of the sayings "You are what you eat" or "If you eat too many carrots, you'll turn orange"?  I used to never believe those silly sayings until I actually became what I ate and turned orange...
Yep.  That's right I became a carrot.  An orange carrot.  It was my mom who noticed first while we were in the car on the way to my grandparents house for Thanksgiving.  I didn't believe her at first until I compared my hands to my sisters.  I was definitely orange.  After she noticed, my mom started quizing me on what I had been eating.  I had just made soma big batch of squash stew, I love carrots as a snack between class, and I love having a little squash with brown sugar and cinnamon for a bed snack (I'm weird I know).   It's hard to cook for just one person, so I had been eating my squash stew 1-2 times a day for a good week or so.  I guess you could say I over did it on the beta-carotene a little bit, hence why I turned orange.  I did some researching and learned that overdosing can cause hypercarotenaemia. “Hypercarotenaemia is the consequence of high serum carotenoid levels, which are deposited in the stratum corneum and give a yellowish coloration to the skin. It can be distinguished from jaundice by the absence of colouring of the conjunctivae [whites of eyes and surrounding mucus membranes] as well as orange discolouration of the palms and soles.” Source Université François-Rabelais, Tours, France.  It  lasts for a few months and is recommeneded to limit the amount of beta-carotene in one's diet for awhile.  It's hard than I thought it would be!  Carrots, bell peppers, pumpkin, and squash are some of my favorite foods/snacks...all which have high levels of beta-carotene in them.  Well enough about me and onto the recipe.  I am going to share my squash stew recipe with you today, but you have to promise me not to over do it. Haha!

4 cups Butternut squash, peeled and cubbed
4 packets Herb Ox instant chicken broth & seasoning sodium free
6 cups Water
1 lb Venision chops
1 1/2  cups Onion, chopped
Olive oil cooking spray
3 medium Garlic cloves
Italian seasoning
1 can Diced italian style tomatos
1 cup dry red lentils
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Steam half of the squash in the microwave in a covered dish with a little water for 8 minutes or until slightly tender.   Remove from dish and set aside.
2. Steam the other half of the squash for 12 minutes or until very tender.  Mash with a fork and set aside.
3. Wisk together chicken broth packets and water in a large pot over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer.
4. Add thawed venison to the broth and let simmer for about 15 minutes.
5. Pull venison out to cool and remove broth from heat.
6. In a skillet cook onion with a little olive oil cooking spray over medium heat until the onions are tender and starting to brown.
7. Mince the garlic and add to the onions along with some italian seasoning to your liking. Cook mixture another minute or so.
8. Add the tomatos and the mashed squash to the broth and  bring back to a simmer over medium-low heat.
9. Add in the onion mixture and the red lentils and cook until the lentils are tender but not mushy.  Use lentil cooking directions to help with cooking time.
10.  In the meantime shred the venison with your fingers or a fork.
11. Add the remaining squash and venison to the stew and cook until heated thoroughly.
12. Season to taste.
Makes about 11 cups.

Nutrition Facts:
Calories: 171
Total Fat: 1.4 g
     Sat. Fat: 0.5 g
Cholesterol: 46.1 mg
Sodium: 158.2 mg
Potassium: 302 mg
Total Carbs: 21.9 mg
     Dietary Fiber: 3.3 g
     Sugars: 4.8 g
Protein: 18.5 g
Vitamin A: 169.5% (This right here explains why I turned orange.  169.5% of my daily vitamin A (beta-carotene) in just one serving of this!  That means I was getting between 300-400% of my daily value multiple days in a row...whoops!)
Vitamin C: 28.4%
Calcium: 5.7%
Iron: 9.5%

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