Mama Jess NEW Vegetable of the Month Blog: Cruciferous Vegetables

Posted by on Oct 2, 2012 in blog, recipes, Veggie of the Month

Hello Friends –

Fall is one of my favorite times of the year – gorgeous weather, back to routine, back to school and new crops of vegetables in the garden! It is like the fresh start for a lot of us moms and families out there.

Now that the crew here at Mama Jess is back to routine, we are pleased to offer you a new feature this year in our blog: Vegetable of the Month. We are going to highlight some of my favorite and most important veggies. We will teach you a little about why they’re so good for you  and provide a great recipe to get started enjoying them. “EAT MORE VEGGIES!” – Mama Jess would like to shout from the rooftops!


I’m also proud to announce a new addition to our team – Kelly Van Stone. Kelly will be a new contributor to our blog (she’ll be spearheading our Vegetable of the Month Blog) and doing lots of other behind the scene business. Kelly is joining us to share her passion for healthy eating and eating for disease prevention. She comes to us with a great background in Research & Development and biology. Kelly and I share our research background – and I can promise you she’s like a detective when investigating food myths, fads and advice. Her best testament to healthy eating is no doubt her clean eating lifestyle (an being a mom to two little cuties).  Happy to introduce you all to Kelly.


Eat your veggies,

Mama Jess





Mama Jess’s Featured Vegetable Group of the Month – Cruciferous Vegetables


Here at Mama Jess we are constantly trying to find new ways to incorporate the best of nature’s most wholesome foods into our diet.  We thought that an awesome reminder to do this is to feature a vegetable group of the month in the blog.  What better way to educate ourselves on the nutritional power of whole foods!  We will also include a delicious new recipe for you to try out with your families.


We all know that eating a variety of fruits and vegetables each day is key to good nutritional health.  However, did you know that certain vegetables have very specific health benefits.  Hippocrates was right when he stated, ‘Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food’!


This month we will focus on the wonderful and powerful group of Cruciferous Vegetables.  This veggie group includes the most popular and well known broccoli and cauliflower, but also brussels sprouts, cabbage, and even arugula, kale, and watercress.  Cruciferous vegetables are especially rich nutritionally, are anti-inflammatory and rich in glucosinolates (which are powerful cancer fighters). The glucosinolates detoxify carcinogenic substances and can also destroy cancer cells.  Basically, they are a nutritional powerhouses.


The good news is that this group contains a wide variety of vegetables.  Here is a more thorough list of cruciferous vegetables that will allow you to choose a variety throughout the week:


Horseradish                               Kale

Collard Greens                           Cabbage (Napa & Chinese)

Brussels Sprouts                        Kohlrabi

Broccoli                                       Cauliflower

Bok Choy                                     Turnip

Rutabaga                                     Mustard Seeds

Arugula                                        Watercress

Radish                                          Wasabi
I especially appreciate the inclusion of wasabi at the end, what a great excuse to eat sushi with a side of wasabi!


Ideally, two servings of cruciferous vegetables should be included in your diet daily (1 ½ – 2 cups per serving for an adult).  If you are able to get in one serving raw and one cooked serving of these vegetables in a day, that would be even better.  However, just getting some into your daily diet would be above and beyond what most Americans consume on a regular basis.  Even as a nutritionally conscious mom and cook, I find it hard to incorporate two servings of these vegetables into my daily diet.  This month I will work toward this goal myself and hope you will too.


Just by adding a steamed or roasted cauliflower to your dinner with an arugula salad, or a cabbage salad and side of steamed broccoli you can meet your new nutritional goal of incorporating two servings of these vegetables into your diet!  I find it much more manageable to include a veggie that I am familiar with with one that I am not as familiar with.  Eventually you will be acquainted with most of the veggies in this group.


As I was researching cruciferous vegetables for the blog, I was excited to find such interesting recipes.  There are plenty of recipes for roasted brussels sprouts, broccoli and cauliflower, which are always a favorite of mine.


Until next time!


Kelly Van Stone

Mama Jess contributor