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Publix GreenWise Market Magazine - November 2007

The Hum on Hummus

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HummusThe traditional version of this thick Middle Eastern dip is made from mashed garbanzo beans (chickpeas) and seasoned with lemon juice, garlic, olive or sesame oil and tahini, a sesame-seed paste. This basic homemade hummus or any of its many variations packs some healthy vegetable protein, contains disease-fighting phytosterols and antioxidants, and is a source of dietary fiber and vitamin B6.

It's great served with raw veggies, pita triangles or low-fat baked pita crisps. You can garnish a plate of hummus with toasted pine nuts, halved grape tomatoes, sliced cucumber, rings of sweet onion, mint leaves, chopped parsley, roasted red pepper slices, whole garbanzo beans, olives or roasted garlic cloves.

TO PREPARE: Blend the following ingredients in a food processor until smooth: 1 undrained 15-ounce can of Publix GreenWise Market Organic Garbanzo Beans; ¼ cup tahini (sesame seed paste); 1 tablespoon lemon juice; 2 to 4 cloves fresh garlic, finely chopped; ¼ teaspoon salt; and ¼ to ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, if desired. Makes 6 servings.

Nutrition Facts per serving: 123 cal., 5 g total fat (1 g sat. fat), 0 mg chol., 326 mg sodium, 14 g carbo., 4 g dietary fiber, 5 g protein.

Capitalize on Cranberries
Calling all cranberry lovers! These tart, ruby-red jewels are now in season. Not only do they add zing to baked goods, stuffing, pies, sauces and beverages, they're also chock-full of antioxidants and nutrients. Plus, they may help prevent urinary tract infections, ulcers and gum disease, according to Jeannie Moloo, R.D. and spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. "Health benefits can be achieved by drinking cranberry juice or eating cranberries dried, fresh or cooked into sauce," she says.

Take advantage of healthful cranberries by buying them fresh now and freezing them for use throughout the year. You can put a 12-ounce bag of prepackaged fresh cranberries, which contains about 3 cups of berries, directly into the freezer. Or you can place berries in airtight storage bags or containers, seal tightly and freeze. First pick out any leaves, stems or bruised berries. Do not wash berries before freezing. Frozen cranberries will retain nutrients and stay fresh for up to nine months. They can be substituted for fresh cranberries in recipes.

LEARN MORE: For cranberry nutrition information and recipes, visit (the Cranberry Institute) and (the Cape Cod Cranberry Growers' Association).

The Spicy Truth About Oregano
Whether you're making pasta sauce or tossing together a Greek salad, oregano is a must for authentic Mediterranean flavor. But did you know it's also an antioxidant powerhouse? Researchers at the Department of Agriculture's Henry A. Wallace Beltsville Agricultural Research Center found that, ounce for ounce, fresh oregano has 42 times more antioxidant activity than apples, 30 times more than potatoes and 12 times more than oranges. Among the potent antioxidants found in fresh oregano are beta-carotene, myristic acid and quercetin.

Below are some quick ideas for making foods more delicious and nutritious with oregano. When using dried oregano, keep in mind that drying intensifies the flavor, so you'll need less than when you use the fresh herb.

  • Stir chopped fresh oregano into nearly any starchy side dish: stuffing, couscous, rice, polenta or garlic mashed potatoes.
  • Rub chicken with a little butter or olive oil and chopped fresh oregano right before grilling.
  • Process fresh oregano, spinach, olive oil and Parmesan cheese to make a tasty pesto topper for bruschetta or pasta.
  • Add tomatoes and snipped fresh oregano to scrambled eggs.
  • Knead bits of fresh oregano into bread dough or stir into biscuit dough.
  • Combine fresh or dried oregano with low-fat sour cream or mayonnaise to make a tasty and fragrant sandwich spread.
  • Snip oregano into a mixture of tofu and ricotta cheese and stuff manicotti shells; top with marinara sauce.
  • Sprinkle oregano, feta cheese and olives onto a Mediterranean-style pizza.
  • Toss oregano into salads - green, potato, bean or pasta.
For more cooking ideas, visit and search for "oregano" in Aprons Simple Meals.
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