In the news: Old Capitol Food Company!
Three young Iowa City entrepreneurs hope to create a new market using one of the state’s biggest resources: soybeans.
Read the full article in the Iowa-City Press-Citizen here.
Creamy Apple Vinaigrette with Baby Spinach, Candied Walnuts, Green Apple and Goat Cheese
1 pound Mori-Nu soft silken tofu
½ cup apple juice
½ cup plus apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons white onion, minced
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon white pepper
¾ cup soybean oil
16 ounces baby spinach
1 cup candied walnuts
2 green apples, diced
6 ounces goat cheese, crumbles
Directions for Dressing:
Add first 8 ingredients to food processor or blender. Blend until smooth. Slowly add oil to mixture and blend until smooth and mixture has thickened. Refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight so the flavors can meld.
Directions for Salad:
Add ingredients for salad into serving bowl. Top with dressing. Enjoy
Yield: 10 servings
February is Heart Health Month. Here are 5 reasons to include heart-healthy soyfoods daily.
This month (and every month!) the perfect time to make sure you’re including one or two servings of soy protein daily. It’s easy! Here are a few ideas:
See? It’s so easy to include one or two servings of soy protein daily for a healthier heart…and lifestyle.
Ankeny, Iowa, January 24, 2017—Valentine’s Day entertaining is a way to express your love for family, friends or that special someone in your life. When you’re preparing romantic celebration foods, show your love with appetizers, drinks and desserts that offer a better-for-you profile. Soyfoods are a good choice because they provide nutrient-dense plant-based protein. They’re versatile, affordable ingredients that make it easy to update your favorite recipes.
Speaking of Valentine’s Day and hearts, remember that February is also American Heart Month. According to the American Heart Association, in the past several decades fewer Americans have been dying of heart disease and stroke, due to progress in medical therapies for patients with a history of these conditions and from lifestyle changes that help curb the risk. For instance, foods with plant-based soy protein can help lower blood cholesterol levels. In addition, soybean isoflavones may reduce heart disease risk independent of cholesterol levels by directly improving the health of arteries.
One serving of soyfoods—including soymilk, edamame and tofu—provides approximately 7 to 15 grams of high-quality plant-based protein. Unlike many commonly consumed protein-rich foods, soyfoods are also cholesterol-free and low in saturated fat. Best of all, soyfoods lend themselves to lots of creative appetizer combos that are just right for serving at Valentine’s Day get-togethers.
The Tempeh Avocado Sushi Roll can kick off any Valentine’s Day celebration with style as guests make their own sushi. Ingredients—available in most large supermarkets— include tempeh (fermented soybean cakes with a mushroom-like flavor) and nori (seaweed sheets), sushi rice, seasoned rice wine vinegar with a little sugar added, soy sauce, avocado and chives. Recipe: Tempeh Avocado Sushi Roll with Soy Dipping Sauce
Another romantic recipe that appeals to adventurous eaters is Tofu and Shrimp Ceviche, served in decorative glassware and garnished with tortilla chips. The appetizer features firm, pressed tofu, shrimp, diced fresh pineapple, lime juice, chopped onion and jalapeno, and chopped cilantro leaves, if desired, and hot sauce to taste.
Have fun with romantic Valentine’s drinks featuring soymilk, such as a soy-rich recipe for Soy Irish Cream Liqueur. Make your own by combining sweetened condensed milk, half-and-half dairy milk and soymilk, flavored with a little chocolate syrup and vanilla extract, then mixed with Irish whiskey and rum. Or, for a whimsical touch, serve an Edamame Martini
with an edamame and tofu-cube garnish as a reminder to include a serving of soyfoods in your diet every day. (A cocktail garnish won’t do it though: For one serving, you’ll need ½ cup of tofu or ½ cup of edamame.) Made in a cocktail shaker, the martini incorporates vodka, cucumber juice, yuzu or lemon juice and simple syrup. Make the garnish by threading a toothpick with 4 to 6 shelled edamame and one small cube of extra-firm pressed tofu wrapped in a slice of pickled ginger.
Sun dried tomato dip is just right for serving with fresh vegetables or crackers. Start with a mix of soft tofu and softened cream cheese, then add ranch dressing seasoning mix, chopped marinated sundried tomatoes, minced onion and garlic powder. The dip is done in a minute when you make it in a food processor or blender. Just chill it for an hour and you’re ready to start a memorable celebration.
And what’s Valentine’s Day without chocolate? The Soyfoods Council offers recipes for easy chocolate-rich desserts such as Chocolate Mousse made with silken tofu, cocoa powder and other flavorings, or Vegan Dark Chocolate Truffles, made with silken tofu, melted dark chocolate chips, maple syrup and vanilla extract.
The Soyfoods Council knows that healthful eating isn’t your main objective on Valentine’s Day, but isn’t it satisfying to know that soyfoods and simple soy recipes are so readily available for anyone who has their heart set on making wise dietary choices? The Soyfoods Council offers a wide variety of recipes for entertaining, as well as healthful appetizer ideas the whole family will enjoy.
About the Soyfoods Council: The Soyfoods Council is a non-profit organization, created and funded by Iowa soybean farmers, providing a complete resource to increase awareness of soyfoods, educate and inform media, healthcare professionals, consumers and the retail and foodservice market about the many benefits of soyfoods. Iowa is the country’s number one grower of soybeans and is the Soyfoods Capital of the world.
About the Role of Soyfoods in a Healthful Diet: Soyfoods have played an important role in Asian cuisines for centuries. In recent years they have become popular in Western countries because of their nutrition and health properties. Soyfoods are excellent sources of high-quality protein and provide a healthy mix of polyunsaturated fat. In addition, independent of their nutrient content, there is very intriguing evidence indicating soyfoods reduce risk of several chronic diseases including coronary heart disease, osteoporosis and certain forms of cancer. All individuals are well advised to eat a couple of servings of soyfoods every day.
Fat is back. Not that it ever really went away. Even when very low-fat diets were all the rage, experts recognized that certain fats were more harmful than others and some were even beneficial.
A common misperception is that omega-6 polyunsaturated fats, which are found in abundant amounts in most oils, including soybean oil, are pro-inflammatory. Meanwhile, it is thought that omega-3 polyunsaturated fats protect against inflammation. Chronic inflammation is believed to be a key process underlying many chronic diseases.
Back in the late 1970s, researchers suggested that the low incidence of heart disease among the Inuit of Canada and Alaska was related to their fat intake.1 Specifically, this population eats a diet high in the omega-3 fatty acid eicosanoic acid from fish and low in the omega-6 fatty acid arachidonic acid which is found in other types of meat.
The findings put omega-3 fats in the spotlight, giving rise to the popularity of fish oil supplements. But evidence in support of the health benefits of omega-3 fat has never been as consistent as anticipated. In fact, recent commentaries published in two distinguished medical journals reached completely opposite conclusions about the benefits of omega-3 fat supplementation.2,3
Likewise, the harmful effects of saturated fat have been brought into question recently. It is now recognized that while saturated fat raises LDL-cholesterol, it also increases LDL particle size; large LDLs are less atherogenic than small LDLs.4 Nevertheless, prospective epidemiologic studies clearly show that replacing saturated fat with omega-6 polyunsaturated fat reduces CHD risk and mortality.5,6 And in the end, it’s this relevant endpoint—heart disease—that matters.
While replacing saturated fat with complex carbohydrates also reduces risk, the beneficial effects are smaller compared to omega-6 fats. Which raises this question: If omega-6 fats increase inflammation why would replacing saturated fat with omega-6 fat reduce CHD risk?
Part of the explanation is that omega-6 fats reduce serum LDL-cholesterol. More importantly, despite the common perception, the proinflammatory effects of omega-6 fat aren’t very well established. In fact, a systematic review of clinical trials published in 2012 concluded that there is “virtually no evidence” from clinical trials that linoleic acid, the main dietary omega-6 fat, increases concentrations of inflammatory markers in healthy people.7
This finding may seem surprising since it is thought that in vivo, linoleic acid is converted into arachidonic acid, the omega-6 fat from which the alleged proinflammatory hormones (eicosanoids) are produced. However, extensive clinical research shows that increasing linoleic acid intake has little effect on endogenous levels of arachidonic acid.8 Furthermore, not all of the eicosanoids produced from arachidonic acid are pro-inflammatory.9
These findings will hopefully change the way that different fats and oils are viewed in healthy diets. Until the dust settles, it’s clear that soybean oil is a choice that provides the best of all worlds, since it is rich in both omega-6 and omega-3 fats. While ideally most dietary fat should come from whole foods, added fats and oils can play important culinary roles.
~ Mark Messina, PhD, Executive Director, Soy Nutrition Institute
Nick Lucs, the man behind the popular blog Des Moines Foodster, joins us in 2017 to share soy-inspired finds throughout the city.
Vivian’s is an upscale but casual dining experience located in downtown Des Moines,IA at 4th and Walnut.
Jeff Duncan is the owner and the creator of Vivian’s Diner and Drinks. He has over 28 years of restaurant and catering experience in the Iowa, Chicago, and Florida markets. He was born and raised in Des Moines and has been back in this market for 11 years.
Jeff’s great, supportive family includes his wife and 5 children, one of which is 4 year old Vivian whom the restaurant is named after!
Vivian’s is his pride and joy; it has been Jeff’s dream to combine a modern diner type restaurant with Midwest quality and menu items with an upscale casual feel to Des Moines for a number of years.
The location is perfect in the heart of downtown in an historic hotel. Inside, you’ll find a beautifully, remodeled interior all done by Jeff and his wife. They personally describe it as, “clean lines, open ceiling, and light colors, we have added elements of wood, glass, stainless steel, sparkling tile and high-end polished fixtures.”
This is all very true.
The ambiance of the restaurant sets the stage for a relaxing dinner.
Lately, I have been really enjoying hanging out at Vivian’s bar before my dinner reservation. It’s also a great place to catch drinks after work or before a Des Moines Civic Center Show. It’s tough to pass up Vivian’s happy hour drink specials (drinks ranging $3-$6) until 6pm. Sip on a gin and tonic, one of my favorites, or grab a local beer off of the tap wall. Pizzas are also on special during this time and I highly recommend pairing one of them with a beverage….
Stress no more! A colleague and friend of The Soyfoods Council, Gail Bellamy, developed this recipe for a group she was entertaining.
Gail reported it was a huge hit, in fact, guests wanted to lick the liqueur glasses clean! If you don’t want to use Bailey’s, feel free to use another flavoring such as vanilla. The salted caramel chips are heavenly…what a great idea!…
The Soyfoods Council is an affiliate of the Iowa Soybean Association. The mission of The Soyfoods Council is to serve as a catalyst, leader and facilitator to mainstream soy-based foods into the global marketplace—America and beyond. To mainstream soyfoods: to build the category of soyfoods products by making action-prompting connections between edible soybean growers and food producers, foods distributors, chefs, retailers and eventually consumers.