LAST week I completed my discussion about macro-minerals. This week I want to discuss micro-minerals, these minerals have a less than a five gram presence in the average human body.
Iron: Is the most abundant micro-mineral and is needed in red blood cells that transport oxygen and carbon dioxide in and out of the body. Meat fish, poultry and enriched cereals and grains are the main sources.
Copper: Is needed for the absorption of iron and the production of melanin to protect the skin from sunburn. Nuts, seeds and seafood are good sources.
Zinc: Is required to produce RNA and DNA (the genetic material in the body’s cells) and aid the immune system and wound healing. Sources include; oysters, red meat and whole grains.
Iodine: Used to produce thyroxine which regulates human metabolism. Consumption of iodised salt, prawns tuna will fulfil dietary requirement.
Fluoride: Protects the teeth by making the enamel more able to resist tooth decay. The best source is fluoridated tap water consumed by an expectant mother from day one of pregnancy, this will confer these benefits to the child. Too much will create unsightly yellow bands on the teeth, so it is important to check if the local water supply is fluoridated or not and check with your dentist if supplements are necessary.
I will discuss the remaining four next week.
This week’s recipe is seasonal, using a fruit that is normally discarded now marmalade is no longer fashionable. It is the unripe and bitter Seville Orange which is sweet when green.
Spanish Green-Orange Chicken
4 chicken breast halves without skin, cubed
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
4 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 cup dry white wine
2 bitter orange tree leaves, torn
1 large can tomatoes
1 chicken stock cube, crumbled
6 mushrooms, sliced
Zest and juice of 2 whole green, Seville Oranges
Salt and black pepper, to taste
1. Place chicken and olive oil in a pan.
2. Fry the chicken on a medium heat until sealed on all sides.
3. Add the onion and fry for two minutes, stirring constantly.
4. Add the garlic and stir for another minute.
5. Add the wine and orange tree leaves, simmer until the odour of alcohol has disappeared..
6. Add the tomatoes, their juice, the chicken stock cube and stir until the stock has dissolved.
7. Continue to simmer until the sauce has reduced by about a third.
8. Add the mushrooms and simmer for ten minutes more.
9. Add the zest and juice from the bitter oranges, stir, take off the heat.
Tip: Freeze the zest, juice and/or dry the leaves to cook this dish out of season..