A few weeks ago, I wrote a post about heart disease, the #1 killer of women, including how to best prevent heart disease, what a heart healthy diet looks like, and what makes nuts heart healthy. In that post, I shared a recipe for Georgian Spinach Walnut Balls, inspired by a feast on the eve of the Georgian New Year. This month, I’ve been adding walnuts to lots of dishes, including Braised Pomegranate Chicken with Walnuts, Dark Chocolate Walnut Pomegranate Clusters, and the Eggplant Walnut Dip recipe that I am sharing today.
Walnuts happen to be one of the healthiest nuts around. Take a look:
- Walnuts are heart healthy, helping to lower cholesterol and reduce inflammation. Reducing inflammation can help decrease the progress of arteriosclerosis, the development and build-up of plaque in the arteries.
- Walnuts contain more ALA omega-3 fatty acids than any other nut, which help reduce the potential for heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and clinical depression.
- Walnuts contain a high level of an unusual form of vitamin E (gamma-tocopherol) that has far more powerful anti-inflammatory actions than the alpha form.
The night of our Georgian feast, we dined on all sorts of dishes made with walnuts, including an appetizer simply called Eggplant with Walnut, which was pan-fried eggplant, stuffed with a mixture of ground walnuts and spices, and rolled up.
I wanted to try recreating this dish at home, but didn’t want to be bothered frying the eggplant, plus I wanted to make a healthier version if possible. I thought about baking the eggplant, but in the end made this Eggplant and Walnut Dip with the spices and herbs that are used in the traditional Georgian eggplant and walnut dish.
I came across a post on Everyday Maven (which she actually found at Clean Green Simple) that had an interesting method for roasting eggplant on the stove. I was fascinated by the way the eggplant was charred over the gas stove, then put into a pot to finish cooking. Perfect for getting that smokiness of roasted eggplant without turning on the oven. I had bought mini eggplants from the Indian store, so they did not sit too easily on my gas burner. In fact, they fell into the crevices of the burner a few times and I had to rescue them from the flames. My boys thought I might set the house on fire. Next time, I will try using longer eggplant, perhaps Japanese eggplant.
This Eggplant and Walnut Dip can be served with carrot sticks, celery sticks, toast, or sturdy crackers.
And now for the Giveaway! (This Giveaway is now closed)
Nuts.com is offering one pound of your favorite nuts for this giveaway. I have been buying nuts, nut flours, and seeds from Nuts.com ever since my son was found to be allergic to wheat. Their roasted nuts are great eaten as is and I’ve found their nut flours and seeds high in quality.
One winner will receive up to one (1) pound of nuts of their choice from Nuts.com. No purchase necessary, void where prohibited. US Residents only. Must be over 18. Giveaway will end on March 2, 2012 at 11:59PM EST. One winner with a valid entry will be selected at random using random.org. Winner will be notified by email and will have up to 3 days to claim their prize or another winner will be selected.
How To Enter:
Required Entry: For a chance to win, leave a comment below telling us what nuts you would like win. Be sure to include your email address so I can contact you if you win.
You can earn up to six additional entries by doing any of the following. Be sure to leave a separate comment for each additional entry so I know you did it:
- Like me and Nuts.com on Facebook
- Follow me and Nuts.com on Twitter
- Follow me on Pinterest and pin this post
- Stumble this post and follow me @JeanettesHealth on Stumbleupon
- Sign up for my Email or RSS Feeds
- Tweet this giveaway, being sure to include my Twitter handle (@JeanettesHealth)
* If you already follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and/or Stumbleupon, and/or already subscribe to Jeanette’s Healthy Living, let me know as well, since this counts as an entry.
Disclosure: I was provided with samples of Nuts.com products for the purpose of doing a review and giveaway. However the opinions expressed in this post are my own.
For more heart healthy recipes, check out my Heart Healthy Recipes Pinterest board.
Sources/Information on Nuts and Heart Health:
Nuts and your health: Eating nuts for heart health, Mayo Clinic
Eating nuts promotes cardiovascular heart, Harvard Health Publications
Nuts! Heart Healthy Tips, University of Massachusets Medical School
Walnuts May Be Top Nut For Heart Health, WebMd.com
Why You Should Go Nuts For Nuts, Everyday Health
Nuts for Heart Healthy Diet, Smart Heart Living
What Are The Best Heart Healthy Nuts, Healthy Heart Meditation
6 Snack Combos with Heart Healthy Nuts, Health.com
Going Nuts: Georgetown’s Thomas Sherman on Heart-Healthy Nuts, Washingtonian
Walnuts Are Top Nut For Heart-Healthy Antioxidants, Science Daily
If You Are Nuts About Health Try The Top 6 Healthiest Nuts, SixWise.com
Georgian Eggplant Walnut Recipes:
Eggplant and Walnut, Besiki Sisauri’s Web Site
Georgian Eggplant with Walnuts, MyRecipes.com
Georgian Eggplant with Walnut, Cook Eat Share
Walnut Stuffed Eggplant Rolls, Food Perestroika