Cleverly combined food­stuffs: 6 healthy pairings

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Many nutrients, such as vi­ta­mins, secondary plant com­pounds and minerals, only deliver the maximum benefit to our body when taken in com­bi­na­tion with others. We have some tasty, easy-to-prepare recipes for you to try at home.

Tomatoes & olive oil

Tomatoes owe their vibrant red colour to lycopene, a potent antioxidant which is fat-soluble. In other words, it is most effective when eaten with some type of healthy fat such as olive oil. Lycopene is believed to have a beneficial effect on the cardiovascular system.

Recipe for yellow & red tomato smoothie with olive oil

Yellow tomato smoothie

  • 500g cherry tomatoes, yellow
  • 20g sugar
  • 10g mango vinegar
  • 150g natural yoghurt
  • Juice of 1/4 lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Mix all the ingredients except the yoghurt together and pass through a sieve. Add yoghurt and season with salt and pepper. Chill.

Red tomato smoothie

  • 500g cherry tomatoes, red
  • 20g sugar
  • Tabasco, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper to taste
  • Juice of 1/4 lemon

Mix all the ingredients together and pass through a sieve. Season with salt, pepper, Tabasco and Worcestershire sauce. Chill.

Olive oil infusion

Put oil, rosemary and thyme into a bowl and leave to infuse for 24h.

Method: Use a measuring jug to pour both smoothies into a glass at the same time so that they don't mix, then drizzle with the olive oil infusion.

Kale & Brazil nuts

How about a kale and nut pesto or a kale salad with chopped Brazil nuts? Eating just one Brazil nut a day is enough to cover an adult's daily intake of selenium. Selenium is an essential trace element that cannot be produced by the body itself. Kale provides the secondary plant compound sulforaphane. A study has shown that the combination of selenium and sulforaphane has a particularly beneficial effect on the immune system. According to the study, these two antioxidants may inhibit cancer.

Recipe for baked kale crisps with Brazil nut dip

Kale crisps (serves 4)

  • 300g kale
  • 2 tbsp. Brazil nut oil
  • Salt to taste
  1. Separate the kale leaves from the thick stalk and tear them into bite-size pieces. Wash and dry thoroughly.
  2. Mix the Brazil nut oil and salt in a bowl, add the kale leaves and toss together by hand until well coated.
  3. Spread out on a baking tray lined with baking paper, making sure the leaves aren’t touching each other, and bake in the oven for around 20 minutes at 100 degrees using dry heat until crisp. 

Brazil nut dip

  • 30g Brazil nuts, ground
  • 2 tbsp. Brazil nut oil
  • 150ml cream, whipped
  • Salt, pepper

Blend all the ingredients together and place in bowls ready for dipping.

Caraway & cheese

Caraway helps alleviate flatulence and is therefore particularly effective when taken in combination with fatty foods or foods that cause gas. So it's no coincidence that caraway is popular as a raclette seasoning.

Recipe for bruschetta with Brie and caraway cream spread & cumin crunch

Brie and caraway cream spread

  • 250g Brie
  • 1/4 tsp. cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. caraway, whole
  • 50ml vegetable stock
  • 1 sprig parsley, chopped
  • 50g cream, whipped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Blend Brie, caraway and vegetable stock. Add whipped cream and chopped parsley, and season with salt and pepper.

Cumin crunch

  • 5 tbsp. Sbrinz, grated
  • 1 tsp. caraway, whole
  • 1 tsp. cumin

Mix all the ingredients together, spread on a baking tray and bake at 180 degrees for around 10 minutes. Leave to cool, then break into pieces.

Bruschetta (serves 4)

  • 4 slices wholegrain baguette
  • 4 tbsp. olive oil

Heat olive oil in a pan and fry the baguette slices on both sides until crisp. Allow to cool briefly. Spread the Brie cream onto the baguette slices and sprinkle with cumin crunch.

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What do you fancy? Baked kale crisps with a Brazil nut dip, millefeuille of carrot and avocado tartare, spinach & lemon lollipop, bruschetta with Brie and caraway cream spread & cumin crunch, or a yellow and red tomato smoothie with an olive oil infusion? (l-r)

Carrot & avocado

Carrots are packed with vitamin A, which is so important for eye health. Oil or foods high in fat – like avocado – help increase the absorption of vitamin A.

Recipe for millefeuille of carrot and avocado tartare

Ingredients for avocado tartare
  • 3 avocados
  • 15g lemon oil
  • 1/2 lime (juice and zest)
  • 1 tbsp. black sesame
  • Salt, pepper and Tabasco to taste

Dice the avocado, add the rest of the ingredients and season.

Ingredients for carrot tartare
  • 400g carrots (in 2 different colours if available)
  • 40g apple vinegar
  • 150ml water
  • 30g sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 sprig parsley, chopped
  • 1 lemon (zest)

Wash, peel and finely dice the car­rots (5mm x 5mm). Put apple vinegar, water, sugar, salt and lemon zest into a pan. Add the diced carrots and cook until tender. Allow to cool, then add chopped parsley and season with salt and pepper.

Spinach & lemon

Spinach and lemon are not just a delicious combination of flavours. The iron in the spinach is important for the production of blood and plays a key role in boosting the immune system. The vitamin C in the lemon makes it easier for the body to absorb the plant-based iron. Other pairings include strawberries and rolled oats for breakfast and lentils and peppers for supper.

Recipe for spinach & lemon lollipops

Ingredients (for approx. 10 lollipops)

  • 150g spinach
  • 40ml vegetable stock
  • 5g sugar
  • 3 sheets of gelatine
  • 1 lemon (juice & grated zest)
  • 1 tbsp. lemon oil
  • 150g cream cheese
  • 130g sliced almonds, roasted and roughly chopped

Method

  1. Finely chop the spinach and set aside.
  2. Soak the gelatine in ice-cold water.
  3. Heat the vegetable stock and sugar in a pan, remove from the heat and dissolve the gelatine in it. Put the vegetable stock and gelatine mixture into a bowl.
  4. Add the lemon juice, grated zest and lemon oil. Mix well.
  5. Add the cream cheese and sliced almonds to the gelatine mixture and mix well by hand (wearing a glove).
  6. Add 1/3 of the chopped spinach and continue mixing. Season with salt and pepper, and place in the fridge for 2h until set.
  7. Remove from the fridge, form small balls and roll them in the remaining spinach.
  8. Place onto small sticks and serve cold.

Salmon & chickpeas

The folic acid contained in the chickpeas is an excellent match for the vitamin B12 found in the salmon. You see, folic acid needs to be accompanied by this particular vitamin for the body to absorb it. Together, the two nutrients combat high homocysteine levels in the blood. These are considered a risk factor for cardiovascular diseases, as well as for Alzheimer's and depression. Other tasty com­bi­na­tions include asparagus with trout in spring or beetroot and chicken.

  • Rocket and spinach contain plant-based iron, which can best be absorbed with the help of the vitamin C from the lemon.
  • Salmon and chickpeas are an ideal combination of vitamin B12 and folic acid.
  • Tomatoes and olive oil improve the absorption of lycopene.
Lachs-Kichererbsen-Salat
Salmon and chickpeas are an ideal combination of vitamin B12 and folic acid.

Recipe for salmon & chickpea salad

Serves 2

  • 2 salmon fillets, deboned and skinned (about 150g each)
  • 2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 tin chickpeas (rinsed & drained)
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Greek Kalamata olives, stoned & halved
  • 2 tbsp. capers
  • 200g cherry tomatoes, halved
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 small bag of rocket salad
  • 1/2 pack of dill, chopped
  • 1/2 pack of basil, chopped
  • Salt and pepper

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Season the salmon fillets with salt and pepper, and rub each one with 1 tsp. Dijon mustard. Place the fillets in a casserole dish brushed with oil and cook in the oven for 12–15 min. Drain the chickpeas and mix with olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Place them in an oven­proof dish and roast in the oven.
  2. Meantime, place the red onions, olives, capers and cherry tomatoes in a large bowl. Add salt, pepper, lemon juice and olive oil.
  3. As soon as the fish is cooked through, take it and the chick­peas out of the oven. Break the salmon into pieces using a fork and leave to cool for a few min­utes. Mix the rocket, chickpeas and herbs into the salad and serve the salmon pieces on top.

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