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It's All About Grill (Part 1) - Bison burgers with sweet onion jam, Green chickpea hummus with grilled bread

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Grilled, it's a great ingredient for many dishes.

These delicious dishes will be a hit at your next barbecue, and each recipe boasts nutrients that benefit you and your growing baby.

Barbecues can be one of summer's guilty pleasures. Mindlessly munching through bowls of chips, grazing on heavy potato salad and topping burgers with sodium-laden condiments can leave anyone feeling bloated, lethargic and uncomfortable. Instead, fire up the grill and celebrate the season with our healthier menu for moms-to-be. Starchy sides and bland burgers are replaced with protein and vitamin-rich dishes; plus, the delicious marinades in these recipes boast herbs high in antioxidants, says Breea Johnson, M.S., R.D., L.D.N., an integrative nutritionist in Chicago. Healthful additions include rosemary, olive oil, garlic, lemon, lime or fresh- squeezed orange juice. Try these six tasty recipes for your next outdoor summer feast.

Barbecues can be one of summer's guilty pleasures

Barbecues can be one of summer's guilty pleasures

Bison burgers with sweet onion jam

Prep: 10 min. Cook: 55 min. Serves 8

Bison is lower in calories, saturated fat and cholesterol than ground beef, plus it packs a whopping 35 cell-building grams of protein for you and your baby. You'll find it at health-food stores and many large supermarkets. Look for grass-fed, pasture-raised bison, which is a more environmentally friendly choice. Red miso, which helps keep blood pressure in check, helps bind this lean meat while deepening its flavor.

Sweet Onion Jam:

·         2 teaspoons olive oil

·         1 pound Vidalia or other sweet onions, coarsely chopped

·         2 tablespoons sugar

·         1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

·         ½ teaspoon kosher salt

·         ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

·         2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

Burgers:

·         Cooking spray

·         2 pounds ground bison

·         ¼ cup low-sodium red miso paste

·         ½ teaspoon kosher salt

·         ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

·         8 whole-wheat hamburger buns

·         2 tablespoons low-fat mayonnaise

·         1 tomato, cut into 8 slices

·         8 butter lettuce leaves

Bison burgers with sweet onion jam

1.    To prepare jam, heat a large skillet pan over medium-high heat. Add oil. Add onions, sugar, thyme, salt and pepper. Cover, reduce heat to medium and cook 5 minutes or until onions are tender. Stir in vinegar. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 45 minutes or until onions are very tender, stirring occasionally. Transfer onion mixture to a glass storage container and chill.

2.    Coat grill with cooking spray, then preheat grill.

3.    To prepare burgers, combine bison, miso paste, salt and pepper in a large bowl and mix well. Shape bison mixture into 8 patties, each ½-inch thick. (Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after handling raw meat.) Make a small indentation in the top of each patty with the back of a spoon (this prevents the patties from shrinking as they cook).

4.    Add patties to grill; cook 4 minutes on each side or until done. Remove patties from grill, and let stand 5 minutes; keep warm. Place buns, cut-side-down, on grill; heat 2 minutes. Spread mayonnaise evenly on top halves of buns. Place 1 patty on bottom half of each bun. Top each patty with 2 tablespoons of onion jam, 1 tomato slice, 1 lettuce leaf and top half of bun.

Per serving: 380 calories, 7 g fat (1.5 g saturated fat), 35 g protein, 44 g carbohydrates, 5.5 g fiber, 90 mg calcium, 5.3 mg iron, 55 mcg Folate

Green chickpea hummus with grilled bread

Prep: 10 Min. Cook: 20 Min. Serves 8

Green chickpeas are the fresh version of dried garbanzo beans, and they have an herby, slightly sweet and nutty flavor. They're a great source of protein, fiber and folate, an essential prenatal nutrient that helps prevent neural- tube defects, such as spina bifida. Lemon juice offers vitamin C, which protects your baby's developing cells. (Sniffing lemons helps ease morning sickness, too.)

·         2 cups shelled fresh green chickpeas (about 2 pounds unshelled)

·         3 garlic cloves

·         ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing the bread

·         2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

·         1 teaspoon kosher salt

·         ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

·         16 slices French baguette Chopped parsley for garnish

Green chickpea hummus with grilled bread

1.    Fill a medium saucepan with water to a depth of ½ inch; bring to a boil. Place a steamer basket in pan; fill with chickpeas. Cover, reduce heat and steam 15 to 20 minutes or until chickpeas are tender. Carefully remove steamer basket from pan; reserve water.

2.    Transfer chickpeas to a food processor. Add garlic; pulse to chop. Add 1/4 cup oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper and purée. Add 1/2 cup reserved water from chickpeas and mix; garnish with parsley.

3.    Preheat grill.

4.    Brush both sides of bread slices with oil and grill until toasted.

Per serving: 250 calories, 13.5 g fat (2 g saturated fat), 7 g protein, 25 g carbohydrates, 4 g fiber, 420 mg sodium, 52 mg calcium, 2.7 mg iron, 125 mcg folate

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