Mediterranean Baked Cod
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Season cod with salt and pepper and place in a lightly greased baking dish.
Sprinkle with the lemon juice and Kalamata halves.
Place broccoli raab on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Bake cod and broccoli raab at the same time for about 30 minutes or until cod flakes easily with a fork and broccoli raab is roasted.
While cod and broccoli raab are baking, prepare lentils and salsa Rossa.
Place lentils and chicken broth in a saucepan and simmer about 20-30 minutes until lentils are tender.
For the salsa Rossa, boil the water and add the sun-dried tomatoes. Let sit 15 minutes until tomatoes are softened.
Add the sun-dried tomatoes along with their soaking water plus all other salsa Rossa ingredients into a blender and puree until smooth.
Warm salsa Rossa in a saucepan before serving.
Serve the cod, lentils, and broccoli raab with salsa Rossa on the bottom for flavorful dipping.
Athletes who are looking to build muscle or to maintain a strong, lean appearance benefit from eating meals that contain a higher ratio of protein than carbs and fats. Consuming clean, lean proteins help you feel satiated longer after a meal, leading to less overall hunger and potentially less caloric intake. Eating a diet rich with lean protein is also associated with less belly fat to help you maintain that lean physique.
Proteins are present in the structure of all body tissues. Getting plenty of lean protein in your diet aids in weight loss boosts energy and results in faster, stronger muscle building. Maintaining protein levels through clean eating will also accelerate the repair of all body tissues should injury occur.
It can be confusing to figure out which cuts of meat are appropriately considered a lean protein. Ideal lean proteins come from the loin cuts (sirloin, tenderloin, round, chops, or ground meat from those cuts) in red meat animals and the breast portions in poultry. The wild game tends to be considerably leaner than domesticated animals. All fish is considered a lean protein, with the leanest being wild-caught rather than farmed.
Animal protein sources have a high nutrient value. Eggs are considered one of the most nutritionally complete proteins if you also eat the yolk. The egg yolk, however, does account for all of the fat within an egg so if this concerns you, skip the yolk and eat just the whites.
Healthy fats are an important player in your diet to absorb the abundant nutrients found in lean proteins. These fats also support brain and body functions, so don’t go overboard with trying to remove all fat from your diet. Instead, focus on lean proteins paired or cooked with healthy fats like olive oil, coconut oil, and the fats found in nuts and avocados to allow for full assimilation of nutrients.
It’s easier than you might think to put together a clean and lean protein meal that fits these parameters. Think of your meal in layers of protein. Pick your main protein, in this case, lean meat. Flavor the main protein with another protein source, like yogurt or a nut crumble, and complete the meal by serving a high protein side dish such as quinoa and beans, or top it with a protein containing sauce like one made from yogurt or thinned hummus. Green cruciferous vegetables are a good pairing to increase protein content without adding fat into a meal as well.
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