Composition, calorie content and useful properties of sofrito, for whom the sauce is contraindicated. What dishes does it suit and how best to cook it?
Sofrito is a classic sauce for Southern Europe, somewhat reminiscent of the more familiar adjika, however, as a rule, less spicy. It is prepared from vegetables, herbs, oil and various spices. The recipe is very simple, and sofrito is made literally in a matter of minutes - vegetables and herbs are pre-cut, then stewed or "chased" through a chopper, and oil and spices are added to the resulting mixture. The purpose of sofrito is universal, it can be served with one or another ready-made dish, or it can be used as a marinade for a kebab. At the same time, the sauce will not only add originality and emphasize the taste of the dish, but also make it healthier.
What is sofrito sauce?
Different sources define the geographic origin of the sauce differently. Someone writes that Italy gave us the sofrito recipe, someone also assures us that the healthy dressing came to us from Spain.
The sauce is considered truly versatile, but most of all, of course, it is suitable for meat and poultry. Sofrito does not go well with fish and mushrooms, but vegetable hot dishes, again, complements very harmoniously.
The sofrito sauce recipe is based on bell peppers, tomatoes, onions and garlic. Cilantro is most often used as greens, olive oil is usually taken, but spices are selected whatever your heart desires.
There are two main recipes for making sofrito - quick and warm. In the first case, vegetables and greens are simply chopped randomly, and then they are turned into a mushy consistency using an ordinary manual meat grinder or modern technology - a combine, blender, etc. Then oil is poured into this "porridge" and spices are added to taste.
The second method involves preliminary sautéing of vegetables, in this case the vegetables are cut into neat beautiful cubes and fried in oil until soft. Greens and spices are added shortly before readiness.
How to make the sofrito sauce, only you decide, the first method, of course, is good because the dressing is done very quickly, but the method involving preliminary sautéing makes it possible to obtain a richer and softer taste. Choose for yourself what you like best.
It is worth noting that it is not necessary to prepare a healthy dressing yourself, you can buy sofrito sauce, however, you need to carefully study the composition, it is advisable to find the most natural one.
Composition and calorie content of sofrito sauce
In the photo sofrito sauce
Since the dressing is prepared exclusively from vegetables and herbs, its energy value, unlike some mayonnaise, turns out to be very small, despite the fact that oil is used as a base.
Calorie content of sofrito sauce - 80 kcal per 100 g, of which
- Proteins - 1, 4 g;
- Fats - 4, 8 g;
- Carbohydrates - 6, 8 g.
Low calorie content is not the only advantage of the sauce, it contains many vitamins, minerals and other useful substances we need every day.
So, bell peppers are a source of vitamin C, tomatoes contain a powerful antioxidant lycopene, onions are rich in the most valuable flavonoid quercetin, garlic is a storehouse of minerals. All of these listed ingredients are essential ingredients in the sofrito composition.
Add greens to that too, and any greens contain important phytochemicals; spices - any seasonings are the concentrated benefits of vegetables and herbs; olive oil is a source of essential fatty acids, and you will understand that the composition of sofrito sauce is really very valuable for our body.
Benefits of sofrito sauce
In fact, even individually, each ingredient of the sofrito sauce is very useful for our body, and for each one can cite a huge variety of valuable properties, let alone their combination. It is important to understand that the product has a healing effect on the entire body, however, the following properties of sofrito are especially worth noting:
- Strengthening immunity … Since the bell pepper, which is part of the sauce, holds the record for the content of vitamin C (more only in rose hips), this product plays an essential role for our immunity.
- Anti-inflammatory properties … Each sofrito ingredient contains flavonoids - special natural plant substances that play the role of a mild natural "antibiotic", which allows the sauce to have a positive effect on the body in the presence of inflammations of a very different nature. Sofrito can help the body with an acute illness - for example, a common cold, and it can be useful for stopping a chronic illness.
- Normalization of the digestive tract … The sauce for the digestive system is of great importance. It is worth noting that today the diagnosis is very common - insufficient acidity of the stomach. This situation can lead to impaired protein digestion, assimilation of nutrients, bacterial overgrowth syndrome, etc. The components of the sauce - onion and garlic in particular - increase the acidity of the stomach, have a general stimulating effect on its work, which makes it possible to digest food more efficiently. In addition, the sauce is a source of fiber and helps prevent flatulence and constipation.
- Antiparasitic effect … Separately, it should be said about the antiparasitic effect of sofrito, which is mainly due to the presence of onions and garlic in the composition, these vegetables have a pronounced antihelminthic effect and may well be used to prevent parasitosis. By the way, given that the parasites in food are able to enter our body, in particular, due to insufficient acidity, the property of the sauce to increase it also works against attempts by parasites to colonize our intestines.
- Beneficial effect on the cardiovascular system … The sauce contains many polyphenols, these beneficial substances are very important for the normal functioning of the heart, they protect our main muscle from oxidative stress and acute conditions, including heart attack.
- Antioxidant effect … Free radicals, when present in the body in large quantities, can provoke a variety of diseases and cell mutations, including the growth of cancer cells. Antioxidants are components that control the proper level of free radicals. In total, all the ingredients in the sauce contain over 40 antioxidant substances.
- Beneficial effect on the hematopoietic system … It is believed that sofrito is able to improve the functioning of the hematopoietic system. Due to the presence of a large group of useful components, this is a good prevention of anemia. In addition, it has a mild blood thinning effect, preventing blood clots and clogging of the arteries. Finally, sofrito cleanses the blood of bad fats, removes cholesterol, and prevents atherosclerosis.
- Toning effect … The sauce has a beneficial effect on the nervous system, providing a stimulating, invigorating effect. Thus, it would be ideal to complement the sofrito with a lunch dish, so that the afternoon is productive. But it is probably better to refuse sauce for dinner, especially if you have problems with the nervous system, difficulty falling asleep, etc.
- Cleansing the body … Our body is cleansed of toxins in two stages: in the first, the liver neutralizes toxic components using various nutrients, in the second, various organs remove them from the body. The ingredients in the sauce have enough ingredients to have a positive effect on both phases of detoxification.
We are accustomed to the fact that sauce is, as a rule, a harmful and fatty product, but sofrito is clearly not one of those, it not only does not harm the body, but, on the contrary, has a comprehensive positive effect.