Watch Now: Turkey Meatballs, Fruit Salad & Other Recipes for Cancer Patients

Healthy and tasty recipes filled pans and plates during a recent interactive cooking demonstration at Baptist Hospital of Miami. The audience feasted on different foods and facts while helping Stan Hodes, executive chef at Baptist Hospital, prepare four recipes.

Lucette Talamas, a registered dietitian at Baptist Health South Florida, was also on hand to explain why certain foods deliver an extra dose of health to cancer patients and their families.

The interactive food demonstration — called “In the Kitchen With Our Experts” — is part of an ongoing series of Community Health programs from Baptist Health. The audience included cancer survivors, food fans and children. The recipes from Chef Stan are featured below.

The Baptist Health South Florida News Team was there to sample and watch the cooking demonstration. Watch it now.

Turkey Meatballs


  • 1 – 1.5 pounds of lean (90/10) ground turkey.
  • 3 ounces olive oil.
  • 1 large onion, diced small.
  • 1 green pepper, diced small.
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped.
  • ½ cup finely diced day-old bread.
  • 2 large eggs.
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley.
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper.
  • 1/2cup marinara sauce.
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese.
  • 1 tablespoon fresh, chopped basil.
  • 1 tablespoon fresh, chopped oregano.
  • 2 quarts low-sodium chicken broth.
  • Directions

    1. Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat, and add the olive oil.
    2. Add the onions, garlic and green peppers to the pan; season with salt and pepper; toss and cook down until the onions are translucent.
    3. Remove the vegetables from the pan, and allow to cool for about 10 minutes.
    4. In a large mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients, season well with salt and pepper, and mix thoroughly.

    ** Chef Tip! Cook off a small patty of the meatball mix, and taste it. Adjust the seasoning if needed.

    5. Form meatballs into 2-ounce balls, and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours.
    6. Put a four-quart pot on a medium-high heat, and fill 1/3 with low-sodium broth.
    7. Bring the broth to a simmer (low boil). Remove the meatballs from the refrigerator, and place 12 to 14 at a time into the broth. (Do not boil as the meatballs will break.)
    8. Poach the meatballs for 10 to 12 minutes until the internal temperature of the meatballs are 165º F.
    9. Remove from the broth when done onto a pan lined with paper towels. Drain and cool.
    10. May be served immediately with your favorite tomato sauce, cheese sauce or as an appetizer with a dip.

    **Chef Tip! Freeze in bags of 12 and use as needed. These can be frozen for 2 to 3 months.

    Bruschetta With Plum Tomatoes and Fresh Basil


  • 6-7 ripe, plum tomatoes (about 1.5 pounds).
  • 2 teaspoons garlic, minced (about 2 cloves).
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO).
  • 2 teaspoons Balsamic vinegar.
  • 10 large fresh basil leaves.
  • ½ teaspoon Kosher salt, more or less to taste.
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, more or less to taste.
  • 1 loaf baguette, whole grain bread.
  • Procedure

    1. Wash, core and dice the tomatoes into 1/2 inch-dice.

    2. Place diced tomatoes into a medium mixing bowl.

    3. Add chopped basil, salt and pepper, vinegar, garlic and oil to the tomatoes.

    4. Toss gently to combine and refrigerate. Better if left for 30 minutes.

    5. Slice the baguette into 1/4- inch slices.

    6. Lightly brush with EVOO* and bake at 250 for 60 minutes until very crisp (like toast).

    7. Cool the sliced baguette, and top generously with the tomato and basil mixture.

    8. Additional sliced basil can be added to the top of each Bruschetta as garnish.

    9. Sit back and enjoy this crisp, fresh, healthy appetizer.

    Serving Size: 6-8 appetizer servings | Yields: 24 total pieces

    *Olive Oil spray can be used on the bread instead of brushing on EVOO

    Spinach, Mushroom and Farro Toss


  • 20 ounces of low-sodium vegetable broth.
  • 2 tablespoons of virgin olive oil (first listed).
  • 1.5 pounds of farro, raw.
  • 1 pound of washed baby spinach.
  • 8 ounces of sliced Baby Bella mushrooms.
  • 8 ounces of white onions, ½-inch dice.
  • 1 ounce of garlic, chopped.
  • 1/3 cup olive oil (second listed).
  • Directions
    1. Heat low-sodium vegetable broth to a simmer.
    2. In a sauce pan, heat oil over medium heat.
    3. Add farro. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 12 minutes. Remove from heat and cover. Let stand for 5 minutes.
    4. Sautee onions in 2 tablespoons of olive oil until just starting to caramelize, add the garlic and mushrooms; sauté until half cooked. Stir in fresh spinach, and fold together until the spinach starts to wilt.
    5. Turn off the heat ,and fold in hot farro. Mix well; season with salt and pepper to taste.

    Serving Size: ½ Cup | Yields: 12 total servings

    Fresh Fruit Salad


  • 1 cup cubed cantaloupe.
  • 1 cup cubed honeydew.
  • 1 cup orange wedges.
  • 1 cup cubed pineapple.
  • ½ cup halved strawberries.
  • ½ cup seedless red grapes.
  • ½ cup fresh orange juice.
  • 1 cup finely sliced fresh mint.
  • Procedure
    1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl.
    2. Allow to marinade for one hour under refrigeration.

    Serving size: 4-ounce portions|Yields:10 servings

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