Category Archive: Homecooked Food

Meatless Fried Rice

These days, I try to reduce the consumption of meat, especially red meat and instead, increase our intake of vegetables. I dish up a veggie dish everyday. On busy days when I do not have the time to cook our vegetables, I serve everyone raw veggies – cucumbers,  tomatoes, capsicums, carrots, celery and salad leaves.  I buy organic vegetables most of the time.  Steamed sweet corns, Edamame beans and sweet potatoes are our favorites too.

 

Today I whipped these up for dinner:

Meatless fried rice with sides of kimchi and organic orange cherry tomatoes.  I used low GI Basmati rice.

Chicken bones and anchovies soup with lots of carrots, organic tomatoes, organic siew pak choy  and  fish balls.  Fish balls are an occasional sinful treat.

 

My meatless fried rice composed of sweet corn kernels, scallions, 4 eggs, julienned carrots, garlic, pepper, organic soy sauce and overnight Basmati rice (cooked with pandan leaves, lemon grass and ginger).

My meatless fried rice would have tasted even yummier had I added one whole big onion but I was tied down with work today and didn’t have ample time to prep the onions.  Last week, I cooked another style of meatless fried rice which composed of  Bombay onions, chopped garlic, scallions and the kids loved it.  I discovered that the secret to aromatic and yummy fried rice is to add lots and lots of onions.  Onions are naturally sweet and full of flavors.

For those of you trying to cut down on the consumption of meat for better health, do give this meatless fried low GI rice a try. It’s seriously yummy  and easy to prepare.

 

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Savory Oatmeal Porridge & Health Benefits Of Oats

Today being a Saturday and a day where my kitchen is closed, I felt lazy to whip up a ‘proper’ lunch. Our 2 older girls have followed their grand-aunt to the shopping mall. Since it’s just Cass and me, I decided to cook a fuss-free savory meat-free oatmeal porridge.  This used to be my mum’s healthy instant meal for me too when I was growing up and I loved this comfort food.

 

My meat-free savoury oatmeal porridge ingredients:
5 tablespoons of oats. I used organic instant oats. If you like it thicker, add more oats. I like mine thin.
1 egg
A pinch of salt
A few shakes of ground pepper
A few shakes of organic soy sauce
A few shakes of Japanese flavored seaweed mix
A few shakes of sesame seed oil

Directions:
Boil water in saucepan
Add in oats and stir. Be sure you are at the stove to watch the flame as the oats mixture will bubble up and spew up foam from the pot if the flame is too big.
Add in egg and stir well
Add seasoning.

 

I like mine with a piece of spicy fu yue or fermented tofu to give it an extra kick!

This fuss-free and no-frills  savory oatmeal porridge requires only 10 mins of prep time. If you like it to be more ‘fanciful’, you can throw in some minced meat, salted duck’s eggs, chopped carrots, scallions, fish slices or anything of your choice. It would be even tastier if you fry some garlic or onions to flavor this bowl of oats porridge.

10 Reasons Why I Love Oatmeal:

1. Low calorie food; stops cravings.
A cup is only 130 calories! It also stays in your stomach longer, making you feel full longer. You will have less hunger and cravings.

2. Provides high levels of fiber, low levels of fat, and high levels of protein.
It’s on the short list for the highest protein levels of any grain.

3. Stabilizes blood sugar and reduces risk of diabetes (type 2)

4. Removes your bad cholesterol (without affecting your good cholesterol).
Many studies have shown that the unique fiber in oatmeal called beta-glucan, has beneficial effects on cholesterol levels

oatmeal mask

5. Gluten-free safe.

6. Contains lignans which protect against heart disease and cancer.
Oatmeal, like many whole grains, contains plant lignans, which are converted by intestinal flora into mammalian lignans. One lignan, called enterolactone, is thought to protect against breast and other hormone-dependent cancers as well as heart disease.

7. Contains unique antioxidants beneficial for heart disease.
A study at Tufts University shows that the unique antioxidants in oatmeal called called avenanthramides, help prevent free radicals from damaging LDL cholesterol, thus reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.

8. Protects against heart failure.
A Harvard study on 21,000 participants over 19 years found that men who enjoyed a daily morning bowl of whole grain (but not refined) cereal had a 29 percent lower risk of heart failure.

9. Enhances immune response to disease. The unique fiber in oatmeal called beta-gluten also has been shown to help neutrophils travel to the site of an infection more quickly and it also enhances their ability to eliminate the bacteria they find there

10. It tastes good!
All oats whether in flakes or groats form have gone through a heat process which gives them their rich nutty flavor. This keeps them from spoiling. They have also been hulled. This process does not strip away all the bran and germ allowing them to retain a concentrated source of fiber and nutrients .

 

 

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East Meets West Refreshing Salad

My low-carb + high fiber lunch today after 20 laps in the pool this morning 🙂

East Meets West salad, composing of  Royale butterhead,  pink and white pomelo,  satay sauce as dressing and 3 forkfuls of my favorite Mee Siam (Thai-style stir-fried vermicelli).

Satay sauce (sauce made from peanuts, spices and chillies) is from the hubby’s kitchen, prepared by his Indonesian cook.

So satisfying, refreshing and wholesome, love it! 🙂

 

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Down With Flu – Super Lutein To The Rescue

I have been down with the sniffles for the past two days, no thanks to the girl who brought back the woeful virus from school and spread it to everyone!

Yesterday I felt so bushed and lackluster that I popped 6 caps of Super Lutein (double my usual dosage) and voila, today I am feeling so much better!  Nose not runny anymore and I could even brisk-walk 5 laps and climbed up the stairs to the 5th floor of my unit this morning!

So what’s the best food for someone who is down with a flu?  Porridge is always the to-eat food for sickly people and you can never go wrong with a bowl of hot smooth rice porridge with a little minced pork.

Since I still have some homemade dumplings in the freezer, I boiled some for Cass.

And so here’s my Hong Kong style lunch (don’t you think it looks like a meal from Din Tai Fung? 😉 ) on a school-going day. Simple, delish and absolutely hearty! 🙂

 

For more reading on Izumio and Super Lutein, please click on the following link:

Izumio Hydrogen Water and Super Lutein

Izumio and Incontinence

Super Lutein

Day 18 On Izumio Hydrogen Water For Incontinence

Symptoms of a Body Detox

IZUMIO – Antioxidant Hydrogen Water

Hydrogen Water Facts

Super Lutein Goodness

 

 

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Healthy And Delish Grilled Chicken Drumsticks with Kafir Lime Leaves and Turmeric

I mentioned in my kids’ blogs that lately, I am hooked on using kafir lime leaves in my cooking.  I have used them in grilling fish and I have also used these unassuming fragrant leaves in grilling chicken.

To product flavorful meat right to the bone, cut diagonal lines into the flesh and stuff kafir lime leaves and all your spices into the flesh. Leave the meat, covered in fridge for several hours. Then grill at 180C for 10 minutes and 160C for another 10 minutes.

 

 

Together with turmeric (another powerful antioxidant and anti-cancerous spice), ground coriander seeds, garlic powder, sea salt and kafir lime leaves, I whipped out a batch of lip-smacking chicken drumsticks that tasted very much like deep fried chicken drumsticks sold in Indian restaurants!

 

A batch of 10 drumsticks is good for 3 meals – dinner for 4 of us, lunch for Cass and me the next day and school recess break for Sherilyn the next day.

This is Cass’ lunch, consisting of smoothie of the day (orange + apple + mango), pumpkin toast with butter, hard-boiled free-range chicken egg, cool kyuri and cherry tomatoes.

Just another hearty and wholesome meal from the heart for my sweetheart 🙂

 

 

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Flavoring Food With Turmeric and Health Benefits

Turmeric is an amazing root spice that not only adds so much flavor and color to your dishes.  Turmeric is also one of the world’s healthiest food, used thousands of years ago.

Turmeric is a spice that I almost never fail to use each time I marinate meat for grilling in the oven.  For fish – I like it that the intense flavor of turmeric masks the fishy odor.   And for chicken, it just adds so much yummyness to the dish.

The other day, I whipped up an aromatic turmeric and garlic chicken chop dish.

 

The kids loved it!  Sherilyn quickly saved a portion of the chicken for her to bring to school for recess the next day.  Here’s her lunch box for recess the next day, which I reheated in the microwave oven (yes we finally bought a new microwave oven, solely for reheating purposes!) .  I packed some cherry tomatoes for her and gave her a pack of Izumio hydrogen water.  What a wholesome, sustaining and balanced meal, perfect for kids and adults.

 

 

Health benefits of turmeric:

1. Wards off Alzheimer’s disease

2. Helps to prevent cancer

3. Reduces the risk of heart attacks and strokes

4. Combats inflammatory diseases

5.Fights colds and flu

6. Helps indigestion and weight loss

7. Assists diabetes sufferers

8. Can tame heartburn and an upset stomach

 

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Lunch Today – 5 December 2014

Cass is such an easy-going child.  She is not as persnickety when it comes to food, unlike her 2 older sisters.   She will even be happy if she is given just Honey Stars or bread for lunch or dinner!  But would I do that?  Only if I am super duper busy and unwell to cook.

Today is the first day that Alycia and Sherilyn are away.  With just Cass, cooking for her is such a breeze!

This morning, I bought a piece of chicken keel to boil radish soup. Yes, only 1 piece of chicken keel vs. 4-5 pieces if I were to prepare soup for 2 more kids.

Actually,  I ain’t in the mood to cook anything today due to sleep deprivation (I got up at 4:30am to prepare A & S for their early morning flight) but I forced myself to make a trip to the mini mart to buy chicken for the soup as well as some veggies for tonight.   I had to finish cooking all the perishables in the fridge before we leave for Auckland on Tuesday.

For lunch, I blanched some Japanese colorful noodles (which tastes like ‘min sin’) for Cass.   The colors of the noodles come from vegetables.

Seasoning for the noodles is pretty simple and just a few — sesame seed oil, a dash of organic soy sauce, toasted sesame seeds, fried onions, seasoned Korean seaweed and some radish soup.  The turmeric chicken was left-over from dinner last night.

 

 

And my baby girl noshed away this bowl of noodles in a jiffy, as though it was some tasty, MSG-laden noodles from a Japanese restaurant!

Tonight’s dinner will be grilled chicken drumsticks, blanched veggie and radish soup.  No wonder friends of mine with just 1 child are so free!   Cooking for just 1 child is sup sup sui!!  *feeling proud of smug*  HAHA!

 

 

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Pork Bolognese With Fennel and Bay Leaves

I made a big pot of pork bolognese sauce the other day.  I used part of the sauce to whip up a penne pasta dish for the girls’ dinner and kept a portion in the freezer.   I used the thawed portion for making cheat pizza (from wraps) last Sunday.  How handy was the frozen pork bolognese on a day where we could not do any cooking!   We were having some renovation works done to our wet kitchen, thus have not been able to cook for the past 5 days.  My girls commented that my cheat pizza with pork bolognese tasted way better than the ones sold at restaurants!  Getting compliments like this spurs me to keep cooking and gradually, I have developed the  love to cook, albeit only simple menus.  I have never really liked cooking out of  sheer laziness and lack of time but it is out of love for my girls that I cook no matter how busy I may be 🙂

My pork bolognese sauce tasted incredibly flavorful this time as I had thrown in a handful of dried basil leaves and a packet of fresh fennel herbs to cook with the sauce.

 

 

Fresh fennel…

 

 

 

Fresh fennel emits a very aromatic flavor to your food. Its green, feathery fronds look a lot like dill but the fennel herb has a much stronger aniseed flavour. It can be used to spice up your sauces, meat and salads. If only I have a garden, I would fill my garden with pots of fennel, basil, peppermint and an array of herbs 🙂

 

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Organic Brown Rice Noodles With Minced Chicken In Blackstrap Molasses

Our healthy organic brown rice noodles for dinner yesterday…

 

The minced chicken meat and shimeji mushrooms were cooked with a head of garlic (minced in the blender), darkened and seasoned to taste with blackstrap molasses, organic soy sauce and pepper.  The blackstrap tastes pretty much the same as thick dark soy sauce and way healthier too.  The girls loved their oodles of noodles.  There was enough to keep a bowl for Sherilyn’s lunch today 🙂

 

 

 

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Adding Blackstrap Molasses Into Chicken Dish

Homecooked dinner tonight,  4 Sept 2014.

1) Stir-fried cabbage and bok choy (both organic) with garlic (I used an entire head of garlic and pan fried the cloves of garlic uncut. I love munching on fried garlic cloves!)

2) Blanched ladies fingers, drizzled with Japanese sesame dressing.

3) Beef bone soup with carrot, sweet corn, tomato and big onion.

4) Braised chicken with soy sauce, star anise, pepper and blackstrap molasses

 

 

I am glad that I found another way to use the blackstrap molasses that I bought.  I added 2 tablespoons of blackstrap into the braised chicken  dish to give it a nice dark color.  This is to replace the use of thick dark sauce, which is not the healthiest of choice. In fact, I have always shunned the thick dark sauce (though I love having it in my dishes) as I have read before that it contains chemicals that are carcinogenic.   None of the girls could tell the new alien ingredient added into their food and they polished off the entire plate of chicken dish, ha!  Boy am I glad that I have found a healthy substitute for ‘hark yau’ aka thick dark sauce! 🙂

 

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