Saturday, August 25, 2012

Simple, Tasty and Healthy Cooking at Home!


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Did you manage to guess what healthy dish my family was cooking in the previous HPB post?

It’s seafood soup! :D

Cooking healthily does not mean having to eat bland food. It simply means making better choices of what ingredients and what methods of cooking to use. 

I am happy to share this easy-to-do one pot dish (so no need to do too much washing! Moohehe).

Seafood Soup Recipe (Serves about 4 pax)

Ingredients

1)      About 350g fish bones
2)      6 slices of young ginger each about 3-5mm thick (washed)
3)      8 medium-sized prawns (shells and legs removed but heads left intact)
4)      16 slices of fish (I used batang aka Spanish mackerel) each about 1cm thick
5)      2 tomatoes, sliced into wedges (washed)
6)      2 bunches of spinach (washed and cut)
7)      250g Beancurd sliced into large cubes
8)      Ground white pepper
9)      Low sodium soy sauce
10)   2 Litres of water
11)   Sesame oil
12)   Huatiao Jiu (Chinese cooking wine)

Steps

1)      Heat a dry pot on medium heat for about 1 min.
2)      Add in ginger slices to the pot, ensuring they do not overlap each other.
3)      After 1 min, flip the ginger slices over and toast the other side for another 1 min.
4)      Add in 2 litres of water, prawn shells and the fish bones to the pot and bring to the boil.
5)      Once boiling, lower the heat and simmer for an hour with the lid of the pot slightly ajar.
6)      Remove the prawn shells, ginger slices and fish bones.
7)      Add in tomato wedges and increase to medium heat.
8)      After 10 mins, add in beancurd and fish slices.
9)      2-3 mins later, add in the spinach and prawns and cook for another 3-5 mins.
10)   Season the soup with a dash of low sodium soy sauce, ground white pepper, sesame oil and Huatiao Jiu to taste.   
 
Boiling is a healthy way of cooking as it does not require oil. It also produces a delicious stock from the natural flavours of the ingredients used.  

Fish bones and ginger give a really tasty stock without the need for adding powdered soup stocks and artificial flavour enhancers.

Adding fruits and vegetables to your diet provides vitamins, minerals, fibre and phytonutrients, not to mention colour! Here, spinach is rich in iron, vitamins A, C, E and calcium. Tomatoes contain lycopene, a powerful antioxidant, and potassium etc.

Prawns are a low-fat, low-calories good source of protein (beating good ole chicken!). They also contain omega-3, selenium and zinc among other healthful goodies. 

Enjoy a satisfying bowl of seafood soup at home. Cooking it at home means I know and can control exactly what goes into the dish and ultimately my family’s stomachs. 

We enjoyed this with a bowl of brown rice. On that topic, my family has been eating brown rice at home for the past 8 years or so. A common misconception is that brown rice is hard and un-palatable. We add a bit more water to it when cooking and it turns out very nice. We have grown to love its chewy bite and slight nutty flavour. Besides having a better texture and taste, it also provides moo-re dietary fibre, manganese, potassium and vitamin B!  :)

Hope you will enjoy this recipe and dish at home with your family. Cooking healthily can be easy. Just be mindful and use healthier options along the way. It’ll soon be second nature to you!     

Chew On This: Join in the Let's Cook Healthy Together Contest now and stand to win $3000 worth of NTUC vouchers! 

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