Friday, 28 September 2012

Beetroot + Grapes Juice

Beetroot has had a great PR job over recent years, being hailed as a ‘super food’ by numerous experts.

Health benefits of beetroot

Find out about the top 5 health benefits of beetroot and how you can make sure you’re getting your daily dose – without resorting to pickled beetroot from a jar!

Beetroot Is Your Liver’s Friend
The beta cyanin in beetroot can help detox your liver, having a knock-on effect for your bloodstream, by helping the body to eliminate toxins and potentially preventing the build-up of fatty deposits.
So if you have found yourself ‘over-indulging’, adding some raw beetroot or beetroot juice to your diet can help you recover.
Then again, why save it just for the ‘morning after’?!

Beetroot Juice Can Prevent Strokes & Heart Attacks
Beetroot juice has been shown to reduce high blood pressure. It affects an estimated 25% of the world’s adult population and is a significant factor in coronary heart disease and strokes.
Researchers at Barts’ Hospital (London) and the London School Of Medicine found that drinking 500ml of beetroot juice a day can significantly reduce high blood pressure, for over 24 hours after drinking.
Whilst most of us wouldn’t fancy a pint of red stuff every morning, the research gives us a very big hint that including at least some beetroot in our diet on a daily basis will be good for us.

Beetroot Is Packed With Nutrients
Beetroot leaves can be eaten raw when young.
Beetroot is a super-storehouse of both vitamin C and iron, which is great news for your body. Both are essential elements for health, but many of us struggle to absorb enough iron. Luckily, good old Mother Nature included extra vitamin C in her beetroots and this vitamin helps increase iron absorbtion!
Vitamin C is water soluble, which means it leaches out of veggies when you cook them in water. So the easiest way to get your combo-fix is to eat raw beetroot.
Incidentally, young beetroot leaves are a better source of iron than spinach!
The roots are a good source of many other vitamins and minerals, including folic acid, phosphorous, magnesium and B6.

Beetroot Can Cheer You Up
Beetroot has been shown to contain the compound betaine, which enhances the production of the body’s natural mood-lifter seratonin. So it would seem that munching fresh beetroot can literally make you smile.
Betaine is also really useful for cardiovascular health.

Immune System Booster
Beetroot’s amazing range of vitamins and nutrients have been shown to boost your immune system, helping you better fight off infection. These nutrients help stimulate the reoxygenation of cells and the production of new blood cells. Pretty important stuff!
Source : Raw Food Journey

So, here's a healthy drink to share with you all. There is no exact measurement as it depends on individual's preference. :)

Ingredients :

- Beetroot (washed and cut into cube)

- Grapes (washed)

- Honey
- Water

Method :
1)  Put beetroot, grapes and water into the blender.  I didn't use the juice extractor because I prefer my juice with fiber; so blender is the best choice.

2) Blend until smooth.  Add honey.

3)  Serve chilled.

Stir Fried Swiss Brown Mushrooms with Chinese Leeks and Eggs

Mushrooms have a surprisingly high nutritional value. They are low in calories, cholesterol-free, fat-free, high in protein and fiber and low in sodium. Besides, they are also high in nutrients such as selenium, potassium, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin D and more.

With more than 14,000 kinds of mushrooms in existence, only 3,000 of those are edible and about 1,400 are actually recognized as poisonous.

Mushrooms are not only nutritious, they are delicious too! That's the reason we love mushrooms; any type of mushrooms and I can cook it anyway I like! Here's a dish of Swiss Brown Mushrooms with Chinese Leeks and Eggs.

Ingredients :

- 100g of mushrooms (1 box is 200g and I used only half) - washed and cut
- 3 stalks of Chinese Leeks - washed and cut
- 4 eggs (beat)
- ginger (sliced finely)
Cooking oil

Seasonings : (to taste)
- Salt
- Soy Sauce

Method :

1) Heat oil in a wok. Saute ginger until aromatic.

2) Add leeks and mushrooms. Stir well. Add salt.

3) Add beaten egg and let it set. Then mix well. Add some water if it is too dry.

4) Lastly, add soy sauce and stir.

 More mushrooms in your diet are not only tasty; they're good for you too!

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Healthy Salad

This healthy fall salad recipe calls for a classic combination of sweet and sour - the sweet supplied by ripe pears, and the sour by pickles and vinaigrette. Jicama strips add a refreshing and delightful crunch to the mix.

2 ripe pears, peeled and chopped into bite-size pieces

1 medium jicama, peeled and sliced into thin strips

3 green onions, finely chopped

1 yellow or orange bell pepper, chopped into bite-size pieces

4 cups mixed baby salad greens
1/4 cup pickles, sliced

For Vinaigrette:
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar or lemon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Sea salt and pepper, to taste

Whisk 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar or lemon juice, Dijon mustard, turmeric and sea salt and pepper together to form a basic vinaigrette for this salad.

Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl, drizzle with vinaigrette, then give it a good toss with your hands.

Serve immediately. The quantities listed in this recipe make approximately four portions.

Thanks to Dr Ben Kim for this yummy and healthy salad recipe!

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Homemade Roselle Jam

Roselle is known as Hibiscus Sabdariffa and is a species of Hibiscus.  It is known as the rosella or rosella fruit in Australia. It is asam belanda in Malaysia. In Chinese it is 洛神花 (Luo Shen Hua) . 

Roselle is becoming increasingly popular as a health drink as it has 
high content of Vitamin C and is said to contain 3 times more Vitamin C than blackcurrant and 9 times more than citrus fruit. It is also rich in anti-oxidant properties (anthocyanins).

Fresh roselle has been found to contain vitamin D, vitamin B1, vitamin B2, and vitamin B2 Complex, Vitamin A, Niacin and Calcium. 

Known benefits of drinking roselle juice:

- decreases inflammation of kidney and urinary tract. 

- good for arteriosclerosis and reduce blood  

- normalize blood pressure.

- stimulate internal peristalsis.

- relief cough and fever.

- for soft and smooth skin.

We usually make roselle juice by boiling the calyces in water for 8 to 10 minutes (or until the water turns red), then add sugar. It is often served chilled.  However this time, I decided to make roselle jam as my sister had given me a bag of homegrown roselle; 100% organic! 

Ingredients :

- 3 big bowls of fresh roselle (separate the red fleshy calyx from the central seedpod, washed)
- 3 1/2 cups of granulated sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick 
- few pandan (screwpine) leaves
- 1 cup of water 

Method :
1)  Put fresh roselle and water into a blender and blend it.

2)  Then, transfer to a medium sized pot.

3)  Add sugar and cinnamon stick.

4)  Cook at medium low heat.  Stir occasionally.

5)  Add pandan leaves when half way through.

6)  Keep stirring until it starts to thicken.  Remove pandan leaves.

7)  Let it cool before transfer to an airtight container.  Refrigerate.  

Enjoy your healthy Homemade Roselle Jam with bread or cream crackers.  I also mix 1 or 2 spoons into my fresh lemon drinks!  Very refreshing.... :)

Stir Fried French Beans with Fried Tofu and Preserved Radish

French Beans (String Beans) is highly nutritious. It has the same nutritional benefits as other common beans such as lima beans, mung beans, kidney beans, pinto beans and navy beans. 

It is easy to prepare and delicious no matter how you cook it.  Stir fry is one of it and it is especially tasty if stir fry it with preserved radish.  Instead of just the preserved radish, I also add deep fried  hard tofu.  Do try this simple and nutritious recipe :)

Ingredients :


- 1 big bunch of french beans (washed and cut)
- 2 blocks of hard tofu (cut into medium size)
- 1 tbsp of preserved radish (washed and roughly chopped)
- garlic (crushed)
cooking oil
Seasonings : (to taste)
- salt
- soy sauce

Method :

1) Heat enough oil in a wok and fry tofu until golden brown. Set aside.

2) With the remaining oil in the wok, saute garlic and radish until aromatic.

3) Add french beans and stir well. If too dry, add some water.

4) Then, add fried tofu. Stir and mix well.

5) Lastly, add seasonings and give it a quick a stir.

6) Serve hot.

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Sausage Factory‏?????

A SARDAR sent his son abroad to give him a good education. On his return back home after completing his studies the father
took the son to his factory where they made sausages.

He let his son have a good look at the whole factory. The son examined the whole procedure seriously and gave a kind of brainy look.

Dad was so happy and asked the son,"So Son, do you have any good plans to further develop our business?."

SON: "Haanji, instead of putting the pigs into the machine and getting sausages out, we can put sausages in and get pigs from the other side"

Dad got so annoyed and he said,
"Wah PUTHAR! You are so clever. Only your mom has that kind of machine, where I put my sausage in and a pig like you came out!"

Monday, 24 September 2012

Man and Woman

Behind every successful woman, there is a satisfied man.
But behind a satisfied woman, there is an exhausted man

Sex is like a restaurant.
Sometimes you get full satisfactory service, and sometimes you have to be satisfied with self-service.

What makes a happy man?
Daughter on the cover of Cosmo.
Son on the cover of Sports Illustrated.
Mistress on the cover of Playboy
Wife on the cover of "Missing Persons"

Q: Why was the 2-piece swimsuit invented?
A: To separate the HAIRY section from the DAIRY section.

Teacher: "What do you want to become?"
Little Johnny: "Doctor!!"
Teacher: "Why?"
Little Johnny: "Coz its the only profession where you can tell a woman to take off her clothes and get her husband to pay you."

Old lady, 85, a virgin, about to die, wanted her tombstone to read:
The engraver shortened it to:

75-year-old man got married to a 16-year-old girl.
On their first night both were crying….
Coz she didn't know anything, and he had forgotten everything.

Behind every successful man is a woman.
That's why Bill Gate always keeps his wallet in front.

Friday, 21 September 2012

$7.00 SEX

Economic lesson for today... $7.00 Sex

An Arizona couple, both well into their 80's, go to a sex therapist's office. 

The doctor asks, 'What can I do for you?'
The man says, 'Will you watch us have sexual intercourse?' 

The doctor raises both eyebrows, but he is so amazed that such an elderly couple is asking for sexual advice that he agrees.

When the couple finishes, the doctor says, 'There's absolutely nothing wrong with the way you have intercourse..'

He thanks them for coming, he wishes them good luck, he charges them $50 and he says good bye.

The next week, the same couple returns and asks the sex therapist to watch again. The sex therapist is a bit puzzled, but agrees.

This happens several weeks in a row.

The couple makes an appointment, has intercourse with no problems, pays the doctor, then leave.

Finally, after 3 months of this routine, the doctor says, 'I'm sorry, but I have to ask. Just what are you trying to find out?'

The man says, 'We're not trying to find out anything. She's married; so we can't go to her house. I'm married; and we can't go to my house.

The Holiday Inn charges $98.
The Hilton charges $139.

We do it here for $50, and
Medicare pays $43 of it, leaving my net cost of $7.


Rice Cooker Fried Kueh Teow

Last Sunday, we decided to have fried kueh teow for lunch.  However, I was quite lazy to do it the conventional way. I want something simple, easy and quick. So, I used Toshiba rice cooker to cook kueh teow!
The ingredients were quite simple as I just made do with whatever ingredients that were available on that day. However, you can add your preferred ingredients such as prawns, chinese chives, eggs and cockles.

Ingredients :

- 2 packets of IKT kueh teow
- 2 fish cakes (sliced)
- 1 whole garlic (minced)
- 1 bombay onion (chopped)
- bean sprouts (taugeh) - fried separately
cooking oil
Seasonings :
- 2 tbsp of Homemade Chili Paste
- 1 tbsp of dark caramel sauce
- soy sauce (to taste)
- salt (to taste)
- pepper (to taste)

Method :
1) Heat oil in a wok. Saute garlic and onion until aromatic.

2) Add fish cakes and stir well.

3) Transfer the fried ingredients to the rice cooker.

4) Add seasonings to the rice cooker. Then add kueh teow.
5)  Stir and mix well.  Select 'Quick Cook'.  

6)  It takes about 30 minutes to cook.  Stir again after you hear the 'beep' sound.  Let it sit for a about 5 minutes.

7)  Meanwhile, fry taugeh to go with the fried kueh teow.

8)  Serve the fried taugeh with kueh teow.  

That day, we had it with simple watercress soup too.

Well, if you want a simple no-fuss cooking, fully utilise your rice cooker.  As I am busy most of the time, I use my rice cooker to cook soup, braise, stew and steam certain foods.  My multi-purpose rice cooker for a lazy person like me, hahaha...

Updated on 31 Oct 2012 :
This post for Rice Cooker Fried Kueh Teow was featured in Toshiba Home Appliances Page.  Have a look at the page. :)

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Stir Fried Manicai (Star Gooseberry) with Salted Egg

I came across Kelly Siew's Manicai recipe at Sarawak Food Fest - Sept 2012.  

In Hokkien, we call it Manicai. Whereas, in English it is called star gooseberry or sweet leaf and in Malaysia it is cangkuk manis, sayur manis, pucuk manis or cekur manis. I like Manicai but all these while I didn't know that any excess amount of Manicai juice is bad for our lungs due to a chemical called alkaloid papaverine. Guess what? I have been cooking Manicai without squeezing out all the juice!

So, this is my first 'squeezed' Manicai and I cooked it with dried shrimps and salted egg. Thanks Kelly!

Do give it a try if you like this dish :)

Ingredients :

- 1 bunch of manicai
(washed and roughly tear the leaves with hand. Then, add salt and leave aside for few minutes. Squeeze all the juice out with hand. Lastly, rinse and squeeze again).

- 3 eggs - whipped
- 1 salted egg
- 1 tablespoon of dried shrimps
- garlic
- Soy sauce
- cooking oil

Method :
1) Heat enough oil in a wok and saute garlic and dried shrimps until aromatic.

2) Stir in manicai and cook for about a minute. Add some water if it looks too dry.

3) Make a well in the middle and add beaten eggs in and wait for it to set. Stir and mix well.

4) Add salted egg on top and let it set. Then add water if it is too dry. I prefer it to be a bit moist. Lastly, stir in the soy sauce to taste.

5) Stir and mix well and serve hot.

This dish is full of fibre and it is indeed delicious.... :)