Lunch Idea – Sushi Lunch

Chirashi Sushi Lunch Incorporated with Whole Grains


  • Chirashi Sushi with Jack Mackerel – sushi rice made with amaranth grain and white rice
  • Chicken and Quinoa Balls Soup

My Recipe

Chawanmushi with Shrimp and Chicken


3 – Large egg
3½ oz – Skinless boneless chicken thigh
8 pieces – Large frozen shell-on shrimp
8 pieces – Dried or fresh shitake mushroom
24 pieces – Fresh gingko nuts

Chicken Marinade:

1/4 tsp – Salt
1½ tsp – Sake


18 oz – Water
1½ tsp – Bonito fish soup stock powder
scant 1/2 tsp – Salt
3/4 tsp – Japanese soy sauce
3/4 tsp – Mirin seasoning


  1. Thaw frozen shrimp in refrigerator overnight or in a colander under running cold tap water. Shell shrimp and devein, if any. Dry shrimp with paper towel.
  2. Give dried shitake mushroom a quick rinse. Soak in a covered bowl for about 1½ hours or until softened. Cut off stem if any. Rinse mushroom between the gills to remove dirt and grit. Squeeze out water. (If using fresh, rinse and squeeze out water.) Make a star pattern on the cap.
  3. Cut chicken into thick slices. Add marinade and set aside for about 30 minutes.
  4. Rinse gingko nuts.
  5. Dissolve bonito fish soup stock powder in 3 oz of hot water. Add another 15 oz of cold water to make up 18 oz. Add beaten egg and the rest of the seasoning. Stir to combine.
  6. Pre-cook chicken in simmering hot water for about 1½ minutes. Remove and drain.
  7. Put a piece each of chicken, shrimp, mushroom and 3 pieces gingko nuts in the bottom of each ramekin and fill up to the rim with seasoned egg. Repeat with remaining 7 ramekins. Cover each ramekin with foil.
  8. Steam custard over medium low heat for about 28 minutes. Remove and serve hot.

Yield 8 servings

Early Detection is Key in the Fight Against Ovarian Cancer

Ovarian cancer is a rare but often deadly disease that can strike at any time in a woman’s life. It affects one in 70 women and in the past was referred to as a silent killer, but researchers have found that there are symptoms associated with ovarian cancer that can assist in early detection. Experts at Northwestern Memorial say the best defense is to make use of preventive methods, understand the risks and recognize potential warning signs of ovarian cancer.

“Currently, there is no reliable screening test to identify early ovarian cancer. Women need to focus on good health habits, listen to their bodies and tell their doctor if a change occurs,” said Diljeet Singh, MD, gynecological oncologist and co-director of the Ovarian Cancer Early Detection and Prevention Program at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

Catching ovarian cancer early increases five-year survival odds from 30 percent to more than 90 percent. But the symptoms of ovarian cancer often mimic other less dangerous conditions making it difficult to recognize. Singh says women should be aware of possible early warning signs which include:

  • Bloating
  • Pelvic or abdominal pain
  • Difficulty eating or feeling full quickly
  • Urinary symptoms (urgency or frequency)
  • Increased abdominal size (pants getting tighter around waist)

Singh comments that the frequency and number of symptoms is important and women who experience a combination of these symptoms almost daily for two to three weeks should see their doctor.

Doctors say it is not clear what causes ovarian cancer but there are factors that increase the odds of developing the disease including carrying a mutation of the BRCA gene, having a personal history of breast cancer or a family history of ovarian cancer, being over the age of 45 or if a woman is obese. If a woman is high-risk, doctors recommend screening begin at age 20 to 25, or five to 10 years earlier than the youngest age of diagnosis in the family. In addition, there are genetic tests available that can identify women who are at a substantially increased risk.

While ovarian cancer is difficult to detect, specialized centers such as the Northwestern Ovarian Cancer Early Detection and Prevention Program, a collaborative effort between the hospital and the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Centerof Northwestern University, have strategies for monitoring women at risk. Patients are monitored with physical examinations, ultrasound and blood tests every six months. “The goals of the program are to help women understand their personal risks and what they can do to decrease their risk, to help develop methods of early detection and prevention and to identify women who would benefit from preventive surgery,” said Singh, also an associate professor at the department of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and member of the Lurie Cancer Center.

Studies have shown there are ways to reduce the risk of developing the disease. Women who use birth control pills for at least five years are three-times less likely to develop ovarian cancer. In addition, permanent forms of birth control such as tubal ligation have been found to reduce the risk of ovarian cancer by 50 percent. In cases where women have an extensive family history of breast or ovarian cancer, or who carry altered versions of the BRCA genes, may receive a recommendation to remove the ovaries and fallopian tubes which lowers the risk of ovarian cancer by more than 95 percent.

“Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, getting regular exercise, maintaining a normal body weight and managing stresses are all ways women can help decrease their risk of ovarian cancer,” added Singh.

Treatment for ovarian cancer usually begins with surgery to determine if the cancer has spread. Doctors at Northwestern Memorial also use a form of chemotherapy called intraperitoneal chemotherapy, which is injected directly into the abdominal cavity and has been linked to a 15-month improvement in survival.

“The best scenario would be to prevent this cancer entirely but until that day comes women need to focus on good health behaviors, listen to their bodies and know their family history” stated Singh.

Source: Northwestern Memorial Hospital

A Pear and Strawberry Dessert Recipe from My Clippings


1/2 snow pear
140 g strawberries
3 tsp sugar
3 tsp cinnamon powder
120 g water
White chocolate sauce for garnish


  1. Peel and core pear. Set aside.
  2. Rinse strawberries. Blend with water and sugar in a blender.
  3. Add cinnamon powder to strawberry sauce, microwave for 15 minutes. Pour 2/3 portion into serving plate. Place pear in the centre of the plate. Pour the remaining sauce over the pear.
  4. Garnish with white chocolate sauce before seerving. Serve warm or cold.

Source: Hong Kong magazine