My Recipe

Indonesian Gado Gado Salad

Ingredients:

10 oz (about 3 small) potato
10 oz cauliflower florets
6 oz (fresh or frozen) green bean
6 oz cucumber
6 oz carrot
4 hard-boiled egg

Dressing:

1½ Tbsp oil
1 Tbsp garlic (minced)
12 fluid oz coconut milk
4½ Tbsp light peanut butter creamy
3 Tbsp lime juice
4½ Tbsp chopped roasted peanut
1½ Tbsp fish sauce
3 Tbsp Indonesian sweet soy sauce
2 tsp fresh Thai bird chili (minced)

Method:

  1. Cook potato in slightly salted water until fork tender. Cool and peel off skin. Cut into 1/2-inch thick slices or pieces.
  2. Trim off ends of cucumber. Cut lengthwise into 2-inch long pieces. Remove seeds and cut diagonally into thin slices.
  3. Cut carrot into 1½-inch long thick strips.
  4. Trim off tips from fresh green bean (if using). Cut into 1½-inch long pieces.
  5. Cut hard-boiled egg into slices or quarters.
  6. Bring a large wok of water to a boil. Add some salt and mix well. Add cauliflower and bring to boil. Cook for 1 minute. Add carrot and cook for another 2 minutes. Remove and drain.
  7. Reboil water in wok. Add green bean. When water reboils, simmer for 2 minutes (for frozen bean) and 4 to 5 minutes (for fresh bean). Refresh in ice cold water and drain.
  8. To make dressing: Heat oil in a sauce pan. Saute garlic and chili until fragrant. Add peanut butter and stir until heated through. Add coconut milk, fish sauce, Indonesian soy sauce and lime juice. Simmer for about 3 minutes or until sauce thickens. Add chopped roasted peanut and mix well. Cool.
  9. Arrange all salad ingredients on a serving platter. Spoon over dressing evenly and toss slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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Formerly Meat-obsessed Chefs Are Now Putting Veggies Centre Stage

Chris Johns wrote . . . . . .

The pig’s foot lay on the table like a threat. It was billed on The Breslin’s menu as serving two, but looked like it could feed a battalion. Stuffed to bursting with pork meat and skin, braised, rolled in breadcrumbs and, for good measure, fried in butter and olive oil, the massive trotter was all sticky, viscous goodness and fat. It represented excess and guaranteed a sleepless night. It was delicious and I would never eat it again.

The chef responsible for that fantastic monstrosity of a dish is April Bloomfield, a British import to the U.S. and the co-owner of several renowned New York City restaurants including the Spotted Pig and Salvation Taco. She made her reputation with a kind of exuberant, meat-centric cooking that includes an infamous half-pound, Roquefort-topped burger, wild boar Scotch eggs and a crispy pig’s ear salad.

Consequently, it might come as something of a surprise that her latest book, A Girl and Her Greens, is filled with recipes for things like braised peas and little gem lettuce, spiced carrots with yogurt and steamed and raw radish salad. Bloomfield, an early proponent of the nose-to-tail movement, has not embraced veganism and, as her recipe for sweet potatoes with bone marrow and chili attests, she’s not removing animal protein entirely from the equation. She is simply tapping into a way of eating that moves the emphasis on the plate from meat to vegetables and she’s far from alone.

All around the world, chefs who made their names slinging ungodly amounts of fat-streaked meat are getting in touch with their inner vegetarian and, while not eschewing meat completely, celebrating vegetables as the stars of the plate. Last year, multi-Michelin-starred chef Alain Ducasse shook the food world when he announced that his flagship restaurant in the Plaza Athénée hotel in Paris would remove nearly all of the meat from the menu in favour of organic vegetables and seafood.

In Los Angeles, Roy Choi, the man who gave us Korean barbecue short-rib tacos and double-meat spicy pork burritos at Kogi, opened Commissary,a garden-themed restaurant that he describes as “vegetable-driven, but not vegetarian.” Even Montreal’s Joe Beef duo, David McMillan and Fred Morin, the chefs responsible for inflicting the Foie Gras Double Down on an unsuspecting public, opened Le Vin Papillon, a wine bar with a vegetable-focused menu.

For chef Hugh Acheson, whose own new book, The Broad Fork: Recipes for the wide world of vegetables and fruit, emphasizes a vegetable-centric style of cooking, the trend has both economic and social benefits.

“I live in the American South, and we’ve got a very big issue with poverty,” says the Canadian-born chef who operates four restaurants (Five & Ten, The National, Cinco y Diez and Empire State South) out of Georgia. “We’ve got a big issue with food security, and the health of our citizenry is really dependent on them eating more vegetables and smaller amounts of meat.”

“It’s an economic thing, too,” he continues. “We’ve seen these luxurious, beautiful proteins climb in price to a point where we just can’t afford to do what we did before. We can’t just walk into a fine dining restaurant and there’s a 7- or 8-ounce portion of meat. We had to adjust years ago to portion size being an economy of scale and being a correct economic assumption on the plate.”

Beyond any social value, Acheson admits that this new style of cooking more closely reflects his own diet. “If I have fried chicken, it’s a thigh of fried chicken beautifully done, but then running down the table is succotash and sliced tomato and sautéed greens and perloo and favas and spring green beans and that spread and that multitude of choice is what people want more.” Acheson believes the evolution of lifestyles and work patterns is to blame for the quest to feel healthier via a more balanced meal.

Fellow Southerner Steven Satterfield, whose book Root to Leaf also emphasizes vegetables, notes that “there’s this misconception that everything in the South is cooked in pork fat or cream or butter; that Southern food is really unhealthy. But we were an agrarian society long before anybody coined the term farm-to-table. There’s always been lots of farming and agriculture here. I think that’s part of the history around here, but it’s also a part of the trend to eat fresh food that’s real food.”

Satterfield’s book, while drawing inspiration from the South isn’t exclusively a Southern cookbook. “The focus of the book is really looking at seasonal cooking through what’s being harvested at any given time,’ he explains. ”Fruits and vegetables, in particular, and some nuts and grains.” In compiling the book, he took almost the complete opposite approach to how most chef-driven cookbooks are structured. “I thought it was important to have a little bit of meat throughout the book,” he says. “But the meats are sub-recipes. I came at it the same way we build our menus at the restaurant.” Satterfield, the chef at Miller Union in Atlanta, starts with the farmer’s list and decides which vegetables are going to be on the plate, how they’re going to work flavour-wise and texture-wise, and then pairs them with a protein.

“I have customers who tell me they decide what protein they’re going to order based on the side dish that comes with it,” he says. That seems like a smart strategy, especially when some of the world’s best chefs are developing such a satisfyingly savoury approach to eating your veggies.

Source: The Globe and Mail

The U.S. FDA Takes Step to Remove Artificial Trans Fats in Processed Foods

Action expected to reduce coronary heart disease and prevent thousands of fatal heart attacks every year.

Based on a thorough review of the scientific evidence, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration today finalized its determination that partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs), the primary dietary source of artificial trans fat in processed foods, are not “generally recognized as safe” or GRAS for use in human food. Food manufacturers will have three years to remove PHOs from products.

“The FDA’s action on this major source of artificial trans fat demonstrates the agency’s commitment to the heart health of all Americans,” said FDA’s Acting Commissioner Stephen Ostroff, M.D. “This action is expected to reduce coronary heart disease and prevent thousands of fatal heart attacks every year.”

This determination will significantly reduce the use of PHOs, the major source of artificial trans fats, in the food supply. In 2013, the FDA made a tentative determination that PHOs could no longer be considered GRAS and is finalizing that determination after considering public comments.

Since 2006, manufacturers have been required to include trans fat content information on the Nutrition Facts label of foods. Between 2003 and 2012, the FDA estimates that consumer trans fat consumption decreased about 78 percent and that the labeling rule and industry reformulation of foods were key factors in informing healthier consumer choices and reducing trans fat in foods. While trans fat intake has significantly decreased, the current intake remains a public health concern. The Institute of Medicine recommends that consumption of trans fat be as low as possible while consuming a nutritionally-adequate diet.

“Studies show that diet and nutrition play a key role in preventing chronic health problems, such as cardiovascular disease and today’s action goes hand in hand with other FDA initiatives to improve the health of Americans, including updating the nutrition facts label,” said Susan Mayne, Ph.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. “This determination is based on extensive research into the effects of PHOs, as well as input from all stakeholders received during the public comment period.”

The FDA has set a compliance period of three years. This will allow companies to either reformulate products without PHOs and/or petition the FDA to permit specific uses of PHOs. Following the compliance period, no PHOs can be added to human food unless they are otherwise approved by the FDA.

The FDA encourages consumers seeking to reduce trans fat intake to check a food’s ingredient list for partially hydrogenated oils to determine whether or not a product contains PHOs. Currently, foods are allowed to be labeled as having “0” grams trans fat if they contain less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving, including PHOs, the primary dietary source of artificial trans fat in processed foods.

Many companies have already been working to remove PHOs from processed foods and the FDA anticipates that many may eliminate them ahead of the three-year compliance date.

Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services


Read More . . . . .

The 100-year-old scientist who pushed the FDA to ban artificial trans fat . . . . .

New Nutrition Facts Panels in Canada Won’t Have Line on Added Sugars


Enlarge image . . . . .

Carly Weeks wrote . . . . .

Nutrition facts panels in Canada are getting a makeover, with changes to serving sizes and a streamlined definition of sugar designed to help consumers cut through the complexity of current labels.

Despite an earlier proposal, the nutrition labels Health Minister Rona Ambrose unveiled on Friday will not have a line spelling out exactly how many grams of sugar have been added to a particular product. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, on the other hand, is pushing for a mandatory “added sugars” line on food labels south of the border.

Ms. Ambrose said one of the most significant changes will be the introduction of a “per cent daily value” for sugar, which is supposed to help people determine whether a particular food serving has a lot of, or a little, sugar. The bottom of each nutrition panel will tell consumers that a daily value of 5 per cent or less is a small amount, while 15 per cent or more is large.

The per-cent daily value will be based on a total of 100 grams of sugar. It will not distinguish between natural sugars in fruit and dairy products, and so-called “free” sugars in fruit juice, soft drinks or sweetened cereals and yogurts.

Experts like Yoni Freedhoff, assistant professor of family medicine at the University of Ottawa, say that is a serious misstep because research shows “free” sugars, which include sugar added to foods, as well as honey, syrups, and fruit juice, are linked to health problems, while fruits, yogurt and other natural sources of sugar are important elements of healthy diets.

“The evidence points to added sugars having unique risks to human health,” Dr. Freedhoff said.

Sugar has been one of the most controversial aspects of the government’s overhaul of nutrition labels. Several large studies have linked moderate and high sugar intake to heart disease, stroke, diabetes and other serious health problems. Mounting public concern prompted the government to overhaul the way sugar is presented on Canadian nutrition facts panels.

The federal government’s changes will also create more standardized serving sizes for similar food items, making it easier for consumers to compare in the grocery store aisle. The mandated serving sizes are also intended to reflect more accurately how much people eat. For instance, the serving size for a loaf of bread will be two slices, not one.


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Enlarge image . . . . .

Source: The Globe and Mail


Read more

Government of Canada announces proposed new nutrition labels and tools to promote healthier food choices . . . . .

Health Canada proposes new nutrition labels; new DV for total sugar deemed unhelpful . . . . .

Health Canada Giving Food Industry Nearly 7 YEARS to Adopt New Labels! . . . . .

Appetizer of Shrimp and Bell Pepper

Ingredients

500 g raw jumbo shrimp, in their shells
2 tbsp Spanish olive oil
2 red bell peppers, cored, seeded, and thinly sliced
5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
juice of 1/2 lemon
6 tbsp dry sherry
salt and pepper

Method

  1. Pull off the heads of the shrimp. With your fingers, peel away the shells, leaving the tails intact. Using a sharp knife, make a shallow slit along the underside of each shrimp, then use the tip of the knife to lift out the dark vein and discard. Rinse the shrimp under cold running water and pat dry with paper towels.
  2. Heat the oil in a large skillet, then add the red bell pepper slices and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until softened. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds until softened.
  3. Add the shrimp to the skillet and cook, tossing constantly, for 1-2 minutes, or until the shrimp turn pink. Add the lemon juice and sherry and cook for an additional 2 minutes, or until the shrimp begin to curl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve hot.

Makes 8 servings.

Source: Tapas


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