Pork Trotters in Mixed Sauce (混醤炆豬手)


20 oz pork trotters
1 tbsp hoisin sauce
1 tbsp chu hau sauce (柱侯醤)
2 slices ginger
2 stalks spring onion, cut into sections
1 tsp minced garlic
2 cups chicken broth


1 tsp crushed rock sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp dark soy sauce


  1. Blanch pork trotter in boiling water briefly and drain.
  2. Heat a little oil and saute minced garlic, ginger slices and spring onion sections. Add hoisin sauce and chu hau sauce and stir-fry briefly.
  3. Return pork to sauce and mix well.
  4. Add broth and seasoning. Simmer until trotter is tender.
  5. Serve hot.

Source: Recipes from Great Chefs in Hong Kong

Pork with Camembert Cheese


3/4 to 1 lb pork fillet
l tbsp butter
3 tbsp sparkling dry cider or dry white wine
1/2—3/4 cup creme fraiche or whipping cream
1 tbsp chopped fresh mixed herbs, such as marjoram, thyme and sage
1/2 Camembert cheese (4 oz), rind removed (2-1/2 oz without rind), sliced
1-1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
freshly ground black pepper
fresh parsley, to garnish


  1. Slice the pork fillet crosswise into small steaks about 3/4-inch thick. Place between two sheets of greaseproof paper or clear film and pound with the flat side of a meat mallet or roll with a rolling pin to flatten to a thickness of 1/2-inch. Sprinkle with pepper.
  2. Melt the butter in a heavy frying pan over a medium-high heat until it begins to brown, then add the meat. Cook for 5 minutes, turning once, or until just cooked through and the meat is springy when pressed. Transfer to a warm dish and cover to keep warm.
  3. Add the cider or wine and bring to a boil, scraping the base of the pan. Stir in the cream and herbs and bring back to the boil.
  4. Add the cheese and mustard and any accumulated juices from the meat. Add a little more cream if needed and adjust the seasoning. Serve the pork with the sauce and garnish with parsley.

Makes 3 to 4 servings.

Source: Taste of France

In Pictures: Food of Écriture in Hong Kong

French Cuisine with Japanese Produce

The 2020 Michelin 2-star Restaurant

All Common Blood Pressure Medications Do Not Increased Depression Risk

None of the 41 most common high blood pressure medications increased the risk of depression, while nine medications appeared to lower it, according to a study from Denmark, published today in Hypertension, an American Heart Association journal.

Depression is common among patients with high blood pressure (also called hypertension), heart disease and stroke, and this is the first study to systematically investigate whether individual blood pressure medications might influence the risk of developing depression.

“It was highly surprising that none of the 41 most-used anti-hypertensives was associated with increased risk of developing depression and that some within each of the three classes of anti-hypertensives showed protective effects against depression,” said Lars Vedel Kessing, M.D., D.M.Sc., lead author of the study and professor of psychiatry at the Psychiatric Center Copenhagen and the University of Copenhagen, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences in Denmark.

Researchers analyzed real-life data on more than 3.7 million adults who took any of the 41 most-commonly prescribed high blood pressure medications, as reported in health records across several Danish health registries from 2005 to 2015. Thirty-seven of these medications are approved for use in the U.S. by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Patients who had been diagnosed with depression or previously prescribed antidepressants were excluded.

The four main categories of blood pressure-lowering medications were reviewed: angiotensin agents (angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors, ACE inhibitors and angiotensin II receptor blockers, or ARBs); calcium antagonists; beta-blockers; and diuretics.

The analysis found:

  • None of the 41 most common high blood pressure medications increased the risk of depression.
  • Nine medications – a few within each category – significantly lowered depression risk: 2 of 16 angiotensin agents, 3 of 10 calcium antagonists and 4 of 15 beta-blockers.
  • Diuretic medications showed no impact on depression risk.

The nine individual high blood pressure medications found to significantly lower depression risk are enalapril and ramipril (angiotensin agents); amlodipine, verapamil and verapamil combinations (calcium antagonists); and propranolol, atenolol, bisoprolol and carvedilol (beta-blockers). All nine are approved for prescribing in the U.S.

“It is possible that the mechanism involved in decreasing the risk of depression is the anti-inflammatory effect among these nine medications,” Kessing continued. “In the future, it will be important to compare the inflammatory properties of these nine hypertensives that lowered depression risk.” (Low-grade inflammation is common in high blood pressure and heart disease, as well as in depression.)

“Our study’s findings could help guide prescriptions for patients with high blood pressure who are at risk of developing depression, those with prior depression or anxiety, and patients with a family history of depression,” said Kessing. “However, if a patient is doing well with their current blood pressure prescription, there is no reason to switch. If depression develops, a medication switch may be considered to one of the nine anti-hypertensive medications that lowered depression risk.”

The findings of this study are likely generalizable to other populations. However, limitations of the study include it relied on a clinical diagnosis of depression, that it was not a controlled clinical trial that randomly selected which medication patients receive, and that the impact on depression risk was analyzed for each high blood pressure medication individually; they were not tested side by side or as combinations of one or more other antihypertensive medications.

Source: American Heart Association

Study Finds Self-Collected Saliva and Deep Nasal Swabs Are Equally Effective for the Diagnosis of COVID-19

Self-collected saliva and deep nasal swabs collected by healthcare providers are equally effective for detecting SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, according to a new study conducted by ARUP Laboratories and University of Utah (U of U) Health.

The study, published in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology, represents one of the largest prospective specimen type comparisons to date, said Julio Delgado, MD, MS, ARUP chief medical officer. Other studies, including one from the Yale School of Public Health, have reached similar conclusions but with markedly fewer patients and specimens.

Researchers also found that specimens self-collected from the front of the nose are less effective than deep nasal swabs for virus detection. This finding prompted a subsequent study that has not yet been published in which researchers learned they could improve the sensitivity of anterior nasal swab testing to 98% by combining an anterior nasal swab with a swab collected from the back of the throat.

The results have important implications for patients and providers. The collection process for saliva and anterior nasal specimens is less invasive than the deep nasal, or nasopharyngeal, swab. In addition, both specimen types can be self-collected, reducing the risk of exposure for healthcare workers who collect nasopharyngeal specimens, said Kimberly Hanson, MD, MPH, section chief of clinical microbiology at ARUP and the primary author of the study.

“Saliva and nasal swab self-collection can resolve many of the resource and safety issues involved in SARS-CoV-2 diagnostic testing,” Delgado said.

ARUP and U of U Health anticipate being able to start offering testing on saliva in some U of U Health clinical settings in early September. They already are using anterior nasal swabs in combination with throat swabs to test some asymptomatic individuals.

COVID-19 testing on these alternatives to nasopharyngeal swabs will increase with time, Delgado said. “From the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, ARUP has worked to build capacity for high-quality COVID-19 testing,” he said. “Our goal is to make this testing available to hospitals and healthcare systems nationwide.”

Hanson and her colleagues analyzed more than 1,100 specimens from 368 volunteers at the U of U Health Redwood Health Center drive-through testing site from late May through June. Volunteers self-collected saliva that they spit into a tube and swabbed from the front of both nostrils to produce specimens for testing. The researchers compared test results from these specimen types with test results from nasopharyngeal swabs healthcare providers collected from the volunteers. Discrepant results across specimens collected from the same patient triggered repeat testing using a second polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based platform.

The study showed that SARS-CoV-2 was detected in at least two specimen types in 90% of the patients who tested positive for the virus.

As a standalone alternative specimen to nasopharyngeal swabs, saliva proved to be an excellent option, Hanson said. Positivity rates for saliva specimens were nearly the same as those for nasopharyngeal specimens.

The research showed that self-collected nasal swabs, when used alone, can miss nearly 15% of infections, which prompted researchers’ further study combining them with oropharyngeal, or throat swabs.

Source: University of Utah

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