Friday, June 28, 2013

Methi baingan Sabzi- Egg plant / Brinjal with fenugreek

Methi baingan sabzi recipe is an Indian recipe. This was taught to me by my daughter in law Deepa Burli. Here goes the method to prepare this delicious subzi.

1.       Egg plant or Baingan or Brinjal – larger variety (the one used for bartha) – 1 Diced in  2 cms cubes and soaked in water
2.       Fresh Methi leaves or  fenugreek leaves –  1  cup - finely chopped
3.       Onion – 1 large – thinly sliced
4.       2 green chillies – slit
5.       Cooking oil – 2 tea spoon
6.       Salt to taste

Heat a non stick wok or kadahi . Pour oil in it. When oil is sufficiently heated add green chillies . When green chillies crackle add onion and fry them till they become transparent.  Transfer diced egg plant or baingan to wok and mix it well with onion. Add salt and simmer the flame. Cover a lid on wok and allow it to get cooked in low heat. When egg plant is half cooked add fresh fenugreek leaves and mix well. Cover the lid once again and leave it on low flame for 5 minutes. Serve this hot with chapathis.

Health facts of ingredients

Onion: Onion helps to rejuvenate liver, normalize digestion, relieve constipation and increase appetite. Hence it is very beneficial in piles (hemorrhoids) , constipation, jaundice and indigestion. White onions are recommended in bleeding disorders to reduce bleeding. Hence it is used in conditions like bleeding piles and bleeding through nose. Onions are used in home remedies to reduce cough. Onion and its seeds are known to help in erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation and male infertility. It helps to increase libido, quality and quantity of semen. It is a very good vajikara herb. It helps to reduce itching on skin.

Egg palnt or Brinjal or Baingan: It has high fiber content and helps in easy bowel movement. The anti oxidants present in this vegetable help to prevent cancer and coronary heart disease. It has good potassium content, hence helps to control blood pressure and maintain water electrolyte balance.

Fenugreek leaves : This green leafy vegetable is store house of iron. Hence this can be liberally used in anemia. It has good fiber content which helps in digestion and relieves constipation. Fenugreek leaves have property of controlling fluctuating blood sugar level and is recommended for diabetic patients.It contains protein and Vitamin K. Regular use of fenugreek leaves help in good growth of hair.

This article is copyrighted. Author Dr.Savitha Suri  at blog .

Thursday, June 27, 2013

10 tips to prevent loss of nutrients while cooking

Many of us are not aware that cooking destroys nutrients in food. Really does cooking destroy nutrients in food? Yes cooking destroys nutrients trapped in food. Here are ten tips to prevent loss of nutrients from food while cooking. These are tips for healthy cooking
  • Do not wash rice multiple times. This process leads to loss of nutrients present on surface of rice grains. Wash rice only once with good amount of water to remove dirt and dust present on surface. Never rub rice grains vigorously. This damages the surface of grains and paves ways to loss of nutrients. 
  •  Lemon is store house of Vitamin C. Vitamin C can easily get destroyed due to heat. Hence always squeeze lemon on cooked dishes after turning off the heat. Never heat the dish after lemon is squeezed.Never wash chopped or diced or cut vegetables. This process removes water soluble vitamins present on cut surface. Always wash vegetables first and then take them to chopping board. Avoid fine chopping as far as you can. Larger the vegetables pieces smaller is the nutrient loss
  • Avoid using cooking soda or baking soda as much as possible in recipes. Cooking soda destroys Vitamin Thiamine.
  • Never cook at high temperature for a long time. High temperature for a longer duration is always detrimental to nutrients. High temperatures always wipe out Vitamin B-Complex
  • Cook colored vegetables like carrot, beetroot, pumpkin etc at low temperature for a short time. This prevents destruction of Beeta carotene and anti oxidants present in these vegetables. Beeta carotenes protect your cells from the damaging effects of free radicals ,provide a source of vitamin A ,they enhance the functioning of your immune system and help your reproductive system function properly
  • Frequently include recipes which need fermentation. Fermentation makes food easily digestible. It increases bio availability of nutrients and enhances nutrient content of food. Many fermented foods contain nutrients which prevent cancer.
  • Use sprouts as much as you can. Germination destroys anti nutritional factors and enhances nutrients. Sprouted cereals and pulses are mostly used in many recipes. The process of sprouting breaks complex nutrients to their simpler forms. The nutrients in cereals or pulses multiply during the process of germination.
  • Percentage of loss of nutrients in pressure cooking and microwave cooking are same.
  • Avoid processed food as much as you can. These foods might have lost many nutrients while getting processed. Use whole wheat products instead of refined ones.
This article is copy righted. The author Dr.SavithaSuri is an Ayurvedic Physician and nutritionist

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Healthy Cooking Tips

More and more, Americans are avoiding the kitchen and relying on the convenient yet fattening fare offered at fast food restaurants and other national chains. While most people are aware that cooking at home is an effective way to save money, many of us ignore the fact that preparing our own meals can be beneficial to our health, as well. When taking steps to prepare meals in the healthiest possible way, you can not only develop a healthy relationship with food, but also probably have a little fun in the process. Most importantly for patients of weight-loss surgery, learning to prepare healthy meals is one of the biggest steps towards meeting long-term weight loss goals and maintaining healthy eating habits. The following tips represent just a sample of the many ways you can make the meals you prepare as healthy as possible.

Remove the Skin and Fat

Whenever you prepare chicken or any other type of meat, you should remove the skin and fat before cooking. Not only will you leave yourself the best-tasting portions, you will be able to avoid plenty of unwanted calories and unhealthy fat.

Cut the Oil in Half

If you prepare your meals from cookbooks or family recipes, add only half the amount of oil listed - or less - to all of your dishes. Though many cooking oils - such as olive, safflower, sesame and canola - contain unsaturated fats that can help lower cholesterol levels, these additives can also pack plenty of calories that can jeopardize your weight loss goals. If you consume these oils in moderation, you will be able to obtain the healthy benefits, retain the taste of your meals and stick to your weight loss goals.

Coat Your Pans with Cooking Spray or Chicken Broth

One of the easiest ways to avoid excess consumption of such cooking oils is to use cooking sprays and chicken broth instead. When sautéing meat or vegetables on the stovetop, coat your pans with a fat-free cooking spray or healthy chicken broth instead of traditional oils. Once you perfect the simple art of healthy sautéing, you will be able to enjoy meals that are not only healthier, but more delicious.

Pour in Skim Milk Instead of Cream

Much like the suggestion to substitute cooking sprays for oils, using skim milk - especially the evaporated variety for weight loss-surgery patients - instead of whole cream can help you trim fat and calories from your meals. People may also be surprised to hear that buttermilk is also naturally low in fat and is available in low fat and non-fat versions in some markets. When shopping for dairy products, you should also stock up on low-fat yogurt to use in lieu of sour cream or mayonnaise and low-fat cheese instead of the standard variety. Thick, creamy fat free or low fat Greek Yogurt serves as a delicious replacement as well.

Use Applesauce in Your Baked Goods

For all of your baked goods recipes, substitute applesauce for any type of cooking oil. However, you should definitely try to limit your consumption of baked goods, especially pastries that incorporate large amounts of sugar.

Cook with Fresh Spices

Rather than dousing your meals with unhealthy amounts of salt, you should also try to learn the art of cooking with fresh spices. Not only will spices add an incredible amount of flavor to your meals, you can season your food without worrying about the potentially dangerous effects of salt. However, be careful of packaged seasoning mixes as many contain excessive amounts of salt, destroying the benefit of using different spices.

Find Healthy Ways to Prepare Your Meals

Even if you follow all of the previous tips, using the wrong cooking methods can ruin the healthy benefits of your meals. As a result, you should avoid such cooking methods as frying. Instead, try steaming your vegetables and cooking your meats on a grill or in the oven. Your microwave also represents a healthy solution, as most foods can be cooked thoroughly without the use of oils or fatty cooking additives.

As you perfect the methods of healthy cooking, you should also try to enjoy the entire process of cooking - from the simple activities to the aromas. You may even want to purchase new pots, pans, utensils or cooking appliances to help you make the most of your healthy meals. Eating should be a relaxing experience and allowing yourself to enjoy cooking will help you develop a healthy lifelong relationship with food. Many people find success by making it a family activity to teach their children how to shop, cook and eat healthy.

Author:Carole S. Guinane