Jul 29, 2008

Go easy

My doctor told me that once we hit 40, we should go slow and easy with food stuff that are heavily laden with food additives, preservatives, colouring and MSG. A little of each of these ingredients goes a long way. In time, it builds up and it does not pass out properly. It clogs our arteries, forms into stones and collects inside the gall bladder or kidney.

That would mean that I have to eat at home more. So that I can add less of those harmful ingredients. The doctor knows I teach cooking and baking too. And he suggested that I teach my students the same too. To use less of these ingredients in their cooking or baking.

Lately, I have been experimenting with cakes and pastries that uses no baking powder, no baking soda, no leavening agents used in cakes like Sponge gel, or even Cream of Tartar in beating egg whites. I try to use low fat milk, less sugar and substitute it with natural fruits or ingredients that are already sweetened by Mother Nature herself.

And this is my latest healthy cake.. Dried Blueberries Chiffon.

When you use fresh or dried blueberries, and its heated at high temperatures, the colour changes to a mild greyish purple tint. If you eat a cake that claims to have Blueberries and its actually pure Purple in colour, then you know that they have added food colouring to tint the cake.

However, this cake of mine, is natural.

Here's the recipe for the Blueberry Chiffon cake
Ingredients A
5 egg yolks
80g plain flour

Ingredients B
5 egg white
80g fine sugar

Ingredients C
100 g dried blueberries
100ml low fat milk

1. Soak Set C in a small bowl for 1 hour.
2. Using a spoon, drain 2 tbsp of plump up blueberries. Set aside.
3. Puree the rest till smooth.
4. In a separate bowl, add egg yolks to beat evenly mixed.
5. Add pureed blueberries, whole blueberries and flour to mix evenly.
6. Beat egg whites in cake mixer till foamy.
7. Add sugar slowly and beat till egg white peaks.
8. Turn off mixer and fold in egg whites with the rest of the batter.
9. Pour batter into a tube pan and baked in preheated oven 160C for 40 mins
10. Remove and invert the tube pan and leave it out to cool completely before slicing.

I have also tried the traditional Christmas Fruit cake that was often raked in brandy or hard liquer. Mainly because some of my family members are not into brandy flavoured cakes. So I substituted Brandy for Yogurt. The end result was a delicious cake that both my family can enjoy and also my friends who cannot take wine/liquer due to religion or health issues.

And don't we loved those cookies but feared of extra calories of butter, sugar and eggs. Here's one with all the great smells, great taste but minus all the trans fat, and even extra calories.

We should all celebrate LIFE to the fullest. Errr...sorry,... rephrase that to :

Celebrate LIFE to the full minus all the extras!


Sandra said...

Hi Gina, I agree with the health care issues you brought up here. I am nearly half a century old and I have been advised similarly. One of the things I have made changes to my cooking skills is to cook with olive oil. It was difficult to start using olive oil for my stir fries but I realised that there was actually no compromise, if not little on the final taste.
Thanks for your wonderful recipes Gina. Appreciate you alot you know.

gina said...

Hi Sandra, thank you for your kind comments. I now cook with no salt, no MSG and very little seasonings. So much so that its very difficult for me to eat out now. Everything is laden with huge amounts of salt, seasoning and MSG. And yes, I use Olive oil for all my stir fries too. From Asian to western cuisine. To even making cookies with it to replace butter or any trans fat ingredient. Celebrate Life..minus all the extras!

Anonymous said...

HI Gina

This chiffon cake recipe is indeed v healthy. may i know what is the size of the tube tin to use for this recipe?