Food Tastings: Deliciously Healthy

The Philippines has the distinction of being the country that celebrates the Yuletide season the longest. As early as September, the Christmas songs come on, and the fairy lights are not that far behind. Know what else the season brings? Feasts! It’s pretty much an excuse to indulge, but who says that only rich, calorific meals have to be available for devouring? Healthy and delicious can be in your holiday goals, and polishing up on those lean recipes is exactly the goal of Food Tastings: Deliciously Healthy.

Food Tastings Deliciously Healthy

The third leg of the series—the first covered Italian food, while the second was all about Filipino favorites—features good-for-you recipes that coincide with the release of FOOD Magazine’s August-October issue. Hosted by Cynthia Patos of Lifestyle Network, the cooking demo on September 13 at Eastwood Mall’s Atrium will feature Chefs Matthew Bates (Early Breakfast Club), Roby Goco (Green Pastures), DJ Santos (Tefal), Nancy Dizon-Edralin (ICE Culinary and Saporro), and Anthony Macaraeg (Fit Burger).

 

Limited slots available, so be sure to register HERE on the double.

 

*Food+World+Me is a media partner for the Food Tastings series.

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Overnight Oats

Oh goodness… How did I not know about Overnight Oats before?! It’s basically three things that I’ve looked for in breakfast food since time immemorial: 1. It’s served cold; 2. It contains my daily dose of yogurt; and 3. You can prepare it in advance and not have to fumble for it in the morning.

Overnight Oats

*I’m sharing the step-by-step recipe, with photos! Let’s begin…

Ingredients

You’ll need a small container of yogurt (100g or 120g, either one is fine; flavor is completely up to you), some milk (soy, almond, full cream, etc.), and some muesli or plain rolled oats.

Step 1

Step 1: Scoop about 8 tbs of the oats into a bowl. Empty the container of yogurt into that same bowl and give it a thorough mixing. You’ll want the oats to be evenly coated with all that yogurt goodness.

Step 2

Step 2: Take that empty yogurt container and fill it up with milk. Yes, the ratio of yogurt to milk is 1:1. Pour half of the milk into the bowl and mix it up thoroughly once more. Pour the other half into the bowl and give it a quick stir or two, but let the milk float on top. Cover and refrigerate.

After all the mixing

It’ll be thicker the next morning as the oats have absorbed the liquid by then. Think of it as a healthier version of American pudding. If you want more of a milk-with-cereal texture, add extra milk right before eating. Another thing you may have observed is how interchangeable the ingredients are. This recipe is one that’s certainly yours to experiment with. 🙂

This is a big deal! There are tons of overnight oats recipes on the net that look so good, they must be unhealthy. Heehee. Click here for an example.

Happy breakfast!

*My cousin, Marianne, taught me how to make the Overnight Oats.

The Vitamin Fix

When we hit the road, we hit the road hard. When I say “we”, I mean just about anyone who I work or hang out with. It’s usually very intense when I’ve got work to do, so the sleep-deprived nights are part of the deal. Eventually, the immune system conks out from the fatigue and I start coming down with a cold, a cough, or a fever. Yes, I’m well-aware that my habits aren’t precisely to-die-for.

After all is said and done, there is no substitute for the genuine article: R&R (rest and relaxation). BUT if you find that you have to keep yourself going in spite of your exhaustion (be it from travel-related fatigue or work weariness), sometimes the best solution is to add some effervescence to the mix.

I am obsessed with effervescent vitamin tablets. It seems to me that they’re the fastest way to get a much-needed energy kick. Mind you, this is no Sting, Red Bull, or Cobra. The nice flavor and fizzed-up water provides a pick-me-up when you need something in a flash. Plus, if you don’t want to get out of control with the instant juice mixes, this is a pretty clever alternative.

As you can see from the photo, I’ve stocked up the best I can. Redoxon (leftmost and rightmost on the photo) seems to be readily available most anywhere except the Philippines. It’s sold in Canada, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Korea, etc. For the life of me, I haven’t found it in Manila. Optisana (second to the left) can be found in… Santi’s Delicatessen for PHP 96. Cheaper than Berocca, but I haven’t had the chance to compare vitamin content. Finally, Dr. Elizabeth’s (second to the right) was on sale, but I don’t remember the price.

The con? Make no mistake, these are all sugar-free but contain aspartame. That’s why I still take the regular old pill-form vitamins. I just like to have one of these canisters in my purse for when I’m feeling like something nasty is about to come on. A little vitamin boost may just be what the doctor ordered…

Fruit & Lettuce Smoothie

While I highly doubt that going vegan is on the cards for me, I still try to make a conscious effort to eat (and drink!) healthy. Coincidentally, I had some organic lettuce lying around the house last week and was inspired by this recipe for Green Goddess Smoothie to make my own green smoothie. –The similarities end there, by the way: My ingredients are completely different.

Blend together the following:

  • some ice
  • A handful or two of lettuce (the sweeter varieties are advisable, though I personally used a bag of assorted greens)
  • 2-3 slices of cantaloupe
  • 5-8 grapes
  • some tofu (optional)

If you’re looking for a great fiber fix, this one’s for you. The lettuce does wonders, so add more if you want to up your fiber intake.

In terms of taste, using assorted greens will give a bitter tinge because of the lollo rosso. But as I didn’t mind that mild “kick”, I went ahead with it. The resulting drink has the color of pesto and a “green” taste reminiscent of wheatgrass.

The grapes act as the main sweetener and highlighting flavor for this drink, so you can add more or less, depending on your sweetness preference.

I can’t promise you that this is going to taste like something from Jamba Juice, but I am so impressed by the fiber from the lettuce that I’m making it my new smoothie key ingredient alongside tofu.

 

Happy Drinking! 🙂

Call It Spring Rolls!

Taking a page from my recent trip to Vietnam, I decided to try and adapt the Saigonese food philosophy. They seem to have the healthiest staples to their diets, what with all those greens and herbs. It’s a health buff’s fantasy.

I’ve purchased spring roll wrappers and some lettuce, and I’ve been wrapping most anything in them for some quick and healthy snacks. I guess it makes me feel less guilty than if I had settled on a bowl of rice. (Doesn’t make much sense, I know, seeing as spring roll wrappers are made of rice… Humor me.)

Pork barbecue was prepared for today’s lunch, so I decided to get a little creative. Ta-dah!

Dinner is served

Easy-peasy! All it takes are some hydrated spring roll sheets, some well-seasoned pork barbecue, some fresh lettuce, and some special sauce. The secret is:

All hail the tasty sauce

I tell you, Peri-peri sauce is a great find! I got mine for PHP 75 from Peri-Peri Grillhouse in SM Megamall. It adds so much flavor to anything because of all the spices they mix in. This is coming from a “spice girl” who doesn’t use hot sauce for the heat alone. The explosion of flavor that comes from this bottle is not exaggerated. Plus, the Mild variety packs just the right punch.

Those on an I-Can’-Eat-Anything! diet may want to try this out. I read that chili is good for speeding up the metabolism. Here’s to hoping that it’s true…