Saturday, January 26, 2013


the cool vegetarian day
cucumber sandwich recipe
trying out health tips, like eating fruits and veggies only for a day,
i have decided to instead, have a vegetarian diet once a week.
Feels fine, light and easy to prepare and lighter , easier for the tummy.
very simple ingredients
1 medium size cucumber
14 pieces sandwich bread slices
7 tbsp finely minced fresh mint leaves... love this
Some nutmeg powder, salt, pepper and paprika
Unsalted butter for spread
Hazelnut butter / peanut butter for spread- if you are a health freak, use the organic variety
the cool way to prepare 
Mix butter with mint leaves, nutmeg powder, salt, pepper and paprika.
Slice cucumber slightly thicker than thin for a crunchy taste and dab with paper towels to dry.. or sandwich between two paper towels.
Slice off bread crust for a cool look
Spread butter mix on 7 pieces of bread for base of sandwich.
Arrange cucumber slices on bread
Spread hazelnut butter for remaining 7 pieces of bread and place on cucumber, as sandwich top


Using a sharp knife, cut each sandwich into four making  squares, for a cool look

Arrange sandwiches at random on a white plate for an even cooler look

Ensure your thumb and middle finger handles this delicately and enjoy the cooling effect of cucumber and mint…..
you never know how delicious and crunchy this healthy treat is…

Saturday, January 19, 2013


culinary herbs
lemon thyme
and A special issue on
great comments made in my blog from visitors,
whom i can’t return their visits-  either they are non-bloggers or have  disabled their comment boxes.
wild betel leaves - Piper sarmentosum
Thank you guys for all your great comments, which some of you have even   put them in an amusing manner and I had great fun reading all of them. Since you are either non bloggers or your comment boxes were disabled, i take the liberty to publish one of your few comments  here in honor of your visits.. hope you all don’t miss this..
First comment-
1-"Dear Wan, always a pleasure to visit your blog. Very informative and neat. Thank you for sharing and i appreciate the perfection in preparing your n3s.Take care and keep writing from Uncle AL in Penang ( my post on food energy and sources)" –
Thank you Dato AL and Datin Ina for your sweet comments always.. you are both most welcome and your visits most appreciated. God Bless you both-wan
purple flower chives
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When collagen is made available to the wound bed, closure can occur. Wound deterioration, followed sometimes by procedures such as amputation, can thus be avoided.  You're really amazing.2 thumbs up!!"!- Patrick Del Rosario  commented on my post  "DIETS AND STOMACH CANCER AND METASTISIS": 

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left pic- licorice

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left pic- malaysian basil

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above pic- common sage-Salvia officinalis2

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left pic- karpuravalli in telugu-medicinal herb

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pic- mint leaves

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left pic- flowering oregano

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left pic- terragon

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left pic- cilantro
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left pic- rosemary

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left pic- kafir lime leaves

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left pic- common sage-Salvia officinalis2

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left pic- curry leaves

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left pic- bay leaves

below pic-laksa bush (vietnamese coriander)

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Sunday, January 13, 2013


comfort foods 
yellow glutinous rice 
Comfort foods may be consumed to positively pique the emotions, 
to relieve negative psychological effects or 
to increase positive feelings. The term was first used, 
according to Webster’s Dictionary, in 1977.
comfort food is:
-a traditionally eaten foodwhich often provides a nostalgic or sentimental feeling to the eater, or to his culture.
-a food that gives the eater an easy-to-digest meal, soft in consistency, rich in calories, nutrients, flavorful etc.
Chicken soup is a common comfort food across cultures and is widely regarded as folk remedy for the common cold/ flu.

Some interesting finds on studies done on comfort food in the US-

1-Males preferred warm, hearty, meal-related comfort foods (such as steak, casseroles and soup). Triggered by positive emotions

2-Females preferred comfort foods that were more snack related (such as chocolate and ice cream). Triggered by negative emotions

3-Comfort food eating is mainly due to emotional stress and became a key contributor to the epidemic of obesity.
nasi lemak- rice steamed with a coconut milk and pandanus
For us here, we have our most nostalgic and cultured comfort foods like nasi lemak, nasi dagang, roti canai, capati, tosei (dosai), chicken rice, rice porridge(congee), chicken noodles soup, fried chicken, goreng pisang (banana fritters), pulut kuning (yellow glutinous rice), tempe (fermented soya bean-of Javanese origin) preserved fruits (sweet sour)… to name a few.
hainanese chicken rice
roti canai, tosei (dosai) and capati
yellow glutinous rice with coconut filling
pulut kuning cooking-varieties- nusantara recipe
The  Sweet coconut paste should be cooked first, before  you start cooking the glutinous rice.
for Coconut filling  
1 cup fresh grated coconut
½ cup melted natural palm sugar- this is done by boiling sugar with some water (about 1 ½ cups)
Use a wok and heat coconut and sugar. Stir continously until mixture dries up. 
Turn off fire. Remove from heat.
for glutinous rice
2 cups glutinous rice
1 tablespoon turmeric powder/ fresh turmeric juice is better.
¾- 1 cup pure coconut milk and add
1 tablespoon salt to coconut milk- to enhance flavor
Wash glutinous rice. Soak it overnight in water with turmeric powder added to the water. This will give the rice a vibrant bright yellow color.
Note-You can do the coconut filling today, for use tomorrow- it will not get spoilt.
Next day, drain water and place glutinous rice on a steamer pan.
Fill up Steamer pot with water and put to boil. When water has already boiled, put Steamer pan onto the Steamer pot and close tightly with lid cover. Wait for 25 minutes. Open the lid and taste one rice grain, if it is cooked, put off fire.
Scoop out the glutinous rice and put in a large mixing bowl. Drizzle salted coconut milk evenly all over rice and mix well. The color will darken a little, giving a shiny texture.
Then, shape the rice anyway you like because it is easy to shape sticky glutinous rice.
You may fill it in a serving bowl and compress it (see picture), then eat with chicken rendang (stewed spicy chicken) or any gravy like chicken curry.
Or shape into cones and alternate fill up with sweet coconut paste.
This is traditionally served for breakfast or for tea and is typically served during any kenduri/ feast giving thanks 
tempe(soya bean fermented)

Saturday, January 5, 2013


food energy and sources
high and low energy foods

high energy foods are best eaten in their highest energy form, which is in raw state.

eating is sustainance- mostly, must also become medicinal
preventing and healing illness food, is medicinal
yogurt with fruit topping
Nearly all cases of mid-morning blahs, afternoon space-outs, and general exhaustion at work can be attributed to low blood sugar. If we grab a cup of coffee and a bagel at 7:30AM on our way to work, the caffeine and carbohydrates offer a powerful but short-lived energy boost. It's almost a guarantee that by 10:30AM we will be spacing out again.

This isn't to say that carbohydrates are bad; we still need them to live and for basic brain function.
A diet comprised mainly of carbo, however, is a recipe for ”a constant cycle of blood sugar highs, lows, and the accompanying feelings of exhaustion that go with them”.

A diet on protein, is a recipe for the “slow burning that keeps one going”. Ideally the blood sugar and energy levels should be slow and steady (as in protein), not swinging wildly up and down (as in carbo).

high energy breakfast menu
Some of the high protein breakfast foods to choose from:
-Eggs- Scramble, fry, poach, hard boil etc- high protein content and a good source of fat and vitamin A.
-Protein powder –add this in the cereal or beverage
-High protein breakfast cereal (eg kashi above), not just any cereal
-Peanut butter, sweetened with a little honey, instead of jelly on toast.
-Yogurt- a great source of protein and choose the plain/unsweetened type. The fruity kind is packed with sugar.
On snacks- eat food that is high in protein and complex carbohydrates.
Drink water regularly. The minor signs of dehydration include lethargy, headaches, muscle pain and a general sense of confusion. Water also helps us feel more energized. Link here

our body needs energy
wiki-Food energy is the amount of energy obtained from food that is available through cellular respiration. Food energy is expressed in kilojoules or food calories.
The human body uses the energy released by respiration for a wide range of purposes: about 20% of the energy is used for brain metabolism.

The rest of energy  is used mainly for metabolic requirements of other organs and tissues.
Energy is also used for the production of mechanical energy by skeletal muscle to maintain posture and produce motion.

In cold environments, higher metabolism is needed to produce heat to maintain body temperature- higher metabolism will burn more calories, thus need more/ higher energy.

Carbohydrates, fiber, fats, proteins, organic acids, plyols and ethanol all release energy during metabolism—this is often called 'food energy'. When nutrients react with oxygen in the cells of living things, energy is released.

a good diEt helps to heal sickness

Avoid poor diet and learn to de-stress. It helps the body cope better.

High energy foods support the natural healing process. The more raw, the more healing they are.

Separate out our personal list of ‘good foods’ and ‘bad foods’. We need to know which foods give good nutrients for the body to naturally heal itself and which foods weaken the body’s immune system.

Recognize what foods and some of their symptoms. Eating an apple, for example, is generally good, but to a patient suffering from CFS (chronic fatigue syndrome), this may cause him pain, fatigue (tiredness), a sense of depression, itching eyes, headache, palpitations or other reactions.

The body tends to heal itself. To maximise that healing power, one must increase the overall vitality (energy) of the body, so that natural defences can fight whatever complex factors are causing illness.

‘High energy foods’ eliminate toxins and enable healthy absorption in the gut. 

Scientific research has shown that raw vegetables not only boost immune function but actually kill the bad bacteria in the gut (bad bacteria overload is part of what is making us feel so ill).

High sugar food, chemical exposure, long time taking antibiotics, can kill off the beneficial flora in the gut (which is an important part of our immune system to fight illness).
Immune boosting foods are:
-Take the highest energy food: Garlic
-By all means eat some dark chocolate (70% cocoa) now and then. No milk. Coco increase blood flow to the brain. It also creates a happy aura.
"Research findings indicate that milk may interfere with the absorption of antioxidants from chocolate ... milk may remove the potential health benefits from eating dark chocolate."
-Whole grains (which are not depleted of iron, vitamins and fiber)
-Pulses (beans) which contain fiber and nutrients
-Fresh fruit and vegetables, full of Vitamins C and E, beta carotene, fiber and natural sugars
-Low fats which do not deplete oxygen
-Fish rich in vitamins and Omega 3 (oily fish)
-Eggs rich in iron, zinc and magnesium
-White meat, cooked in unsaturated fat
-Olive oil and garlic (medicinally used since ancient times). Link here

Thursday, January 3, 2013


foods that can lower cholesterol.

blue prawns bbq recipe

As with other seafood, prawn/ shrimp is high in calcium, iodine and protein but low in food energy. A shrimp-based meal is also a significant source of cholesterol, (122mg-251 mg per 100gram of shrimp), depending on the method of preparation.

However, shrimp consumption is considered healthy for the circulatory system, because of low levels of saturated fats in shrimps.

This means the high cholesterol content in shrimp actually improves the ratio of LDL to HDL cholesterol and lowers triglycerides.(In humans,triglycerides are a mechanism for storing unused calories, and their high concentration in blood correlates with the consumption of starchy and other high carbohydrate foods).Note: according to one dietician, it is the head that has high cholesterol, not the body.
fresh water blue prawns bbq
I prefer a simple marinade to compliment the already delicious prawn  flavor.
Just blend 2 stalks of already sliced lemon grass. Keep juice and remove residue. Mix lemon grass juice with lime juice and salt.
Marinade prawns for two hours in the fridge.  Next, rub in garlic oil, ready for varieties copyright images
Foods that can lower cholesterol,
from the Harvard Heart Letter oct’09  link here
white eggplant-cooking varieties copyright
lower cholesterol- may lower heart disease risks
Different foodies that can lower cholesterol levels.
Some foodies contain soluble fiber, which binds to cholesterol in the digestive system. 
The fiber  then drags the cholesterol out of the body... in this way, cholesterol is removed. 
Oats, barley, other whole grains, beans, eggplant and okra (lady's finger) are good examples.
Okra seeds may be roasted and ground to form a caffeine-free substitute for coffee. I dunno how it tastes, never tried :( :) the okra leaves are edible as in beet root and dandelions. May be i should try cook the shoots, as in mix veggies.

Fruits such as apples, grapes, strawberries and citrus are rich in a type of soluble fiber called pectin.

purple eggplant-cooking varieties copyright
Some foodies contain polyunsaturated fats, which can lower LDL, the "bad" cholesterol. Nuts and vegetable oils are some examples.

Nuts- Studies showed that eating 2 ounces of nuts daily— like almonds, walnuts and peanuts—can lower LDL around 5%.

Vegetable oils such as canola, sunflower, safflower instead of using butter or shortening.

Food fortified with sterols and stanols
Sterols and stanols gum up the body’s ability to absorb cholesterol from food. Companies are adding them to foods ranging from margarine to orange juice and chocolate. 
Getting 2 grams of plant sterols or stanols a day can lower LDL / bad cholesterol by about 10%.
Soy. Eating soybeans and foods made from them can lower LDL.

Fatty fish. Eating fish two or three times a week can lower LDL by delivering omega-3 fats.

Omega 3 examples : link here
-Eskimo people eat daily about 400 g of seafood rich in Omega 3 fatty acids. Heart attack is almost unknown to them.
-Residents of Japanese fish villages eat on average 200 g fish per day and are therefore well protected against coronary-heart diseases.
- People of Siberia consume huge fish amounts daily (sturgeon, starlet), which protect them against coronary artery diseases.
Garlic and onion are irreplaceable foods to help lower LDL cholesterol and they also help raise good cholesterol level as well. (at least half of onion and  2 – 4 garlic cloves per day).
Chocolates- dark/ plain chocolate contains flavonoid, an  antioxidant, which prevents binding and depositing of erythrocytes on artery walls. 

Green tea-Antioxidants "catechins" reduce damage caused by LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol in the blood.