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Wednesday, September 8, 2010
There was an article published in the local news paper, The Straits Times last week which caught my attention and made me a little pensive. The article reported that 1/3 of the elderly population above 50 years old in Singapore are at risk of malnutrition. (that works out to be an absolute number of 300,000!) Some of these are from the lower income bracket who live alone while others are from normal, well to do background.
In today's affluent Singapore, it is hard to believe that there are people who are suffering from malnutrition because they cannot afford to eat well. I do not doubt that there will always be a small slice of the population who are less fortunate but this figure could never be 300,000 (of the above 50 year old bracket). I am strangely disturbed because I fear that I, myself would be part of that group in the years to come - primarily because I don't think I am,like most of these old folks, eating right.
I have seen elderly relatives within my family who are attempting to drastically change their eating habits because of health issues that have surfaced. Some are eating much less, eshewing carbs, oil and salt. I used to look forward to the delicious food cooked by my aunt but for almost 10 years now, her cooking has become bland and tastes like saw dust. She has practically cut off all salt, sugar and oil and is quick to buy into any health tip she reads and hears over the media. Sometimes, I think it is precisely these extreme paranoia that creates malnutrition.
I love my food and I am generally a small eater. However there are a few bad habits which I have not been able to kick - I don't like my greens and I don't drink enough water. These coupled wth my intent to stay slim, have me skipping meals and abstaining carbs. The article was a small wake up call for me (at least for as long as it stays fresh in my mind) - I have to be disciplined and eat more vegetables.
I am not very creative when it comes to cooking vegetables. When I am at a lost, the 2 vegetables that I usually reach for are the Spinach or the Broccoli. This time, I decided to go with the trusted Broccoli because I have a can of crab meat in my pantry which would expire in another 3 months. I know broccoli may not be well liked by most people, but it is high in nutritional value. Kids are usually made to eat these by masking it with cheese. I like to 'mask' it with a good gravy.
I had steamed to cook the broccoli florets for 3 mins and drenched it with a gravy prepared separately. The crab meat and the flavourful gravy made the broccoli tasty... tasty enough to have me finish the full portion of vegetables. Today's quota for vegetables... Done! Thump thump!
Canned Crab Meat 45g
Ginger 2 slices
Spring Onion 3-4 pieces (3-4 cm in length)
spring Onion, ginger 3-4 pieces (3-4cm in length), 3 slices
Chicken consomme 200g
Salt 1/3 tsp
Wine 1/2 tbsp
Sesame oil a little
corn flour 2 tsp
water 4 tsp
Egg White 1
1. Cut broccoli into florets and steam over boiling water for 3 mins.
2. Season steamed florets with a little salt and sesame oil
3. In a hot wok, heat some oil and fry ginger and spring onion till fragrant. Add crab meat and season with a little salt and pepper. Dish out and set aside.
4. Heat up the wok again, add some oil and fry ginger and spring onion until fragrant. Remove ginger and spring onion from the wok and add the chicken consomme and heat until boiling. Add all seasonings. Mix the corn flour with water. Add slowly into the boiling liquid until the desired thickness is acheived.
5. Using a hand whisk, whisk in egg white. Scoop gravy over the broccoli and crabmeat.