Thursday, 31 October 2013

Low-Salicylate Meal (Version 1)

Dish 1 - Chicken Chop
For recipe, click on LINK

Dish 2 - Omelette with Chives
For recipe, click on LINK

Dish 3 - Stir Fried Chayote with Garlic

Serve dishes with warm rice.

Bon appétit!

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

The Rice Pot Version of Fried Omelette with Chives

Ingredients:

1. 8 medium sized eggs
2. 2 stalks of chives/spring onions (chopped into fine pieces)
3. Sea-salt
4. Sunflower oil

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1. Break all eggs into a large bowl.

2. Add the chives and a dash of sea-salt.

3. Beat the eggs until all ingredients mixed thoroughly.

4. Pour about 2 tablespoons of sunflower oil into a rice pot.

5. Allow the oil to heat up.

6. Pour the egg mixture into the pot.

7. Close the lid for approximately 10 minutes.

8. Open and check whether the eggs are cooked.

9. If not, continue until eggs are cooked thoroughly.

10. Once it is done, remove promptly.

11. Serve warm with rice.

Bon appétit!

Sunday, 27 October 2013

1 Week

Finally after a week of never-ending-migraines, sleepless nights, aches, chest-tightness due to a reaction to ginger and grapes, things have started to quiet down. It'll be low-salicylate diet for a while now.

Yesterday was my 12th anniversary and we had a quiet time at home. Quiet, but nice.

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Mini Bread Balls

Ingredients:

1. 1 tablespoon of active dried yeast
2. 300ml of lukewarm water
3. 450 of organic strong white bread flour
4. 1 teaspoon of sea-salt
5. 1 teaspoon of soft brown sugar
6. 30ml of sunflower oil
7. 1 egg (beaten - for glaze)
8. 30gm of butter (soften at room temperature)

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1. Combine the yeast and warm water in a small bowl. Mix them together and leave aside until the yeast becomes frothy.

2. Pour the flour, salt and sugar in a large mixing bowl.

3. Add the yeast, sunflower oil and butter to the flour and mix them together.

4. Knead the dough until smooth.
    * Add more flour if it is too mushy. If too dry, add some warm water.

5. Cover the mixing bowl with a clear plastic film. Leave it in a warm place to rise for 45 minutes.

6. Line two baking trays with baking paper.

7. Tear marble sized balls from the dough and roll then into round shapes.

8. Place them on the baking tray.

9. Brush the egg glaze over the mini bread balls.

10. Leave the mini bread balls aside for about 10 minutes to let them rise.

11. Preheat over to 180C.

12. Bake for about 40 minutes or until it is crunchy.

13. You can serve them warm. If you want to keep them, place them in an airtight container and keep it in the fridge. It can be kept for 2 months.

Bon appétit!


Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Disastrous Experimentations!

Those of you who have been following my blog know that I have become stronger and am able to eat food with salicylate here and there.

My latest experiments have been organic grapes and ginger.

A bit more than adventurous, I know.

But I have to keep on pushing myself to overcome this.

Sadly, not this round.

Both experiments ended in disasters.

Migraines from Hades have been my constant companion. And waking up in excruciating pain is no joke. They say absence makes the heart grow fonder. And migraines caused by food sensitivity have been a very rare affair.

Well, I am currently paying a very heavy price for experimenting.

Hubby is on emergency leave today as I am in no shape to drive. Yesterday was bad as my chest even felt tight.

It's back to 'salicylate-free' diet for God-knows-how-long!

But I'll be back for sure.

Grapes! Yum-yum. Worth every bite!

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Moist Banana Cake

Ingredients:

1. 250gm salted butter (softened at room temperature)
2. 2 tablespoons of soft, brown sugar
3. 4 eggs
4. 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
5. 4 tablespoons of milk (liquid)
6. 2 tablespoons of powdered milk (do not mix with water)
7. 6 to 7 medium sized bananas
8. 2 cups of organic plain flour
9. 1 teaspoon of baking soda
10. 1 teaspoon of baking powder

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1. Cream butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl.

2. Add in the eggs, one by one.

3. Add in the vanilla essence and milk (liquid) and mix throughly.

4. Add the mashed banana into the mixture and mix well.

5. Add the sifted flour, powdered milk, baking soda and baking powder bit by bit and mix thoroughly.

6. Preheat oven at 160C.

7. Pour the batter into a baking tin lined with baking paper.

8. Bake for 1 hour or until golden brown.

9. Allow to cool.

10. You can slice it and keep it in the fridge or the freezer (if you want to keep it longer).


Wednesday, 16 October 2013

The 2-Ingredient Cookie

Ingredients:

1. Bananas (mashed)
2. Organic rolled oats

*I am not writing down the amount as it is up to you to how many bananas and how much oats you want to use. Just bear in mind that if it is too runny, just add more oats.
*You can add chocolate chips or even nuts to your cookies.
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1. Mix the two ingredients above together.

2. Preheat oven to 180C.

3. Use a tablespoon to scoop the mixture.

4. Drop the mixture onto a baking tray which is covered with a sheet of baking paper.

5. Flatten the mixture with the back of the spoon.

6. Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes or until the oats turn to golden brown.

7. Scoop up into container once cool.

8. Keep in refrigerator (if there is any left!).

Bon appétit


Sunday, 13 October 2013

The Herd Mentality

It has been extremely windy these past few days. Perfect for kite flying.

Hubby and the little young man have been busy making kites using bamboo sticks, garbage bags, cellophane tapes and fishing string.
They made two of these. And boy, did they fly! It flew so high up in the sky! I was so afraid the they would be ripped off! The wind was so strong.
So high up in the sky! Made me wish that I too could fly so high up without a care in the world.
And then came a man who had a kite with a cartoon character. He said this to Joel, 'Why don't you ask you father to BUY you a kite next time?' in a very condescending tone which implied that Joel's father could not afford to BUY him a kite.

***hole! That was the first thing that came to my mind. Of course I held my tongue. I wanted to see what Joel would say. And his answer made me snort with glee!

'We made it. It was FUN!'

Hahahahahahahhahahahahahahahahahhahahahahhahaha!

That's my boy.

Which brings me to my next sentence. Why must things be bought? You mean making things on our own means we are poor and that we cannot afford to buy? What kind of mentality is that? So does it mean that a person who sews her own clothes is poor? A person who bakes her own goodies is poor? A person who fixes his own car is poor? This is some stupid herd mentality.

Tuesday is a public holiday. And the boys whom Joel was playing with said that they would meet at the playground for another kite flying session. Hopefully it would not rain and that the wind would still be as strong!

I think my new statement to idiots should be, 'Go fly kite!'

Nyuk nyuk nyuk!
video

The Epi That Was Two Months Later

I ordered Joel's Epi-Pen in early August. It only arrived this week. I really cannot understand how a life-saving injection can be given such low priority. Who knows in the end we would have to carry syringes and vials of epinephrine. And that would be so sad.

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Chinese Red Bean Soup

Ingredients:

1. 250gm of red bean soup (I poured boiling water over the beans and soaked it for about 1/2 hour)
    * Some people soak them overnight. Some put the soaked beans into the fridge.
2. 1/2 cup of sago
3. 1/2 cup of soft brown sugar
4. (*Optional) Pandan leaves - screwpine leaves
5. Approximately 6 liters of water

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1. Pour the 6 liters of water into a large pot. As usual, I used my multi-purpose rice cooker to boil this dessert.

2. Add the red beans and boil the beans for an hour.

3. Add the sago and soft brown sugar and boil on high heat for 1/2 hour.

4. You can add the pandan leaves at this stage. Switch to medium low for another 20 minutes.

5. You can either serve it hot or cold.

Bon appétit!


Monday, 7 October 2013

The Rice Pot Fried Rice

Ingredients:

1. 4 cups of long grain white rice
2. 200gm of minced chicken (seasoned with sea-salt)
3. 1 bulb of garlic (outer layer removed and sliced thinly)
4. 2 bunch of spiring onions (sliced into fine pieces)
5. 2 medium sized organic carrots (outer layer removed and sliced into thin strips)
6. Sunflower oil
7. Sea-salt

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1. Boil the rice and set aside to cool. (Alternatively, you could boil the rice the day before and keep it in the freezer.)

2. Switch on the rice cooker and pour in about 2 tablespoons of sunflower oil.

3. Add the garlic and fry until they are slightly browned.

4. Push the garlic aside and add the minced chicken.

5. Cook the minced chicken until about 90% cooked. Break the minced chicken into fine pieces.

6. Add the carrots and spring onions and stir fry until minced chicken is 100% cooked and vegetables have softened. You can close the lid for about 3 minutes.

7. Add the rice and some sea-salt.

8. Mix everything thoroughly.

9. Scoop onto serving plate.

Bon appétit!

We had the fried rice with fried eggs!

A Refreshing Drink

Ingredients:

1. 3 Red Delicious apples (Use Golden Delicious if you are able to find it.)
2. 2 medium sized organic carrots
3. 2 organic celery stalks

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Juice all the 3 ingredients above and enjoy this delicious drink on a hot day.

Bon appétit!

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Vitamin Sleep

Sleep today is extremely underrated. How many of us actually get adequate sleep most of the nights? Many take sleep so lightly that they joke that they will sleep when they are dead!

The 4 Stages of Sleep

Stage 1
This is where you are half-asleep. You are still somewhat aware of your surroundings. You will also have involuntary kicks and jerks.

Stage 2
This stage of sleep is slightly deeper than stage 1. About half of our sleeping hours are in this stage.

Stage 3
This stage is where your temperature core drops and melatonin production is at its strongest. It is from this stage that your body will enter the most important stages of sleep.

Stage 4
This is the REM (Rapid Eye Movement) stage where your dreams will occur. This is where the body relaxes completely. The body and mind regenerates itself at an amazing sleep. Though this is the deepest sleep of all, only a quarter of our sleep is in REM stage.

Research shows that the hours that sleep is at its best are between 10pm and 2am. And most of the time, we are awake at such hours. And sometimes until the wee hours of the morning. When we sleep, the cycle of the 4 stages will not have a chance to be completed because before it can progress to a deeper stage, it would have been time to wake up.

The Side-Effects Of Sleep Deprivation

1. Accidents

Sleep deprivation will result in sleepiness. Daytime sleepiness will result in accidents as your body is not at its full state of alertness. Drowsiness while driving is equivalent to drunk driving. The reaction time is just as slow for both.

2. Impacts Cognitive Learning

You won't be able to pay attention, stay alert, concentrate, reason, and solve problems.

3. Serious Health Problems

Sleep deprivation can cause a lot of health problems such as heart disease, heart attack, heart failure, irregular heartbeat, high blood pressure, stroke and diabetes.

4. Depression

People who have trouble sleeping or lack of sleep tend to be depressed. People with insomnia tend to be depressed. Insomnia and depression tend to feed on each other.

5. Ages Your Skin

During the stage of deep sleep, our body releases the growth hormone. This repairs our tissues.

6. It Makes You Fat

Sleep loss causes you to be 30% more likely to put on weight. The peptides in our body regulates appetite. Ghrelin stimulates hunger and leptin signals satiation to the brain and suppresses the appetite. Shortened or disrupted sleep time causes a decrease in leptin and elevates the gherkin instead.

7. Increases The Risk of Death

A lack of sleep or sleep loss causes the risk of death to be doubled. The cause of death? Cardiovascular diseases.

8. Impairs Judgement

Sleep loss impairs our judgement on events that happen in our lives. People who have sleep loss are prone to poor judgement.

9. Weakens Our Immune System

By having all the 4 stages of sleep every night, our body will be able to repair itself and keep it in optimum condition. If our body isn't being renewed or repaired, it will be susceptible to viruses and germs that it encounters everyday.

I can't have supplements or vitamins as they contain lots of chemicals and colourings and additives that I am sensitive to. Thus, sleep is my vitamin. Many times, when I felt as though I was falling sick, I would sleep. And after a good night's rest, I wake up feeling refreshed and many times, the symptoms of the flu or a bug disappears. A good night rest does wonders.

To read more on the importance of sleep, click on LINK.

Harvard's Importance of Sleep

Why Sleep Is Important

How Much Sleep Do You Need? (I found this link to be very thorough and very informative!)


Thursday, 3 October 2013

The Rice Pot Version Of Chicken Chop

Ingredients:

1. 2 chicken breasts (skin removed and cut into strips)
2. Organic all-purpose flour
3. Sea-salt
4. Sunflower oil
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1. Wash all the chicken breasts throughly under running water.

2. Pat dry with kitchen towels.

3. Coat the chicken breast strips with the flour and seas-salt.

4. Pour about 4 tablespoons of sunflower oil into the rice-pot.

5. Once the oil is hot, put the chicken strips.

6. When one side has browned, turn it over and continue to cook until the other side has browned.

7. Scoop up onto serving plate.

8. You can eat it with rice or bread or mashed potatoes.

Bon appétit!


Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Container Garden - A Winding Down Update

A junior papaya tree. Hopefully it will produce female flowers!
The okras were infested with caterpillars!
The cherry tomato plant is covered in white fungus. But yet, it is still fruiting non-stop!




A hornet

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

The Rice Pot Fried Spaghetti

Ingredients:

1. 500gm of spaghetti (Size - n5) (Boiled it until it is at a 'just soften state'. If it is too soft, the fried noodles dish will result in a horrible slush.)
2. 200gm of minced chicken (Seasoned with sea-salt)
3. 3 medium sized carrots (Outer layer removed and sliced into thin long strips)
4. 4 celery sticks (Peeled with a peeler and then chopped into small pieces)
5. 1/2 a clove of garlic (Cut into thin strips)
6. 3 shallots (Cut into thin strips)
7. Sea-salt
8. Soft brown sugar
9. Sunflower oil

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1. Switch on the rice pot and pour about 4 tablespoons of sunflower oil and add the garlic and shallots into the rice pot.

2. Stir fry until fragrant and slightly browned.

3. Add the minced chicken and stir fry until 90% cooked. Break up the minced chicken until broken into tiny pieces.

4. Add the carrots and celery.

5. Mix altogether and cook for about 5 minutes with lid closed.

6. Then add the spaghetti, a dash of soft brown sugar and sea-salt. Mix well and stir fry for about another 10 minutes.

7. Once it is done, scoop up onto serving dish.

8. Serve warm.

Bon appétit!