Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Healthy and gluten free bean curd skin with tomato pasta sauce | 健康又美味的无麸质干豆腐皮配意大利番茄酱

Bean curd skin is also known as tofu skin, is a byproduct of soy milk. It is similar to Yuba (
腐竹皮) but slightly thicker and  rough texture. One thing I like about bean curd skin is its sweet flavor, it tastes soft of eggy to me. To use, just separate the sheets and cut them into thin strips like Chinese noodles.  
The main criticism of bean curd skin is that it will not absorb much liquid sauce when cooked. So, to get the pasta sauce to stick to the bean curd skin, you can make the sauce thicker (simmer it for a while if it is thin) and toss the bean curd skin strips in the sauce.   

Below is a comparison of Nutrition Facts labels of Spaghetti (top), Bean curd skin (bottom left) and Rotini (bottom right). You can see that 100g of bean curd skin provides 270kcal, about 25% fewer calories than spaghetti (363 Kcal, 1 KJ = 0.2388 Kcal) and Rotini (359 Kcal). Bean curd skin is also a great source of protein. It provides 25.8g of protein, at least double the amount of protein in Spaghetti (12g) and Rotini (13.5g). 

1 package of bean curd skin (cut into strips) 
1 bottle Prego Italian sauce traditional (14 oz)
2 cloves garlic (chopped)
2 slides ginger (chopped)
1 onion (chopped)
1/2 red bell pepper (chopped)
1/2 cup water
Few grinds of black pepper and a pinch of salt.

  1. Heat some vegetable oil in a pan over medium-high heat. 
  2. Cook garlic and ginger in oil for 1 minute. 
  3. Stir in onion and bell pepper, and cook until soft. 
  4. Mix in Prego Italian sauce and water, and then cook for another 2 minutes, stirring frequently.  
  5. Add bean curd skin and cook for another 2 minutes. 
  6. Season with salt and black pepper.  
  7. Garnish with fresh cilantro and cherry tomatoes
  8. Serve warm and enjoy!

For those who are serious about gluten free diet, this Prego Italian sauce is gluten free. It is made by Campbell's soup company, they publish a list of gluten-free products on their website at this link. 

意大利面你吃得多,有没有试过用干豆腐皮搭配意大利番茄酱?除了自己本身很爱吃番茄意大利面,其实我做这道菜肴其中一个想法就是帮助一些有麸质不耐症 (Gluten intolerance) 的朋友,因为很多粥米面饭他们都不能吃,所以能够帮助他们设计一些饮食、自己也蛮开心的。



1. 一包干豆腐皮
2. 一小瓶 Prego 意大利番茄酱
3. 一些蒜头、姜和洋葱切碎
4. 半个红灯笼辣椒切碎
5. 半杯水
6. 黑胡椒和盐少许做调味

1. 先放少许食油、蒜头、姜爆香
2. 加入洋葱和红灯笼辣椒炒1分钟变
3. 加入意大利番茄酱和半杯水转小火,继续烹调2分钟。
4. 加入切好的干豆腐面条,继续烹调2分钟。
5. 加入少许黑胡椒和盐做调味,拌匀。
6. 起锅后放入香菜和小番茄即可。 

 1. How to tell if you are gluten intolerant by Dr. Mark Hymen: Click here
2. Comparison of food calories by Two Foods - Instant Food comparison: Click here

Monday, 26 November 2012

Wild Mushroom

Last week, after a good rain storm, some wild mushroom sprouted near my apartment. With a little research, they look like the prince mushrooms (Agaricus Augustus). When I touched the cap, I found it soft and scaly. The gills look white and yellowish colour. They grow in moist soil on side of grass field. 


The above mushroom might not be edible. Don't eat any mushroom you are not 100% certain of it's identification. Take care!  

Mushroom discussion: Identifying mushroom
References: The mushroom hunter

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Chinese dumplings with tomatoes pasta sauce,avocado dip & homemade hummus dip

Three quick and easy healthy recipes:

1) Chinese dumplings with tomatoes pasta sauce

Ingredients: 8 Chinese dumplings (defrosted), 1 small Prego tomatoes, basil & garlic sauce, 2 cloves garlic (chopped), 1 onion (chopped), 1/2 bell pepper (chopped), few grinds of black pepper and a pinch of salt. 

Preparation: Heat some vegetable oil in a pan over medium-high heat. cook garlic in oil for 1 minute. Stir in onion and bell pepper, and cook until soft. Mix in Prego tomatoes, basil & garlic sauce and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add dumplings and cook for another 2 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper. Garnish with fresh cilantro and serve warm.

2) Easy avocado dip  (Guacamole) 

Ingredient : 2 ripe avocados, 1  tomatoes (chopped), fresh cilantro (chopped), half lemon juice, few grinds of black pepper and a pinch of salt.   

Preparation: Peel and mash avocados in a serving bowl, stir in chopped tomatoes, fresh cilantro, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Chill for half and hour to blend flavors. Serve with tortilla chips, bell peppers, cherry tomatoes and fruits  

3) Homemade hummus dip

Ingredient : 2  cloves garlic (chopped), 1 1/2 cup cooked chickpeas, 2 tablespoons tahini (sesame paste), half lemon juice, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1/2 teaspoon salt. 

Preparation: Put the above ingredients in a food processor and blend until creamy and smooth. Transfer to a bowl, cover and chill for 1 hour. Serve with fresh tortilla chips and cherry tomatoes and fresh cut fruits    

Ginger fruit smoothie | 姜与蔬果新搭配

Ginger has a long tradition of being very effective in alleviating symptoms of stomach pain, nausea and diarrhoea. It is not only superior in flavor but contains higher levels of gingerol; a powerful antioxidant compound which acts as an anti-inflammatory in the body. If you are wondering how to use ginger, it's very easy to use for cooking. Since it is both fibrous and rich in juice and oils, it is suitable for making juice and ginger fruit smoothie. 


 1 cold kiwi fruit
3 cold apples 
4 slices ginger
6 cold cherry tomatoes 
1 teaspoons raisins
1 teaspoons granular lecithin
splash of water

1. Flavour: Sweet apple kiwi with a little spicy kick. 
2. Texture : Thick and a bit creamy.
3. Nutrition Value: Very high antioxidant compounds. Good for the stomach and digestive system.
4. Average Rating:

“姜是吃的萬能藥” 有提到70%的汉方制剂都含有姜, 在科學的方式解析姜具有健胃、抗潰瘍、鎮吐、促進腸的蠕動運動、胃腸內的殺菌、強心、鎮咳、去痰、鎮痛、鎮靜、解毒、抗菌、改善低血壓 、降血壓及多种作用。


姜。。。。。。。。。3 ~ 4小片
冷冻奇異果 (Kiwi) 。。1粒
冷冻小番茄。。。。。 6粒
颗粒卵磷脂/大豆卵磷脂。。。。。1茶匙 (Granular Lechitin)
水。。。。。。。。。。少许 (帮助搅碎Blending)

做法:把以上的材料放入混合器 (Blender) 搅碎后就可以喝了!


1) 这沙冰会辣吗?
答: 味道会有点姜辣味,不过喝了过后觉得蛮舒服、暖胃的。若怕辣,可以把姜片减少于1-2片。

2) 如果不放葡萄干和颗粒卵磷脂/大豆卵磷脂可以吗?
 答: 不放葡萄干和颗粒卵磷脂也可以,一般上如果苹果不是很甜,我都会加少许葡萄干增添一些甜味。 而不加颗粒卵磷脂也不会影响沙冰的整体味道。

3) Granular lecithin 有什么作用吗??去哪里买得到?
答: 颗粒卵磷脂 或 大豆卵磷脂 (Granular lecithin or lecithin) 是素食三宝其中一宝。常食用卵磷脂可以帮助身体细胞生长,特别对指甲、和头发健康成长很有帮助!也有研究显示常吃卵磷脂可以促进头脑发育,和预防肝脏和心 脏疾病。 这是其中一个参考: http://www.livestrong.com/article/273790-what-are-the-benefits-of-soy-lecithin-granules/
可以在很多健康食品店或有机食品店都能买到Granular lecithin。 

References :
1) WHfoods: Ginger
2) 姜是吃的萬能藥

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Kenai Fjords National Park

This was taken during a dark and rainy day in seaward port middle of spring. Abel, CY and I were sitting having dinner in a restaurant while enjoying the view of the bay. 


The next morning we joined a wildlife and whale watching tour in Seaward port. The cruise departed Seward and spent the day traveling through Resurrection Bay and Kenai Fjords National Park. 

The scenery was spectacular, we spent a lot of time looking for the humpback whales and killer whale, without disappointment to our tour, we saw a group of whales breaching close to the boat and also a pod of killer whales traveling on a far distance.


Some Steller Sea lions haul out on rocky island at the Aialik Bays, and thousands of seabirds inhabit the rocky cliffs.

Last but not least, I have put together a video slideshow of the rest of the photos I'd taken from the wildlife tour. Enjoy watching!

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Jambu air tree

Jambu Air  (Eugenia aquea) is from a species of brush cherry tree. Its common names include water guava, water cherry and water apple. In Chinese, it is known as Lián Wù  莲雾  or Shuǐ Wēnɡ 水蓊. Jambu air has a very mild and slightly sweet taste similar to apples, and a crisp watery texture like the watermelon. The Jambu Air tree is also planted for its wood, the wood is hard and can be used to make tools and building materials. It is grown in gardens and parks as an ornamental plant.

Below pictures are taken from a Jambu Air tree near my workplace:    

~ two weeks ago (27 Oct 2012):

Close-up of bunch of young Jambu Air on tree

"Polka dot Leafyoung leaf eaten by insects


~ Last week 

The fruits have started to ripen up


This morning

When fully ripe the fruits turn into pink colour 


Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Delicious green smoothie | 超级绿色沙冰

Green smoothie is very nutritious. With a ratio of fruits to lefty green vegetables as 60: 40, the sweet fruit takes away the bitter taste of greens. Green smoothie get their vibrant colour from chlorophyll, a nutrient-rich pigment found in all leafy vegetables such as wheatgrass, bak choy, spirulina, spinach, that cleans the body of harmful toxins, enhances the immune system, purifies the blood and rejuvenates the body.  According to Dr. Ann. Wigmore, to consume chlorophyll is like receiving a healthy blood transfusion.


1 banana
1 cold kiwi fruit
1 cold dragon fruit
6 spirulina tablets 
2 bunches organic bak choy 
 Handful of organic wheatgrass
 1/2 cup frozen organic blueberries
1 teaspoons granular lecithin
splash of water

1. Flavour:  Sweet and flavorful (not bitter at all).
2. Texture : Smooth and creamy.
3. Nutrition Value: Very high chlorophyll, vitamins and minerals. Excellent for body detox and rejuvenation.
4. Average Rating:

超级绿色Smoothie 的营养非常丰富,含有多种活性营养素和70多种矿物质,如钾、钠、钙、镁、铁、等等。绿色Smoothie 的颜色来自蔬菜和绿藻中的叶绿素,可以帮助制造新鲜血液,排除血液中的废物,美白皮肤,提高免疫力及预防直肠癌和多种慢性病

以下材料搭配,大概 ~ 60% 水果 :40% 蔬菜比率, 水果的香甜会盖住蔬菜的苦涩味,所以味道容易入口,最适合不爱吃蔬菜的小朋友们。

有机小白菜 。。。。。1 把
有机小麦草。。。。 。1把
绿藻。。。。。。。 。6 粒
香蕉 。。。。。。。1条
冷冻奇異果 (Kiwi) 。。1粒
冷冻龙珠果。。。。。 1粒
冷冻蓝莓。。。。。。 半杯
颗粒卵磷脂/大豆卵磷脂。。。。。1茶匙 (Granular Lechitin)
水。。。。。。。。。。少许 (帮助搅碎Blending)

做法简单, 只有把以上的材料放入混合器 (Blender) 搅碎后就可以喝了!

1) Wikipedia: Health shake
2) Boutenko, Victoria "Ode to a Green Smoothie", first published 2005 newsletter, RawFamily.com. Reprinted in Kyssa, Natasha (2009). The SimplyRaw Living Foods Detox Manual, beginning p.29. ISBN 1-55152-250-0.