Yesterday we examined the preparation of fish and seafood to prepare a diabetic romantic Thai dinner recipe.Thai fish dinners are great for diabetics because they focus on fresh healthy food simply prepared. I am going to give you two starters a soup and barbecued fish.
Thai fish broth with greens
100g brown rice noodles
500ml chicken or fish stock
1 tbsp Thai red curry paste
4 dried or fresh kaffir lime leaves
1 tbsp fish sauce
200g skinless white fish, such as sea bass or squid
100g raw king prawns
2 pak choi leaves separated
Large handful coriander leaves
Cook the noodles according to the packet instructions. Refresh in cold water and drain well. Boil the stock in a large saucepan and stir in the curry paste, lime leaves, fish sauce and 250ml cold water. Once it comes to the boil turn the heat down and simmer gently for five minutes. Cube the fish into inch cubes and add to the pan. Return to a simmer, then cook for 2 mins uncovered. Stir in the noodles, prawns and pak choi, and simmer for 2-3 mins or until the fish and prawns are just cooked. Serve in bowls scattered with the coriander.
This has to be the greatest barbecued fish on the planet, you can do it with any white fish such as schnapper, or even small sardines. In Thailand the meal is traditionally dipped in rock salt to stop it from sticking
Fish with Mango Sambal – Serve with Kale or spinach or pak choi
2 white fish steaks such as schnapper or basa.
5 Tables[pooms Thai oyster sauce,
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons of grated fresh ginger
1 fresh red chili, finely chopped (or more if you prefer it very hot)
1 ripe mango
1 Tablespoons of fish sauce
1 red chili, finely chopped or half a teaspoon of chili flakes
Juice and zest of 1/2 lime juice
2 cloves garlic, very finely chopped
a handful of cherry tomatoes finely diced
1/2 red onion finely chopped
Large handful of fresh coriander
Stir the marinade ingredients together in a bowl and pour over the fish steaks leave at room temperature for at least twenty minutes, but I prefer to do them a few hours before. Dice the mango and all the chopped sambal ingredients. if it’s not sweet enough add a pinch of stevia add more heat if you prefer.
Place the fish on the grill pan and baste with a little of the marinade.Grill the fish until it is lightly browned on the outside and the flesh turns opaque and separates easily. Try to turn the fish only once so that it does not break and then baste with the marinade. Do not overcook or the fish will dry out. Serve with the salsa and some pok choi, or steamed spinach or kale.
In general, the food from Southeast Asia is a lot cleaner than Western food, because it uses fresh natural ingredients and very little processed food. It is possible to have a diabetic romantic Thai dinner, which is incredibly healthy and taste superb. A lot of Thailand is coastal and they serve lot fresh fish, oysters and mussels and other assorted shellfish.
Over the years, I have spoken to lots of people who are put off using fish because they from underneath are all you have to do is it put in the frying pan, wok, grill or whatever when you are cooking it. In addition, any fishmonger will gut, clean, remove the head and scales, and, of course, this is much less time-consuming than doing it yourself.
If you want to do yourself here are the instructions and they are applicable for any fish. All of the innards on fish need to be removed it is quite common to grill sardines and other fish which are about 2 inches long without taking out the innards. However, I prefer to clean and gut all fish and the principle is the same. Never attempt to deal with fish with blunt knives it’s a hard job that way.
Put the fish in your hand with the fish on the side facing upwards make a slit along the inside from behind the head to the lower fin in all cases this will open the stomach cavity, remove the insides and clean out the cavity with cold running water. To determine if you need to scale it consider whether or not you are eating the skin. If you intend just to peel the skin back and remove it there is no point in going through all the work to scale it. However, I like to save my fish with a crisp skin and, therefore, scale it. To scale a fish lay flat on a chopping board and run the back of a paring knife from the tail to the head. If you want the head to stay on the fish and the usual reason for this is it identifies the fish to the diners then leave it if you want to remove it making a cup with a sharp knife just behind the head and go all the way down to the chopping board. Finally cut off the gills and trim the fins with scissors. Try out the fish with paper towels before cooking.
Muscles clams and oysters can be rinsed under running water but be careful to get into the crevices. Sometimes oysters need to be lightly scrubbed. Muscles need to be debearded, if you hold the muscle in your hand you will see that it has hairy bits sticking out in places greatly is very hard with a sharp knife and pull them out. I prefer to soak seafood in saltwater for at least five or six hours so it pumps out all the sand. Many instructions will tell you to discard any shellfish that does not open, but this is said now to be an old-fashioned idea.
It is possible to prepare crabs and lobsters at home, but many people prefer to buy ready cleaned crabmeat partially because it’s a bit of a pain to do it yourself. A lot of people also don’t like to cook live seafood because if you drop them into boiling water there is an escape of air the sound is a bit ghoulish. You can get around this by putting them in cold water and bringing to the boil because they are stunned by becoming slowly unconscious as the temperature increases. Make sure that you have salt in the water.
To Prepare a live Lobster
Either, drop the live lobster into a pot of boiling water with added salt or put it into a pot with cold water and added salt and bring to the boil. It is difficult to tell you the exact time of cooking for a lobster because it depends on which of the two methods you choose and also the size of a lobster. As a guide and average time is about 17 minutes, but the lobster is cooked when the shell turns bright red.
Turn the lobster onto its back insert the point of a very sharp paring knife halfway between the tail not severing the tail but with the handle pointing to the tail and the point to the head, first of all, sever the tail and then turn the lobster round and sever the body.
There is a black thread of intestine’s in the tail and you have to remove this. There may be a small sac of sand and grit in the head which may need removing. Everything else on the lobster is edible. To crack the claws use a small toffee hammer or a small hammer.
Do be aware before you embark on dressing a crab that there are dead men’s fingers inside which are poisonous, they are very clear but just so you know. A lot of fish markets sell crab claw meat still in the claws and these are the easiest and bet ways to utilise crabs. They are generally sold by the pound r kilo, but by weight
To prepare a live crab.
1 Live crab.
Court Boullion Recipe
1 sticks of celery
1 small fennel bulb
2 garlic heads halved
a large sprig each basil, lemon thyme, tarragon and parsley
20g rock salt or pink Himalayan Salt
1 lemon or lime, sliced
1 teaspoon of cider vinegar
2 star anise
300ml dry white wine or cider.
Start by making a flavoured stock called a court bouillon. Roughly chop the vegetables and put in a large saucepan or stockpot with the garlic, and herbs.Add the rock, sliced lemon, vinegar, star anise and wine. Add 3 litres water, bring to the boil and simmer for 30 mins. Cool and strain the liquid into a jug, discarding the vegetables.
Return the liquid to the pot and bring back to the boil. Lower in the crab and simmer for 12 mins per kg, then leave the crab to cool in the pot until cold.
To prepare the crab, lay the crab on its back and twist off the front black-tipped claws. These contain most of the white meat. Put the crab on its back with the eyes towards you and, using both hands, push up the six legs. Press your two thumbs either side of the eyes and push away the ‘purse’ (that is the central body part).
On the underside, you will see a circle of grey feathery gills which are called dead men’s fingers. It is crucial to pull these off and discard. They should not be eaten. Then, using a heavy knife, cut the round purse into four. This exposes the white meat, which can be picked out.
Pull off the knuckles from the claws and pick out the meat with a skewer or small, sharp knife. Place the large claws on a worktop and cover with a clean towel. Smash down with the back of a heavy knife or mallet until the shell cracks. As an alternative method, placing a wooden board on top of the crab, then hitting the board with a large hammer, also works well. Peel off the cracked shell to extract the meat inside. There is a thin blade bone in the centre, which should be discarded – be careful, it is sharp. You can also push the meat out using your thumbs and fingers, checking at the same time for any stray bits of shell.
Pull off the 6 legs. Extracting meat from the legs is fiddly, so unless you really need the meat, save them for a bisque.
To check that there is no shell left in the white crabmeat, sprinkle the crab over a metal tray – you will be able to hear if any shell is left in.
Using a teaspoon, scrape out the brown meat inside the main body shell, both soft and hard. Place in a sieve and rub through into a bowl using the back of a wooden spoon.
The King prawn tails can be bought fresh or frozen on their own like lobsters they should be deveined by cutting along the back and removing the black intestine. Alternatively the whole prawns can be bought and then grilled and then use them whole to the table. The smaller prawns which the Americans call shrimp are sold either fresh or frozen normally because of their size they have been cooked at sea usually there have also been beheaded and shelled.
Squid is available in various sizes, small ones are about 3 inches long was big ones are nearly a foot long. They can be bought in two ways you can purchase just the body sacks which have been cleaned and are ready for cooking or you can buy squid whole with the ink. To prepare fresh squid pull the tentacle head from the body sac which will also pull out the insides. Cut off the tentacles because they can be used but discard the head and the insides. Within the body sac there is a large piece of transparent cartilage which is known as the backbone of the squid remove it by pulling gently. This can be easier done when both are underwater. The body sac is covered by a thin membrane which is a sort of a pinky brown colour, gently insert your knife between the membrane and the sack and it should pull away easily leaving the squid flesh white.
Tomorrow we will look at Thai fish recipes, including barbecued seafood, grilled fish with garlic and herbs, steam fish with ginger and wild mushroom and many others.
There are several types of kefir – kefir grains, kefir cheese and kefir milk. Kefir becomes a fermented food which is also incidentally a
probiotic by culturing fresh milk with kefir grains. Kefir grains are life colonies of over 30 bacteria and yeast living together in harmony
in a stable symbiotic community. These grains are added to fresh milk to create kefir milk which in turn is used to make Kefir cheese. As a result of the fermentation process very little lactose remains in kefir. This makes it a great drink for those who are lactose intolerant.
Kefir grains look like cauliflower! The kefir grains themselves are actually a mixture of news lactic acid bacteria which comprise proteins lipids and sugar. The actual composition of kefir even when industrially produced is difficult to predict each batch is different due to a variety of reasons which include some of the kefir grains rise above the liquid or curds forming around the grain and the ambient temperature
Kefiran gives it a rope-like texture and the grains can be white or yellow.
It has taken the Western world considerable amount of time to accept that there are such things as good bacteria’s. Over the last 30 years there have been much more media coverage about probiotic drinks and yoghurts. So much so that these are often consumed on a daily basis. However kefir yoghurt is a superior product because it actually cultivates good bacteria in the digested gut.
The western world’s view on bacterial cultures as beneficial medicinal remedies has taken considerable time due to the lack of correct education on good and bad bacteria. However over the last few decades there has been much positive publicity for probiotic yogurts and drinks that so many of us now consume on a daily basis. As in much the same way, kefir grains offer a highly prosperous and health rich boost to your immune system.
This is a superfood for many reasons but it is better as with most healthy foods to make your own. When you buy manufactured kefir it has questionable additives and also very often added sugars.
Why is kefir good for you.
It supports a healthy immune system. Kefir has an indigestible fibre unique to itself called kefiran and this has anti-inflammatory
properties. It also supports the immune system by increasing the activity of the bodies natural killer cells which are called T-helper cells.
Equally importantly kefir helps maintain the balance of healthy bacteria in the gut desire to fight viruses bacteria and fungi. In recent
years there has been a huge increase in child allergies. No child is ever born with analogy it is always something that they acquire and
doctors think the reason this is occurring is because some children have less healthy bacteria in their gut.
It is also thought that the kefir breaks down the lactose the natural sugar in milk. This reduces symptoms of lactose intolerance which often cause bloating stomach pain.
Research in animals has shown that kefir can slow breast cancer growth but this has to be substantiated. Also some heart studies has shown
kefir may help lower unhealthy LDL cholesterol and blood pressure but other studies have shown no affect.
Kefir Milk Recipe (1 L or one 3/4 pints)
INGREDIENTS For Kefir Milk
1 tablespoon of kefir grains
1 Litre of raw unpasteurised milk or whole pasteurised non-homogenous milk at room temperature.
Sterilise a clear glass jar and add the milk cover with a clean linen tea towel store in a dark dry place for four hours. I just put mine in
the kitchen cupboard.
Strain the milk and reserve the kefir grains to use in a new batch milk. Kefir milk will keep for about five days in the fridge but to get
the best of its probiotic properties you should use fresh milk. However, if you want to get a kefir cream it does continue to ferment in the
fridge and get thicker.
How to make Kefir Milk Cheese
kefir cheese strengthens the immune system by feeding good bacteria in the gut.
Ingredients Kefir Milk Cheese
1 tablespoon of kefir grains
1 Litre or 1 3/4 pints of unpasteurised milk or whole pasteurised non-homogenised milk at room temperature. Method
Put the kefir grains in a sterilised glass jar and add the milk cover with a clean kitchen towel and store in the kitchen cupboard in the
dark between two and four days or until the liquid separates into solid curds and liquid way. When this happens the solid kefir grains
usually remain on the top layer of the curds, use a plastic spoon to remove them and make a new batch of milk or store them in the fridge.
Strain the curds and whey using a clean plastic serve into a large bowl. You only need the curds for cheese but I use the whey in cauliflower
soup or drink.You can use the curds as a soft cheese immediately I like to add soft herbs such as lemon thyme, orange time, marjoram, oregano, mint, basil and dill.
However you can make a smoother and also a denser soft cheese by wrapping the curds cheesecloth and hanging it overnight and leaving it to
drain. Generally I hang it over the tap so the excess whey drains into the sink. I also love it when you add seeds such as pumpkin, flax,
crackling feed and nuts. Sometimes I add tahini and Brazil nuts which is one of my favourite combinations. The fun of making your own cheese experimenting and bringing it to your taste. I see no reason why you could not use added dried apricots or cranberries.
Vegetarians can still use kefir milk by adding Armond, hazelnut, soya, coconut, rice or oat milk to kefir grains. One of my favourite usage
is to use it as a starter for sourdough bread. Because kefir is fermented and therefore mildly acidic it also can be used to tenderise beef.
There is something very comforting about nursery food. Egg Mayonnaise is one of those foods. It’s squidginessis deeply satisfying at all levels. It doesn’t matter what time of day you are hungry, egg mayonnaise fits the bill – back from the pub -late night munchies- perfect, peckish mid-afternoon it fits the bill. Maybe this is a British thing,The love of sandwiches, rather like the fact there are two types of beer in the world, the type the British drink at the time rest the world drink
Maybe we need more savages the rest of the world put together, it is our comfort food. It is something do so well! Crusty bread, mouthwatering strong cheddar, a tangy pickle, the perfect lunchtime fair. Lashings of salt beef on rye bread, accompanied by creamy rich German mustard or bitingly hot Polish mustard, the list goes on of great British sandwiches!
It’s no secret that the British invented afternoon tea, in fact that another perfect time to eat Diabetic Egg Mayonnaise sandwiches.This recipe replaces the very heavy calorific fatty mayonnaise with the healthier avocado fat option!
This option makes a diabetic egg mayonnaise sandwich healthier it doesn’t take any of the richness and sublime taste away.It still has the same wonderful chunky texture. An added bonus is it also has a richer greener more vibrant color than the rather insipid looking, but great tasting traditional egg mayonnaise.Paprika, dill or tarragon complement eggs perfectly, I prefer to use one of the three, but there’s nothing stopping you trying them all.
Diabetic Egg Mayonnaise
4 large hard boiled eggs, cooled and peeled
1/2 avocado (about 100 grams)
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 of a small lime or lemon, juiced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Toppings for Diabetic Egg Mayonnaise
Sprinkle of fresh parsley
Smoked or plain paprika
Extra Himalayan salt and lashing of black pepper
Method for Diabetic Egg Mayonnaise
Add hard boiled eggs, avocado, Dijon mustard, lime/lemon juice, and salt and pepper to a small bowl and mash with the back of a fork until fully combined.
If desired, serve on a crispbread with tomato, rocket or watercress, a sprinkle of fresh herbs or dried spices, and a pinch of coarse Himalayan salt.
If you like the idea of this for breakfast but can’t face the idea of having it cold, separate the egg and drop the yoke in half of an avocado, for the egg white around yoke cover with freshly ground black pepper and pop it in the until the edges set about six minutes.
Is a great recipe 300 g of fresh or frozen blueberries method put all ingredients in a blender and blend300 g of fresh or frozen blueberriesDiabetic ice creams are not the normal vocabulary for diabetics! The best diabetic ice cream ever is a big claim, but one which is entirely justifiable. Home-made ice cream is so much nicer than shop bought ice cream. When you buy ice cream you have no idea how many chemicals, e numbers, additives and any other nasties are, plus added sugar. The beauty about this diabetic ice cream is the fact you don’t need any special equipment to make it, it is just five simple everyday ingredients. The end result is a delicious tasting and nutrient dense ice cream perfect for a hot summers day. If you can’t buy ice cream moulds then get some plastic cups and freeze them, once they are frozen you can simply run under a cold tap for a minute to release the ice cream on a plate and eat with a spoon.It is a great recipe to make with children because it is so simple and quite honestly it takes longer to eat it and it does to make it.
The star ingredient has got to be the coconut milk. Many of you will have heard that can contain saturated fat and in fact this is true. But saying all saturated fats are bad for you is a bit like saying all cars are black! The fats contained in coconut are medium chain triglycerides these are broken down very quickly by the enzymes secreted by the lining of the blood vessels and this makes it a very efficient energy source because it’s an efficient energy source is easy to use. This means that it’s unlikely to be stored by the body or cause any problems in the cardiovascular system.
Coconut is neither a fruit nor a not, it is a one seeded drupe. Creamed coconut or coconut milk is manufactured in a similar way to other dairy products. The coconut flesh which is white is first created and then soaked in hot water. The coconut cream rises to the top and can be skimmed off the remaining liquid is squeezed through cheesecloth to extract a white liquid that is coconut milk. In most countries coconut milk can be bought in tins or cans.
Coconuts are highly nutritious and rich in fiber, vitamins C, E, B1, B3, B5 and B6 and minerals including iron, selenium, sodium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous. Unlike cow’s milk, coconut milk is lactose free so can be used as a milk substitute by those with lactose intolerance. It is a popular choice with vegans and makes a great base for smoothies, milkshakes or as a dairy alternative in baking.
Coconuts contain significant amounts of fat, but unlike other nuts, they provide fat that is mostly in the form of medium chain saturated fatty acids (MCFAs) in particular, one called lauric acid. Lauric acid is converted in the body into a highly beneficial compound called monolaurin, an antiviral and antibacterial that destroys a wide variety of disease causing organisms. It is therefore now thought that consumption of coconut milk may help protect the body from infections and viruses.
MCFAs are rapidly metabolized into energy in the liver. It is thought that unlike other saturated fats, MCFAs are used up more quickly by the body and are less likely to be stored as fat. This does not exempt them from contributing to heart disease – they are still a fat – but they have a different effect than saturated fats. Because of coconut milk’s high content of saturated fatty acids, it is still seen as a food that should be consumed in moderation.
If you are able to get fresh coconut milk be aware that it goes bad very quickly and should be used the same day as pressing. The canned variety is a useful store cupboard ingredient and can be stored at room temperature for a long time. Be careful to check the use by dates and look out for damage or dents in the cans. Once opened, transfer the contents to a resealable container and refrigerate. Use within a few days. The high oil content makes coconut quickly turn rancid if not stored under proper conditions.
How to make your own coconut milk
Use unsweetened coconut flakes And add very hot but not boiling water. Leave to stand for 10 minutes then run through a sieve. It can be stored in the fridge for three or four days.
Coconut and Blueberry Lolly
300 g of fresh or frozen blueberries
400 mL of coconut milk
150 g of thick Greek yoghurt
1 tablespoon of runny honey
juice of half a lime.
How to Make Coconut and Blueberry Ice Cream
Put all the ingredients in a blender and blend until fairly smooth. Pour into ice cream moulds or plastic cups and freeze.