What would Chinese New Year (CNY) be without a large feast? Furthermore, offering food (typically a lot of it!) demonstrates the generosity of a good host. The fats and calories quickly add up, from the luscious meat dishes and shellfish at the reunion meal to bak KWA (barbecued beef), love notes, and pastries.
Indulging in holiday treats does not necessitate abandoning all healthy eating goals. Instead, you can make holiday cuisine healthy by substituting certain components with a little forethought.
Yu-Sheng (raw fish)
This traditional Chinese New Year meal is created with raw fish slivers, shredded vegetables, seasonings, and sauces. Using more fresh veggies in place of the preserved ones is a simple approach to produce healthier yu-sheng. In addition to radish, carrot, and cucumber, lettuce, purple cabbage, and thinly sliced capsicums may be used to liven up your yu-sheng.
To produce a visually appealing plate of yu-sheng, experiment with fruit like shredded guava, mango, pear, and rockmelon. Because of the inherent sweetness of the fruit, less spice and plum sauce are required.
Ensure you get your raw fish from trustworthy stores that indicate the cleanliness rating. They both sound auspicious and provide a unique edge to the dish.
Remember to leave out or lessen the quantity of oil sprinkled on top of the meal. Instead, use healthier oils like sesame oil, and you'll be throwing your way to improved health in the next year!
Pen Cai (Treasure Pot)
Everyone likes the pen Cai because it symbolizes treasure! Pen Cai is a veritable treasure trove, including products such as sea cucumber, prawns, abalone, scallops, and roast beef.
If you make pen Cai at home, line it with heaps of veggies like cabbage and radish. Not only do vegetables assist in balancing the meal, but they are also the most delicious to eat after soaking up all the nourishment from the delights served on top.
Instead of roast pig, use leaner cuts of meat, and remove all visible fat from roast duck or chicken. Limit your seafood consumption to prevent consuming too much cholesterol. Because the individual components are already flavorful, use less salt and other spice.
Spring Rolls, Wantons, Prawn Rolls
Spring rolls and wantons loaded with pork, shrimp, and veggies are deep-fried to obtain the crisp, golden exterior that gives them the appearance of gold bars and ingots. However, consuming an excessive amount of "gold bars" and "ingots" might make one wealthy...in fats! Instead, try shallow frying them in healthy oil or air-frying them. Also, increase the number of veggies in the filling to provide extra crunch and nutrition.
Ngoh Hiang (prawn rolls) is a popular Chinese New Year dish. In your kitchen, you can prepare tasty and healthful Ngoh Hiang. First, wipe the bean curd skin with a moist towel to eliminate any extra salt. Next, add a variety of veggies to the stuffing, such as onions, carrots, yams, radish, and so on, or make a vegetarian version. Also, instead of deep-frying them, consider steaming them.
Homemade CNY Goodies
With so many Chinese New Year sweets available in bakeries, shopping malls, and supermarkets, few people would want to spend time in the kitchen making that handcrafted bottle of pineapple tarts. However, there are advantages to making your treats at home; it is a fun, family-bonding activity guaranteed to properly get everyone in the holiday spirit!
Nuts, oats, and flaxseed are examples of healthy components. Choose wholemeal flour and reduce the amount of sugar in your cookies and pastries. Baking them at home also means ingesting fewer toxins because no commercial preservatives or food coloring is used. Finally, please keep them in sealed containers to prevent spoilage.
A fruit plate is another healthy prepared snack. Cut up fruit into various sizes and shapes, arrange them like a work of art on a platter, and prepare to impress your visitors.
Balancing Your CNY Meal
Preparing a nutritious, balanced dinner for Chinese New Year is no different from preparing at other times. Follow My Healthy Plate's suggestions, and you'll be fine. Cooking methods that are healthy to use include steaming, stir-frying, grilling, and boiling.
If the prospect of preparing a feast for the celebrations seems too intimidating, there is always the alternative of dining out in Singapore's food heaven. Look for food courts and restaurants members of the Healthier Dining Programme. You may order meals with fewer than 500 calories and drinks with less sugar at these restaurants. If you want to cater, look into the Health Promotion Board's recommended partners and the healthier food alternatives they provide.
You can prepare healthier dishes during the Chinese New Year with proper preparation and moderation. So let your fortunes take precedence over your waistline in the New Year.
In 2022, the holiday will begin on February 1 and last two weeks, concluding in the Lantern Festival. Every year, the calendar corresponds to an animal from the Chinese zodiac. For example, the year 2022 is the year of the tiger, an animal that represents power.
This event marks the beginning of the Chinese lunar calendar and provides an opportunity to celebrate family and achievement in the coming year. Like every other festival, Lunar New Year has a plethora of customs.
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