Labors of love for food.Lens Artists Photo Challenge: A labor of love
Tag Archives: food
Vegetarian Spring Rolls
I had a quite filling yet inexpensive lunch today — two pieces of vegetarian spring rolls.
Ordering these spring rolls before grocery-shopping at Walmart-SM Mall has been a habit of mine for years now (Walmart-SM is on the island, so I only go there once or twice a month.) A friend of mine introduced the restaurant to me at least 10 years ago, and I’ve been going to that restaurant for their spring rolls ever since.
These spring rolls have dried tofu, cabbage, celery, cilantro, carrot and peanut sauce.
A very simple yet filling and healthy meal.
There are a number of spring roll recipes online. You can try making your own.
Apart from finding time to exercise, it isn’t very hard to lose weight. Stick to a healthy diet.
Dumplings for vegetarians
I am not a vegetarian, but I try to eat more vegetables than meat. Yesterday I had my first (and last) meat dish for the week, so I wasn’t so keen on having dumplings for supper.
But my husband wanted to have dumplings in a Dongbei 东北 (northeastern) restaurant. Most dumplings have meat in them. Thankfully the restaurant serves leek and egg dumplings (韭菜鸡蛋水饺.)
Last week I did my dance workout one hour every single day and also did planking and lifting weights and really watched my diet.
I lost 1 kilogram.
Though I tend to eat more during weekends when my husband and I eat together, I know if I really want to, I can lose one kilogram again this week with exercise and a vegetarian diet.
Optimism and discipline. 💪
In search of Gong Bao Ji Ding
In my first few years in China, I often ordered Gong Bao Ji Ding (宫保鸡丁 or Kung Pao Chicken) and Mapo Doufu (麻婆豆腐）whenever we went out to eat simply because the Chinese restaurants my friends and I often went to were Sichuan restaurants.
But as years passed and my friends left in China, my husband and I seldom go out to eat, and when we do we don’t usually eat Sichuan food. So I had not eaten Gong Bao Ji Ding in at least 4 years even though I live in China! Until today.
We purposely went out to find a restaurant that serves Gong Bao Ji Ding because the restaurant we used to go to no longer serves my favorite dish! We walked about 3 km until we found one that serves it. Though I was a little disappointed it didn’t taste the same as I remembered it, I was still glad I finally got to eat it again!
Another dish I recalled liking then and ordered today was Gan Bian Si Ji Dou （干煸四季豆).
This one tasted the same though.
All in all we had a beautiful morning walk that culminated in a good lunch that brought back memories of good food and fun company.
Have a wonderful weekend! 💕
Bitter (Gourd) Memory
This is what I had for lunch today: bitter gourd with egg, sprinkled with black pepper and cumin.
I loved it. But I haven’t always loved it.
When I was a child, my mother often prepared a bitter gourd salad which I could not even chew because of its bitterness. In high school, our Practical Arts teacher told us this vegetable (or vegetable-fruit) was a blood purifier. That really stuck with me. Several times I tried to like this vegetable, but it wasn’t until only a couple of years ago that I could finally appreciate the bitterness of the bitter gourd.
And am I thankful that I like it now!
It’s supposedly packed with nutrients and can help reduce blood sugar and cholesterol levels. And as it is rich in fiber and low in calories, it’s great for weight loss as well.
Did I enjoy my lunch? I sure did! (I learned from my Korean friend that this is not cheap in South Korea. However, there’s an abundance of bitter gourd in southern China where I am now and in my home country as well. So, lucky me!)
Have a healthy week!
Diet and workout update
Yesterday I decided not to use oil when cooking, so instead of having stir-fried vegetables for lunch, I am opting for steamed ones. I just added fresh tomatoes and onions to the steamed spinach and a bit of salt, pepper and soy sauce, and I had a really tasty lunch.
I’ve been serious about losing weight for almost 2 months now, and though I find it a bit slow I’ve lost 3 kg and my waistline is down by 2 inches! Yay for me!
A week ago, I was only doing 20-30-minute dance workouts confident that I would lose weight because I am on a 1000-calorie diet. But I’ve read several articles that said if you want to be healthy, a 15-20-minute exercise daily is good enough. However if you want to lose weight, you need at least an hour of exercise! And I’ve found out how true that is. Eating healthy and an hour of exercise daily for a week can surely show you positive results.
As for planking, I can hold a plank for a minute but after reading an article about waiting until you have really trimmed down before doing strengthening exercises, I just do it once a day.
It’s tough, but I am hopeful I can reach my goal. 😉 I’m sure you can, too!
Have a good week!
A healthy and enjoyable lunch
I went to the island today for some errands and stopped by to see a friend. She was glad to hear I’ve been trying to eat healthy food, and we agreed to have a healthy lunch together. I told her I was OK with whatever she ordered, and I was not disappointed. Two of the dishes she ordered were so good, I just had to take a picture of them: the spinach and dried scallop soup and stir-fried mushrooms.
Lunch with my friend is always enjoyable as I enjoy listening to her talk just about everything. She is several years oder than I am, and I always feel I learn something new every time I have lunch with her as she can explain so many things to me about economics and politics.
I had a wonderful time, and I was happy I was able to enjoy lunch without ruining my diet!
Have a lovely Monday!💕
Got a table by the window, but … buildings
On fake and real hunger
Yesterday I had a pretty good lunch and snacked on a banana after a couple of hours. Around 5 o’clock as I was preparing to go food shopping, I felt hungry. Then I thought, “How could I be hungry again?” But I decided I was not going to eat anything until after I got back home. And that’s exactly what I did and actually forgot the feeling of hunger while shopping.
From what I’ve read, there is actually such a thing as “fake hunger. ” We may feel “hungry” even just an hour after lunch, but this may be because that cheesecake just looks so tempting (I swear I can hear cheesecake calling out to me every time I see one!) Or perhaps we are stressed and need to comfort ourselves with food that we like; or we may be surrounded by people we like and to spend more time with them, we order more food.
Next time you feel hungry, ask yourself if it’s real or you are just dealing with something that can be solved not by increasing your calorie intake, but by doing something healthier — drinking more water, doing exercise, talking with people, etc.
Webmd has a good article on checking whether you are truly hungry or not.
Have a lovely weekend! 💕
Another week of healthy eating
Normally I try not to talk about my little achievements if I have not reached my ultimate goal yet. I have this superstition that it will be jinxed if I talk about it. But last week I wrote about my diet, and the weekend passed without me ruining it. So here I am writing something more about my diet.
Some vegetables I used to ignore have become interesting in my eyes, simply because I am looking for variety. Before I came to China, I seldom ate vegetables. This is true of most Filipinos. We love our lechon and meat too much. So one thing I’m truly happy about coming to China is learning to love and cook veggies. And fungi!
I had never eaten mushrooms before I came to China, but these days one of my favorite ingredients for cooking is the king oyster mushroom.
I use this kind of mushroom to replace meat, and I just love it! I cooked it with celery the other day, and today with eggplant.
King oyster mushrooms are abundant in China, but I have never seen this kind in my home city in the Philippines. I will surely miss this when I go home for good!
This evening I tried the cucumber, celery and apple smoothie after coming across this recipe. It’s not my favorite smoothie, but it’s good enough for variety.
I hope I can stick to my healthy diet (and silly dancing) so I’ll be strong and healthy for a busy but fun summer with my son!
Have a healthy, happy Monday!
Buffet at North Bay in Jimei
If you ever find yourself hungry in Jimei, try the buffet at Cafe Realm at North Bay Hotel. (No, this is not a paid ad. I wish it were. Maybe I should ask? Lol.)
This weekend I was fortunate to have had Saturday lunch and Sunday dinner at North Bay. It made me smile when the guy who prepares the sashimi recognized me, said “Hello!” and spoke to me in English. He knows I love salmon!
The buffet includes a soup selection, and seafoods, barbecue/steak, rice and pasta, fruits, Chinese, Japanese and western dishes, ice cream (local and Haagen Dazs) and what I love best — the pastry selection! All you can eat cheesecake and many other sinfully delicious cakes!
They also offer a variety of fruit drinks, coffee, milk, soda, Budweiser. In the evening they serve wine as well.
North Bay Hotel, Jimei, Xiamen
Lunch: 11:30 – 2:00 P.M.
Dinner: 5:30 – 9:00 P.M.
Price: 26-28 USD
Now, I hope North Bay sees this and rewards me! 😉
Have a lovely week! 💕
Week 7 Prompt: Group
Hubby and I went out for an early morning walk and then went to the supermarket. It was quiet and there were varieties of fresh shellfish. Then I thought, these could be good subjects for a photograph!
And here they are!