Thursday, January 27, 2011

Jan 26, 2011: Zucchini, margarine and pork

Pasta with zucchini capsicum sauce
Today's Food Diary
Breakfast: Rolled oats with sultanas, toasted coconut and linseed
Lunch: Pasta with zucchini capsicum sauce
Dinner: Blackbean and carrot soup with sourdough croutons
Baking/sweets: Sourdough bread

The crème fraiche based zucchini capsicum sauce was rich and creamy, nice comfort food for a beautiful tropical winter day. It is tropical conditions indoors, and arctic conditions outdoors, sunny, clear blue sky, and snow!

The soup I had for dinner was lightly spiced with Chinese 5-spice, slightly thickened with rolled oats and finished with a small dollop of crème fraiche. The blackbean and carrot combination was satisfactory, addition of crème fraiche helped it score a few additional and much needed points. The blackbean and carrot combination is nutritious, but lagging a bit on the taste factor.

Today's Favourite Photo
Source: Sparklette
Bak kwa - pork jerky. 

Today's Random Rambling: Butter or Margarine
Yesterday I bought a large slab of margarine. I only recently started using margarine for baking, not exclusively of course. I don’t mind using margarine when the fat is not expected to play a lead role, but only a supporting role. I would avoid using margarine for shortbread cookie.

The two main issues I have with margarine is flavour, and its manufactured in a chemistry lab. The margarine I bought yesterday (Milda by Unilever) has an impressive nutritional profile. 100 grams margarine has 80 grams fat, out of which saturated fats is 32 grams, omega-3 is 3 grams and omega-6 is 15 grams. So the healthy omegas account for a whopping quarter of the total fat content.

There is plenty of debate on health effects of butter and margarine. After extensive research my conclusion is that both margarine and butter have pros and cons. In moderation both are perfectly fine. Good margarine brings omegas to the  party, perhaps along with a small amount of other unwanted guests, perhaps, I am not sure. Of course not all margarine is created equal, some are perhaps best used as engine lubricant.

Today's Favourite Blog
Great pork and black eyed pea chilli recipe, great story that takes you on a journey starting from the aisles of the lecture theatre, stopping at a sushi bar on Superbowl Sunday and finally the recipe that is expected to earn the chef a Valentine’s Day dinner at a Michelin rated restaurant. Photos of the prized dish are presented during the journey to whet your appetite.

I was introduced to chilli con carne (same thing I think) by a friend in NZ and absolutely loved it. Over the years I have introduced this dish to others and received compliments, though no dinner dates at Michelin rated restaurants, or any restaurant. I just realized I have been shortchanged. My version is a lot less sophisticated, probably barely good enough for a hamburger date at McD’s.

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