Chinese Food: A Healthy Make-Over

Featured Article,Healthy,Recipes
August 24, 2011

Three popular Chinese dishes get a little "enLIGHTenment" with a few healthy twists.

Enlightened Fried Rice
Mark Boughton
http://pgoarelish2.files.wordpress.com/2011/01/shrimp-fried-rice-healthy-chinese-dinner-relish.jpg

Kung “Pao,” indeed. A report from the U.S. Center for Science in the Public Interest served up the one-two (fat/sodium) punch that restaurant Chinese food is a nutritional disaster. The news made headlines, but it wasn’t exactly a surprise. Most of us have known for years that a dish of deep-fried Kung Pao Chicken is no more virtuous than a fistful of French fries.

But when I studied the cold, hard, artery-clogging facts, and learned that an order of Lemon Chicken has the fat and calorie content of three McDonald’s Crispy Chicken Sandwiches, and that a serving of Orange Beef delivers a whopping 1,500 calories, 11g saturated fat, and 3,100mg of sodium, I knew I had to take matters into my own kitchen.

So I did, focusing on the naturally healthful essence of true Chinese cooking—heavy on the vegetables and light on the protein, low in animal fats, sauced with a gentle hand, and nearly always accompanied by steamed rice.

Properly prepared authentic Chinese food is actually one of the world’s most heart-healthy cuisines. And you can prepare it in the blink of a stir-fry. Here are a few tips:

• Forget the wok. A heavy 12-inch skillet delivers the best results with a minimum of oil.

• Accentuate the positive. Turn Beef with Broccoli into Broccoli with Beef.

• Serve rice alongside rather than beneath the main dish, and opt for brown rice over white.

• For the ultimate “fake-out,” serve your healthful dishes in Chinese take-out containers, pass the chopsticks, and don’t forget the fortune cookies. The message? “You will enjoy a long healthy life, and Chinese food too.”
 
—By Laraine Perri
 

Enlightened Fried Rice

Enlightened Fried Rice

Leftover brown basmati rice makes this Chinese dish a snap.

Beef-And-Broccoli-Spicy-Chinese-Relish

Spicy Broccoli with Beef

A Chinese restaurant stir-fry is easy to make at home.

Cashew-Chicken-Healthy-Chinese-Relish

Cashew Chicken

A sauce of sherry, balsamic vinegar and soy sauce coats the chicken in this classic Chinese dish.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 189 other followers