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11Feb/10Off

Foods that keeps you warm in winter (Part 3)

(cont'd from part 2)

After lamb and beef in part 1 and some hardcore food in part 2, it's time for some veggies. There are certainly foods that can keep our body warm for vegetarians other than meats.

6. Chestnut

Chestnut contains high sugar and lipase which are good for cold resistance. Take 15 chestnuts, peel off the shell and cook porridge with rice can help generate more heat for weaker people with "cold" and "empty" kidneys or who feel weak with the back and legs.

7. Leek

Leek contains a lot of nutrients like vitamin A, B, C and calcium, potassium and iron. It tastes bittersweet but helps supplement a weak body. Chop the leeks and cook porridge with rice can generate warmth and even helps menstruation disorders. Good for people who always feel cold with sore knees and back.

8. Spice food

Garlic, ginger, green onion, carrot, walnut, jujube and some "irritating" food such as pepper and coffee can help with cold resistances as well.

30Jan/10Off

Orange Vs. Cough

Oranges

To stop coughing is always a hassle. I recently heard a special natural healing recipe that uses orange. It doesn't matter how much vitamin C in an orange. Citrus in orange always triggers more coughs. So in traditional Chinese medical point of view, orange is always bad for coughing.  However, this easy recipe for healing cough is going the opposite - JUST use an orange, but BAKED in an oven first. Here are the steps:

The only ingredient is just a fresh orange. Peel off the skin of the top of the orange for about a size of a quarter coin. The purpose is to force the heat directly into the orange. Place the orange into the oven and bake for  10 minutes in high heat. There will be a nice, "moist" smell from the oven. After the top of the orange is shows a little burn, it's time to pull it out. It's very hot so be careful when you handle this round little thing. A baked or roasted orange is very easy to peel the skin off, and it's sweeter than a fresh orange. Season with a little salt then it's going to be even sweeter but also more effective to stop coughing. Especially if you just start coughing, usually just one baked orange will work. It doesn't matter if it's Sunkist or expensive Japanese orange, sea salt or kitchen salt, as long as they're orange and salt then this formula should work.

A baked orange is very easy and inexpensive to prepare. The nice taste should keep the kids happy as well. At least there's no side effects. It's non-drowsy and it won't ruin your appetite.

15Jan/10Off

Foods that help healing Arteriosclerosis, Atherosclerosis, Part 2

(cont'd from Part 1)

We'll continue talking about Chinese recipes for healing and prevention of arteriosclerosis and atherosclerosis. We mentioned garlic and vinegar last post. This post will be onion and tea.

Onion: To treat arteriosclerosis, we can fry 200 grams of onion with 80 grams of lean pork. Here are the procedures:

1. pour a little vegetable oil into the pan and heat it to about 80% boiled;

2. pour the lean pork and fry for a while then pour the onions to fry for a while before the pork is overly cooked;

3. seasoning with sauce and salt as you like;

4. accompany the meal with steam rice.

Tea: To treat arteriosclerosis, we mix 65 grams of banana, 30 grams of honey and 20 grams of tea leaves. Procedures are as follows:

1. Peel the banana and chop it off into little pieces;

2. Mix banana with the tea leaves into a mug of boiled hot water;

3. Add honey into the mixed tea;

4. Drink one mug per day.

14Jan/10Off

Foods that help healing Arteriosclerosis, Atherosclerosis, Part 1

Atherosclerosis is the most common type of Arteriosclerosis. That means the wall of arteries gets thicker and lose the elasticity. Cholesterol and other fatty ingredients accumulate at the wall of arteries and narrow down the blood flow. Without efficient blood flow, the issues of the arteries wall become hardened and "crispy", which is easy to break down. After middle age it's easier to get atherosclerosis.

Healing atherosclerosis or arteriosclerosis usually is to adjust the metabolism of fat and the function of Appropriate exercises, reduce the assumption of animal fat and quit smoking are important prevention of arteriosclerosis. There are many Chinese recipes for healing and prevention of arteriosclerosis and atherosclerosis. The easier ones include onions, garlic, tea and vinegar.

This post I'll just talk about garlic and vinegar first because they're pretty straight forward.

Garlic: To treat atherosclerosis, eat RAW garlic more than 6 grams per day for a long period of time. Consistency is the key.

Vinegar: To treat arteriosclerosis, immerse 150 peanuts (without shell) into 300 grams of vinegar for 7 days. Then eat 15 every morning with an empty stomach for about one and half month.

(to be cont'd)

8Sep/09Off

Chinese herbal concoction: Ng Gwun Tong

Like "Ching Po Leung", this "Ng Gwun Tong" is a general tonic. The name "Ng Gwun" means 5 gentle herbs working together as 5 gentleman. But this is also more powerful in its action, and like Korean Ginseng Chicken Soup, it's not recommended for anyone suffering from "externally-caused illness like flu. The specific ingredients comprising this soup are used to increase the vital energy (Qi) and to dredge the energy channels of the body releasing blockages; when Qi flows more vigorously and freely circulates it harmonize the entire system.

NG GWUN TONG (or Wu Jun Tang in Mandarin) 五君湯

Ingredients:

30g dangshen (黨參一兩)

30g milk vetch (黃忯一兩)

30g Chinese Yam (淮山一兩)

5g wolfberry (枸杞子二錢)

6g cordyceps or 9g China-root(冬蟲夏草二錢或伏神三錢)

(Chicken or lean pork)

Directions:

- Combine everything in a large pot, add about 8 cups of water, or enough to cover the ingredients by 2 times of the volume

- Bring to the boil, reduce heat, and simmer partially covered until barley is cooked and liquid is reduced about half, for 2-3 hours, then season to taste and serve.

- For double-boiling, the ingredients and an equal amount of water are put into a small lidded ceramic container within a larger pot. Water is added to the larger pot and brought to the boil. Ingredients in the inner container are hence cooked, but the lid retains the delicious subtle flavors otherwise lost when boiled directly. Double-boiling requires at least 3-4 hours.

(sources: Streetwise Guide: Chinese Herbal Medicine by Wong Kang Ying and Martha Dahle)

25Aug/09Off

Chinese herbal concoction: Korean Ginseng Chicken Soup

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KOREAN GINSENG CHICKEN SOUP

Korean Ginseng is one of the best herb for Chinese herbal medicine. Ironically, it's not grown originally in China. I can talk about Ginseng forever, but we'll save the detail for later. Today I just want to introduce a nourishing soup that is beneficial for older people year-round or for anyone during the winter. It's not for those who are suffering from "exopathic" diseases such as viral flu caused by external factors of the body. This soup will "nourish" the sickness itself other than the human body, which is definitely a negative effect. This soup is very easy to make, and you can find a lot of delicious recipe on the internet. Just type "Ginseng Chicken Soup Recipe" if you'd like.

Ingredients:

1 small chicken about 500g

25g Korean Ginseng

750ml water

Directions:

-  Combine all ingredients in a pot that is not made of metal. Earthenware will be ideal.

- Simmer gently or double-boil for 4 hours.

- Season with salt as desired, some spring onion and garlic will be nice for the taste too.

Here's another nice recipe with nice directions.

(sources: Streetwise Guide: Chinese Herbal Medicine by Wong Kang Ying and Martha Dahle, photos from sandylee.pixnet.net,)

18Aug/09Off

Chinese herbal concoction: Hui Sup Liu

Last post we started to talk about some herbal concoction, or herbal soup that's very important in maintaining good health for Chinese, especially Cantonese. While Ching Bo Leung is for anyone in any condition, there are other very common soups for specific needs. Like the following soup is about taking away the excess "dampness" in our body. Where does the dampness come from? One of the reasons is that when summer is hot, people like to have ice-cream or cold drinks that would affect the function of spleen and stomach. In Chinese theory, spleen governs transportation and transformation of "nutrients". When spleen is not fully functional because of the excess "coldness", the excess water in the body can't be cleared out. Besides in South China most areas are humid during summer, so our body is holds and absorbs dampness "from inside to outside."

HUI SUP LIU (or Qu Shi Liao in Mandarin) 去濕料

This soup regulates the electrolyte and water balance inside our body. This is specifically appropriate in hot humid weather. Ed俄ma, fungal infections (e.g. athlete's foot) and red, puffy eyes are symptoms associated with a "wet" condition which would benefit from this "Dampness-chasing" or "dewetting"  soup. This is also a soup with premixed packets that are easy to find in Asian grocery or supermarkets.

Ingredients: (Usually it's easier to buy the premixed packets, but if you do want to prepare, Chinese translations are here for you to print out as well.)

20g Job's tears barley (苡米七錢)

30g adzuki beans (赤小豆一兩)

30g hyacinth (lablab) beans (扁豆一兩)

30g tree cotton flowers (木棉花一兩)

1 lotus seed pod (蓮房一個)

(Winter melon) (冬瓜)

(Some Pork)

Directions:

- If using the melon, wash it first but don't peel or remove the seeds: chop coarsely, and add into the soup pot, combine everything.

- Add about 8 cups of water, or enough to cover the ingredients by 3 times of the volume

- Bring to the boil, reduce heat, and simmer partially covered until barley is cooked and liquid is reduced, for at least 1 hour, 2-3 hours if you're using meat.

- Season with salt and serve. (The melon, pork, beans and barley are edible, but not the kapok flower or lotus pod.)

(sources: Streetwise Guide: Chinese Herbal Medicine by Wong Kang Ying and Martha Dahle, photos by Christina @ forum.uhk.com,)

17Aug/09Off

Chinese herbal concoction: Ching Bo Leung

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To Chinese, especially Cantonese, soup plays a critical part in the daily meal as a source of nourishment and for the maintenance of good health. According to the season, different soups are made like cooling soup in summer and warming soup in winter. Certain individual with specific conditions from arthritis and flu to stress at work can be relieved by corresponding soups.

CHING BO LEUNG (or Qing Bu Liang in Mandarin) 清補涼

Ching Bo Leung is a soup that is a mild and general tonic, meant to be good for anyone in any condition. Many  ingredients in the soup which targets the cardiovascular system, help the body function better without stimulating any particular organ too much.

I introduce this soup for Americans also because there are premixed packets of this soup sold in Asian grocery stores and supermarkets, as well as in any Chinese medicinal herb shops. The other reason is that it's pretty easy to prepare. It can be prepared both as a savory soup using pork meat or bones in flavor, or as a sweet dessert soup like the one you can order in Vietnamese restaurant. Both will add sugar at the end. It's a drink that we can always take and help balance our Qi and Blood.

Ingredients: (Usually it's easier to buy the premixed packets, but if you do want to prepare, Chinese translations are here for you to print out as well.)

15g pearl barley (薏米半兩)

30g polygonatum (玉竹一兩)

30g lotus seeds (蓮子一兩)

30g foxnuts (茨實一兩)

15g Chinese yam (淮山五錢)

30g lily bulbs (百合一兩)

10g dried longan (optional) (元肉或龍眼肉三錢)

(Some Pork, maybe around 1lb, not too fatty; No pork needed if it's for dessert)

Directions:

- Put all the ingredients in a large pot.

- Add about 8 cups of water, or enough to cover the ingredients by 3 times of the volume, and pork meat or bones if desired.

- Make it boil, reduce heat, and simmer partially covered until barley is cooked and liquid is reduced, that takes about 1-2 hours.

- Season with salt for a savory soup, or sweeten with sugar as a dessert. Dessert can be served cold as well.

(sources: Streetwise Guide: Chinese Herbal Medicine by Wong Kang Ying and Martha Dahle, www.herbcompanion.com)