Thursday, August 10, 2006

asian soup

I've decided to veer my blog in another direction. I'd love to be able to write like Molly or take photographs like Chanelle, but truthfully, my talents lie in creative, nutritious meals for the foodie on a budget. I don't actually make all that many fancy or gourment meals - but I cook a lot and I use food that people keep in their pantries, and I think there's a definite niche of (somewhat lazy) foodies out there interested in learning more about losing a few lbs (or maintaining a healthy weight). Although I definitely indulge, and frequently, there's absolutely no reason one should have to sacrifice taste for health. So I'll be adding nutritional information to my recipes whenever I can.

(PS> I've lost almost 5 lbs this month and I feel great!)

You guys know how much I love soup. Soup is also one of the best ways to fill your tummy without using up a lot of your daily caloric intake, and one of the easiest things to throw together. I always keep Pacific broth on hand - usually chicken and onion. I devised this particular soup out of necessity- one of those "making do with what you have" sort of meals, but now it's one of my favorites.

2 C chicken broth
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small yam or sweet potato
1/2 C mushrooms (preferable shiitake)
1/2 C white onion, cut into crescents
1/2 C frozen, shelled soybeans
1 tsp sesame oil
1 green onion stalk, chopped
salt & pepper to taste
toasted sesame seeds to garnish

Wash & puncture your yam, wrap it in foil, and bake. By the way, a yam and a sweet potato are not the same vegetable - in fact, they are not even in the same family of vegetables. They come from different continents and have very different nutritional components. Generally speaking, a yam will have about 30-50% more calories than a sweet potato of comparable size, but the vitamins and minerals also far outweigh the sweet potato. Both are great sources of Vitamins A & C, beta carotene, and dietary fiber (what makes you feel full). Take out the potato when it is done but before it gets too soft. While it is cooling, sautee mushrooms and white onions in garlic and sesame oil. Cube the sweet potato (you can peel it for looks but discarding ths skin will lose about half of its beneficial fiber and many vitamins). Once the mushrooms and onions are done, add your chicken broth, sweet potato, and frozen soy beans, and heat to serving temperature. You will need to salt to taste during this step. Garnish with green onion, sesame seeds, and black pepper. Serves 1 person (2 bowls - that's just how I roll).

Calories: 450, fat: 10g (less than 2g saturated), protein: 21g, fiber: 14g. This dish contains 4 of your 5-7 FDA-recommended daily servings of vegetables.


krysten said...

hmm, i've never thought about yam as an asian flavor...interesting.

oh, and LOVE edamame beans!! steamed and salted they are SO good!

hello jamie: said...

ummm, well, ACTUALLY, Asian yams are white, like potatoes, and faintly veined with purple, but they taste pretty much the same and the orange ones look SO much prettier with the dish. I take liberties.