Friday, 26 March 2010

Totally Tofu

If you're looking to increase your protein intake, boost your heart health, and cut your food budget, try tofu! Tofu is soymilk curd, pressed and packed into a spongy food that's bursting with protein, heart-healthy fiber, and unsaturated fat, as well as vitamins and minerals. And tofu is affordable, especially compared with animal proteins like beef, chicken, and fish. Tofu is so versatile, it's a cinch to incorporate it into your diet! Substitute firm tofu for chicken, fish, or meat in your favorite stir-fry recipes; because tofu has little taste on its own but is very absorbent, it soaks up the flavors of all the foods and spices it's cooked with, leading to a delicious, savory dish! Try blending soft or silken tofu in smoothies, dressings, dips, or desserts like mousse. You can even scramble it for egg-free "scrambled eggs." You can also buy preseasoned or marinated tofu at the supermarket — it's great with rice and veggies for a balanced, healthy, and delicious meal!
If you haven't tried tofu yet, challenge yourself to switch one of your animal-protein meals in the week ahead to tofu. You might be surprised by how much you enjoy it!
A heads-up about soy products in general: Because of the oestrogenlike properties of soy, the jury is still out on whether soy products are safe for women who have a high risk of breast cancer to consume in large amounts. If you are at increased risk for breast cancer because of your personal or family history, choose soy products only in moderation, avoid soy supplements, and speak with your health care provider for specific recommendations.

The greatest tofu dish of all in my opinion is tofu in garlic sauce with Chinese vegetable on crispy noodles.  Pompey vegetarians take note:  get yourself to the Hong Kong Tea Bar on Lake Road, the cafe is basic, but the food is gastronomical, so authentic, it reminds me of being back in Sarawak!  Great value and thoroughly delicious.  This isn't on the menu, you will have to ask for it.  In fact ask for any combination of their dishes, try the ho fun noodles which are flat rice noodles if you do not fancy fried noodles.  These dishes are a little more expensive at £6.50, but you get free tea, Chinese tea or coffee and it's a good substantial amount.  Let me know how you get on.

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