Wednesday, February 02, 2011

The Japan Diet – here’s to healthy cooking

C says:

Notice that it’s healthy “cooking”, not healthy “eating”. We’re still atetoomuch, so we’re not going to forego our treasured cheeses, rillettes and charcuterie when we go out for dinner on weekends. This is just for weekday dinners after work.

I was inspired after reading The Japan Diet by Naomi Moriyama, who wrote about losing all the weight that she gained as a student in the US, simply by reverting to her mother’s Japanese home cooking. The Japanese diet is rich in fish, tofu and vegetables, all cholesterol and heart-happy ingredients, and low in dairy and red meat, all the bad/saturated fats. In addition, she also suggested serving meals in bento boxes, since the compartments make for instant portion control.

All set to start the year on a healthy note, I bought 2 bento boxes from TOTT, a couple of miso soup bowls from Daiso, and started stocking up on some essential groceries from places like Meidi-Ya, Isetan and Yamakawa Super.

I realise that if I set the rice cooker on timer mode so that it’s done when we get home, I can get dinner ready in under 15 minutes. The beauty of fish is that it takes almost no time to cook – 5 minutes tops, and simple things like a cabbage salad or cold tofu don’t need any cooking at all. The dishes that require stewing, like oyako-don (chicken and scrambled egg) or miso chicken and eggplant, I just prepare on Sunday and microwave it during the week. On non-gym days when we're home a little earlier, I may cook some soba or Jap-style pasta with some simple stir-through sauce.

I can’t believe I used to make full-on pasta dishes, which were such a palaver since I had to wait for the water to boil, then wait for it to cook, then time the sauce so that it was ready when the pasta was. And the best part is that A likes Japanese food, so I don’t even have to force him to eat healthy.

It’s only been a month, so I don’t know if we’ve lost any weight, but for health reasons if nothing else, pan fried fish and steamed rice has got to be a lot better for you than pasta with cream sauce, butter and parmesan cheese, doesn’t it?

A says:

C can cook.


Patzie said...

I should take the same approach for better eating :)

Tricia said...

So pleasing to the eyes and definitely pleasing to taste. Love it!