While we all love to eat deep fried food on occasion, eating it regularly is atrocious for our health. Most deep-fried food such as fries and chicken is too fatty, which can cause weight gain and heart problems. So if we should eat less deep fried food, how should we cook instead? Read on for some delicious and healthy suggestions.
Steaming / boiling
Firstly one of the most healthy ways to cook food and retain a lot of its nutrition content is to steam it or boil it in water. The key here is to cook vegetables until then are al dente, or still ever so slightly crispy when you bite into them. This means all their vitamins and mineral haven’t been leached out by over cooking. It also provides a pleasant texture to eat, rather than an overcooked mush, which can be very unappealing. You can add a little sea or pink Himalayan salt to the water for flavor but not too much!
Another creative way in which to cook is by using a slow cooker. You can make all sorts of delights in a slow cooker such as these we tried back in March. Chilli Con Carne, pulled porks and soups are all successful in the slow cooker. This type of cooking is also especially good for one pot meals like stews and casseroles. You just bung it all in and leave it to cook, while you go about your day.
A few words of warning, though. Firstly slow cookers should not be left unattended for extended periods of time, so they are not suitable if you are leaving the house to go to work for example. Also, I’ve found that slow cooker sauces can be a bit runny, as the lit condenses the steam and keep all the moisture in. If you like thicker sauces, add some cornflour to the recipe towards the end. Then take the lid off so some of the moisture can evaporate before you serve it.
Grilling is a very healthy and delicious way of cooking your food. You can grill vegetables, meat, and fish with baking oil and it makes a yummy, quick and easy dish. Of course grilling your food right depends on you having the best grill pan for the job. Look for one with good ridges, that isn’t too heavy and is nonstick. That means you will need to use less oil when cooking is making it super healthy.
Roasting is great ways of making flavourful meals in the oven. Roasting is usually done in fat or oil, but the health conscious have also shown that it is possible to dry roast items successfully. If you are choosing to use fat in your roasting use a saturated fat like lard, duck fat or the fat from the meat. Many people believe now that saturated fat is safer to be used at high temperatures than unsaturated fat. This is mainly due to the stability of its molecules. So try to avoid roasting in olive oil if you can.
Shallow frying is very similar to deep fat frying, although the food item doesn’t always soak up as much fat. It still should be only used sparingly, though, as too much-fried food is never a good idea. Use a good quality pan and makes sure you keep a good eye on things as hot fat can be dangerous.
Like roasting use a fat like a coconut oil or butter for shallowing frying and no the monounsaturated vegetable oil kind.
While raw food needs no cooking and only minimal preparation, they are worth considering as a healthy addition to your diet. Raw foods have the highest concentration of vitamins, nutrients and minerals. This because they are not lost in processing and cooking. Raw food always has a high water content which helps to fill you up and plenty of fiber which aids your digestive health.
It is worth bearing in mind that for some people eating large amounts of raw food can cause a bit of stomach uncomforted. So it is best only to have them in the day before 4.30pm. Also, make sure that you don’t buy cut and peeled baby carrots. They are treated in an ammonia bath before being packed to keep them fresh. This is not a great thing to be eating a lot of so buy your carrots and cut them into batons.
Baking is seen as being a healthier way of cooking than deep fat frying. Similar to roasting you can use minimal oils to bake meat, fish, and vegetables and still get a great taste.
Of course, then there is the other side of baking too, which involves flours, sugars, and fats and makes delicious sweet treats or bread. Too many of these products that contained refined flours and sugars can be bad for your health. Food experts like Hemsley and Hemsley would say that these refined ingredients are the worst thing that you can put into your body on a regular basis.
They argue for a cleaner way of eating, replacing refined white flours with pseudo cereal flours. These are much easier for the body to digest and don’t contain as much gluten. They also suggest that while sugar should be replaced with natural alternatives uch as honey or agave. They even go so far as to suggest that protein and starches should not be mixed in meals or baking. But this is a more advanced option for those that want to take clean eating to the next level.
Of course, you do need to cook the foods first before you blitz them, but liquidating food is not just for babies. Using your hand blender, you can make fantastic soups like leek and potato, stilton and broccoli and french onion. Or you can make the best dips like hummus, guacamole and pesto. You can even use the liquidating principle to make delicious desserts like frozen granita, and banana ice cream.