Chinese New Year is here! There is gonna be lots of firework in China, symbolizing the festive spirit. It is believed that Buddha invited all the forest animals to invite him on a particular day. Twelve of them appeared and Buddha named a year after each one of them. New year calls for a huge get together and Chinese food is my all time favorite. People pay a visit to each other’s house, share meals, gifts and of course happiness.
In Chinese culture, red color is considered sacred. It symbolizes fire, which means bad luck is driven away. People wear red color garments, children write short poems on red paper. Children are given luck money in red envelopes. In ancient times, the tribals lit up bamboo stalks. They believed this would drive away the evil spirits and that they can lead a peaceful life. So lets pay a visit to our friend’s place with a box of traditional almond cookies.
1 pinch salt,
100 ml corn oil,
1 beaten egg yolk,
150 gm plain flour,
100 gm caster sugar,
100 gm ground almonds,
100 gm blanched almonds,
3/4 teaspoon baking soda,
3/4 teaspoon baking powder.
1. Sieve the flour, caster sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl. Add the ground almonds to the flour and sugar mixture.
2. Slowly trickle in the corn oil to this bowl. Blend until a cohesive dough forms. Heat the oven to 180 D.C. Roll the dough into small balls, place almonds above them and press a bit as shown.
3. Place on a baking tray. Make cookies until all the dough is used up. Lightly glaze the top of the cookie balls with the beaten egg yolk.
4. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the cookies become slightly golden. Leave to cool. Enjoy the homemade cookies.
X-Men series has always been my all time favorite. Halle Berry is known for her magnificent role in X-Mean, Catwoman, Die Another Day etc. I am a huge fan of her, especially after knowing about her battle with diabetes. She says regular exercise and healthy diet are good ways of tackling with Diabetes. The first step taken by her was to consume diet that’s low in fat, not processed and low in carbohydrates as well as sugar. She cut down the desserts, processed or junk food and adopted a whole new way of eating.
Pecan Ice Cream
Halle Berry started with lots of fresh veggies, chicken, fish and pasta. She stopped intake of red meat and eliminated consuming various fruits because of the sugar content. She loves having grilled fish and garlic mashed potato plus vinegar and salt crisps. Though Halle prefers salty to sweet, butter pecan ice cream is something she loves. Christmas is here and I have something for everyone. Let’s start with Diabetic friendly Butter Pecan Ice Cream.
3/4 cup Pecans,
3 large Egg Yolks,
½ cup low-fat Milk,
2 cups low-fat Cream,
1/8 teaspoon Sea salt,
¾ cup Sugar Free Syrup,
1/3 cup Artificial Sweetener,
1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract,
1 ½ tablespoons low-fat Butter.
Chop pecans. In a skillet, melt butter over moderate heat, until foam subsides. Toast pecans in butter, stir occasionally, until golden and fragrant for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with salt to taste.
Cool pecans and chill in a plastic bag. Buttered pecans may be made 3-4 days ahead and chilled.
In a heavy saucepan, mix cream, artificial sweetener, milk, sugar free syrup, and salt. Bring just to a boil, stir occasionally.
In a bowl beat yolks until smooth. Add hot cream mixture to yolks in a slow stream, whisking, and pour into pan. Cook custard over moderately low heat, stirring constantly at 170 D. F.
Pour custard through a sieve into a clean bowl and cool. Stir in extract. Chill custard, its surface covered with plastic wrap, at least 3 hours, or until cold, and up to 1 day.
Freeze custard in an ice-cream maker. Transfer ice cream to a bowl and fold in chilled pecans. Transfer ice cream to an airtight container and put in freezer to harden. Ice cream may be made 1 week ahead. Enjoy!