Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Common Errors Concerning Food

Traditional Filipino Food/Dishes
Traditional Filipino Dishes

One of the most frequent errors concerning food is noticed at parties and get-togethers. Every hostess wants to be a good cook, and she outdoes herself in preparing food. The result? Too much food. Very frequently, the food leans heavily toward the protein and carbohydrate side: Gluten fritada, pancit, adobo, lumpia, rice, puto, conchinta, bibingka, and suman. What do you notice about this? That’s right. Very little, if any, at all of vegetables.

Listed below are some of the more common errors. Also given are ways to avoid them.

  • Many people cook vegetables until they are overdone. When a vegetable is overdone, it gets soggy, and out-of-shape and loses its color. It also loses the vitamins present in it. Why don’t we try following the Japanese practice of cooking vegetables in just a little water, and taking them out while they are still crisp. Try drinking the water the vegetables were cooked in. It’s delicious and what is more, it contains the vitamins that were lost from the vegetables.
  • “No, Junior,” says Grandma Riza, “you can’t have any lemon juice. You’ve just finished drinking your milk. If those two are together in your stomach, the milk will solidify and you will have a stomach ache.” This is funny. So what if the milk solidifies? It is really supposed to do just that because of the action of the hydrochloric acid in the stomach. Grandma Riza should be glad that Junior shows an interest in lemon juice because it will provide him with vitamin C.
  • “Eggs with white shells are more nutritious than those with brown.” How many times have you heard that statement? There is no reason why shell color should determine the nutritive value of an egg. Brown-shelled eggs have the same nutritive value as white-shelled ones.
  • Expectant mothers refuse to eat singkamas (yam bean root) and tomatoes because they are “cold.” What is wrong with cold foods? Anyway, even if the mother were to eat ice cream, its passage down the alimentary tract would it so that by the time it got to the stomach it would no longer be cold.
  • Brown rice is only for poor people. White rice is better. True or false? You decide. White rice has been refined until the outer covering has been completely taken off. That is why it is so shiny and white. But many of the B vitamins are in that outer covering. The brown unpolished rice still has the outer covering. Now, answer: Which is better?
  • “Milk is fattening.” This is a fallacy. No particular food is fattening. Overeating is what fattens people because the extra calories are turned into adipose tissue. Actually, milk is very necessary in the diet because of the calcium it provides.

Filipino Food: Desserts or Kakanin
Filipino Desserts (Kakanin)
  • Steph threw a big party on her sixteenth birthday. All of her friends and relatives came and helped to diminish the piles of food on the table. What was on the table? Chicken adobo, fried chicken, boiled chicken, fritada, menudo, kaldereta, atchara, puto, bibingka, cochinta, sinukmani, suman, and plenty of rice. What’s wrong with this menu? It leans too heavily on the protein and carbohydrate side. All of the main dishes are protein and all of the desserts are carbohydrates. This is one instance where knowledge of variety in foods is necessary. Vegetables could be substituted for some of the meat dishes, and fruit for some of the desserts.

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