I made 100% plant-based, gluten-free Japanese lunch boxes to celebrate women's lunar new year last weekends. Here's the menu of the lunch box.
- Root vegetable chowder
- Stuffed cabbage roll with sweet vegetable soup
- Azuki and pumpkin stew
- Steamed broccoli salad with roasted sesame seeds
- Red cabbage salad
- Kiriboshi daikon (dried radish)
- potato salad with hand made chickpea mayo
- Sautéed spiral Konjac with savory soy sauce
- Steamed half polished brown rice with lotus seeds (colored by beets juice & Umesu)
Here's the info. about Umesu → https://wanowa.weebly.com/alternative-medicine/umesu-eliminator-for-toxin
- Sake kasu cheesecake (sake kasu is the lees left over from the refining process of Sake production. it is probiotic, and highly nutritious and has robust, aromatic flavor. )
I made the steamed rice with lotus seeds. Lotus seeds have been used as an herbal medicine since ancient times. They contain vitamins, calcium, potassium, and fibers. They are a stabilizer for your nervous system, female balance hormones to help menstrual disorders or menopausal disorders, slowing down the aging process, managing diabetes and many other symptoms.
It is very simple to cook lotus seeds. You can prewash them first, and soak them in the cold water for 6-8 hours prior to the cooking. Then, you can cook together with rice. I try to eat them a few times a month. They have a nutty, sweet flavor and very delicious. I buy them at a store called Heartland organic natural food in San Jose, but you can buy any local Chinese market about $10 or so.
Here's the information that I buy my lotus seed if you are interested.
I catered the traditional Japanese dessert, called OHAGI to the Japanese community in the Bay Area on Valentine's day. OHAGI is very popular sweets among Japanese. The typical OHAGI is usually made with glutinous (sweet sticky) rice, filled with sweet red bean (AZUKI) paste, and covered by flavourful roasted soybean (KINAKO) powder. You can buy regular OHAGI at any Japanese markets, But they are store-made and using a lot of white sugar, food additives and chemicals.
Since it was a sweet Valentin's day, I created five different kinds of Wanowa's versions of OHAGI (chocolate, matcha, strawberry, sweet potato & pumpkin, and sweet azuki bean ).
They are all 100% plant-based & gluten-free, using organic grains, beans, vegetables. For sweeter, I only used dates, raisins, brown rice syrup and maple syrup. So, they are all kind to our well-being💕 They all came out wonderfully, and I was so happy to bring them to the people who love Japanese sweets.
I don't use white refined sugar in my cooking including sweet deserts for many reasons. If you google, there are many studies about the danger of sugar. Above all, I would like to introduce you a fascinating experiment about sugar intake at Tokyo University. When you intake sugar, both of your stomach and intestines suddenly stop functioning. Usually, when you eat food, your stomach automatically starts to digest, but if you take any kind of sugar, the motion of the stomach suddenly stops for about 30 minutes. This phenomenon was named "sugar reflex." So, if you eat sweet food before a meal, the food you ate later will remain in the stomach as it is undigested before this sugar reflex cannot be solved. This is a scary result!
Not so long ago, there was a popular diet called "chocolate diet" in Japan. It was said that if you eat a few chocolates prior to the meal, you don't go crazy about eating too much food because you don't feel hunger. Hence you can control your appetite. And I think that is because your stomach gets relaxed and stop functioning after eating chocolates according to the above experiment. So, it is true that you lose your appetite, but it is sort of dangerous diet since all the food you ate after having chocolates remains in your stomach without digesting...
Any course menu of cuisine such as French, Italian or Japanese, the deserts comes always at the end, and it makes a lot of sense now. After all the food you eat, your stomach gets relaxed by finishing your deserts at the end. But if you or your child have any trouble digesting, I would definitely recommend you to skip the desert. You could probably eat dessert alone at a different time. Also, it is a wise choice to avoid having any kind of sweet drinks during the meal. I see so many children having sodas while they are eating meals. It is very scary when you think about what is happening inside their stomach. The eating habits of this daily accumulation will eventually stagnate the gastrointestinal tract, and they are more likely developing any sort of health disorder later on. Since our stomach plays the role of the powerhouse in the body, it is very important to keep it healthy. By avoiding sugar intake will benefit a healthy stomach for sure.👍
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