Steamed food is healthier than fried and China loves steamed food!
One of the biggest differences between Chinese and western cooking is that because there is not so much deep-frying, oven roasting or baking involved in the Chinese home cooking process, generally, Chinese cooking is healthier.. Instead of baking, even for the final touch after boiling, stir-frying or simmering, and most of the time Chinese people will either stir-fry to fully cooked, or they’ll put into a steamer to proceed.
- Another noteworthy difference is that Chinese don’t use much cheese compared to other countries.
- This is because most Chinese milk is produced in Nei Menggu – Inner Mongolia, and used for all of China’s milk requirements – so this means cheese gets kind of left at the back of the queue!
- Steamed dishes are healthier than fried dishes, using less oil, and producing less smoke!
This is a guide on some of the best healthy Chinese steamed dishes, and all the dishes introduced below are chosen for easy home cooking and preparation low oil and fat, popular on Chinese tables.
They’re surprisingly delicious and tasty for western considering they’re steamed dishes.
1. Steamed Luffa (or Loofah*!)
The type of stuffing can also vary to personal preference, such as steamed with Garlic and Bean Vermicelli, or even using minced beef or pork and mushroom, – anything you like.
- Chinese name: 蒸丝瓜
- Time to steam: 8 – 15 minutes, depends on whether using meat-filling.
Yes, *loofah – the thing Brits used to scrub their backs with in the bath: From Google: ‘Luffa is a genus of tropical and subtropical vines in the cucumber family (Cucurbitaceae).
In everyday non-technical usage, the luffa, which is also also spelled loofah, usually refers to the fruits of the species Luffa aegyptiaca and Luffa acutangula.’
2. Shrimp with Vermicelli and Garlic
The heavy garlic with a seafood sauce flavour blends with the freshness of juicy shrimps. The vermicelli at the bottom absorbs every single drip of tasty juice running down. Some Chinese yellow wine to capture the aroma and highlight the flavor is the secret to this delicacy.
- Chinese name: 蒜蓉粉丝蒸虾
- Time to steam: 10 minutes
3. Steamed Seashells with Garlic
- Chinese name: 蒜蓉粉丝蒸扇贝
- Time to steam: 15-30 minutes
More on Chinese food and health – Is Chinese food healthy?