Few facts about minced meat…

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Hi,

I was inspired to write this post after reading an article in our local newspaper “De Gelderlander” and another one “Consumenten gids”. Both of them covered the topic of minced meat and the fat percentage.

[a]

The fact that quality of minced meat from supermarkets is far away from being ideal is something that I knew already without reading these articles. What surprised me in those two articles was note about the fat percentage. I am sure you recognize the problem of extended fat content (and kind of weird watery liquid) going out of your minced meat when you fry or bake it which reduces weight of your final dish surely by 1/4. That all are the tricks of producers to increase minced meat weight. They perfectly know how to make it heavier. I don’t know how this looks in other countries since I live in the Netherlands but here supermarkets have introduced so called lean minced meat. I’ve tried it couple of times but I haven’t been that much impressed. Now I know why…

 

According to European regulations such as (EC) No 1162/2009 or (EU) No 1169/2011 there are specific requirements concerning the designation of minced meat – see table below [1].

For regular minced meat it may contain between 20-30% fat. That’s quite a lot. It means, after thermal processing, you’ll loose about 1/5, 1/4, or 1/3 of the original volume.

According to Dutch legal norms the maximum fat percentage in minced meat is 25%, while in its lean version 15% [2]. The Consumers Association “Oprecht Consumentenbond” has checked 59 types of minced meat. The first thing they found out is that a regular minced meat from a butcher is less fat than lean minced meat from a supermarket. For example minced meat containing pigmeat had on average 19% of fat, minced pure beef had 17%, while the ones from a butcher had 13% less fat. Incredible!

I recall my first visits in Dutch supermarkets. I was really shocked and disappointed about poor meat quality. That was so contradicted to what I’ve imagined after seeing travel programs, or travel guides about the Netherlands which showed happy cows chewing grass, standing in the sun, etc. Lovely pictures…

[b]

So why then the quality is so bad? I think that is caused by multiple reasons. One of them may be increasing World population and overcrowding. That force to produce more. Overcrowd and race to success encourages producers to invest in cheap agriculture, manufacture and food processing. Personally I also thing that many people don’t care what food they eat, not speaking of quality. The trend of price reductions makes people prone to buy more of worse quality than less of good quality. I could list couple more and more…

[c]

Luckily there are organisations that promote healthy lifestyle and eating habits such us Dutch feeding center “Voedingscentrum”. Accorting to its drive five initiative so called “Schijf van Vijf” only meat having less than 10% fat is advised to consume [2]. Mostly because animal fat contains lots of saturated fat which is unhealthy to people due to increasing bad cholesterol (LDL). “Voedingscentrum” also advise to reduce quantity of meat consumption and heavily promote vegetarian dishes.

 

What do I do? Since couple of years I reduce quantity of meat and since couple of months I consume meat only from butcher… What actually surprised me was that the prices aren’t higher. Yes, it costs me extra time and without a car I couldn’t reach that place but luckily I have one and believe me, the quality of meat is so much better. No extra fat added, any other animal leftovers, water or chemicals to reduce the costs. This meat taste real and good. You go and pay fair price. There is no-one in between. This in fact is a win-win situation. I recall reading few months ago an article, also in “De Gelderlander”, which mentioned that there are less and less butchers in the Netherlands because consumers want cheaper food and don’t care that much about quality. That is also the reason why I want to support butchers. I also believe meat available at small slaughterhouse is from animals raised and treated in better way than the ones used for meat sold to supermarkets.

 

Tip? Start eating less meat, buy meat from butchers. If you have not that possibility and you still buy minced meat in supermarket choose the one that is animal friendly (ironic statement) and buy lean minced meat with the lowest fat percentage e.g. “tartare” [2].

 

Off-topic: Speaking of happy cows mentioned above. Do you remember Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE), commonly known as mad cow disease? If you doubt about your cow and its health state, click here to learn more about how to recognize a healthy from a mad cow 🙂

[d]

 

Curio – to Dutch speaking readers – fat percentage in meat from Dutch supermarket:

 [e]

 

Ok, that is it… I hope I made you start thinking about what meat you eat and planted a seed to your future healthier change.

[f]

Greetings,

Anna *OnMyDish.wordpress.com*

Thanks for being with me. Please share this article if it made you thinking. If you are interested in my other posts, I encourage you to make use of “Post Index” where you can locate and learn about all the posts on my blog.

 

Sources:

[1] Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2011 on the provision of food information to consumers…, Annex 6, Part B.

[2] Consumenten Gids, No.4, April 2017

Picture sources:

[a] http://www.biojournaal.nl/nieuws/2013/0313/Gehakt.jpg

[b] https://annabeljeuring.nl/sites/default/files/foto/reclame/koeien-in-de-ochtend.jpg

[c] http://www.voedingscentrum.nl/nl/gezond-eten-met-de-schijf-van-vijf.aspx

[d] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UAGoyjzSYZY

[e] https://www.consumentenbond.nl/binaries/content/gallery/cbhippowebsite/tests/gezond-eten/afbeeldingen/hoeveelheid-vet-in-gehakt.jpg

[f] https://assets.greenrushdaily.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Germinating-Cannabis-Seeds-hero.jpg

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Detoxed Lifestyle Challenge…

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Hi,

Since couple years I am continuously reading a lot of books and articles about food industry, and watching documentaries in regard to this topic. My interest concerns not only food but also daily life products such as cosmetics, packaging, dyes, electronics, toys, and clothing! I am terrified with the negative health effects that these items have, including high amount of people with cancer. This seems to be the most common “killer” of today’s society. I bet all of us know at least one person who has/had cancer.

I’d like to shed some light to scientific jargon and then show you the list of products containing EDCs.

edcs-substances

 

The reason of many new, serious civilization diseases are among others EDCs (endocrine disrupting chemicals) such as: brominated flame retardants, well known Bisphenol A (BPA), phthalates (four types: Diethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP), Dibutyl phthalate (DBP), Di-isobutyl phthalate (DiBP) and Benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP)- these are luckily already banned by REACH* in toys and children’s products and will be restricted in electrical equipment by RoHS** from July 2019). Unfortunately the list continues and there are even more substances listed by the EU as Category 1 potential EDCs including several other phthalates, tributyltin compounds, Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDEs), nonylphenols and their ethoxylates, octylphenols, Short Chain Chlorinated Paraffins (SCCP) and several metals including aluminium and copper.

Let’s focus now a bit on a definition of endocrine disruptor, the definition developed by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and widely used on a global basis: “An endocrine disruptor is an exogenous substance or mixture that alters function(s) of the endocrine system and consequently causes adverse health effects in an intact organism, or its progeny, or (sub) populations”. These harmful effects on humans (and animals) are: sexual dysfunction, loss of fertility, cancer, hindrance in natural hormone production resulting in destructive effects on metabolism, hair loss, obesity, growth and development, sleep and mood… Shall I list more?

As you see, in the marathon for more, cheaper, smaller/bigger, whatever you think of… in the race for better future we kind of forgot about our health and the natural environment.

marathon-to-better

Luckily there are great initiatives such as the one started by a group of young researchers from Gdańsk, Poland (my hometown:)), owners of Detoxed Home LLC business, an initiative called “Detoxed Lifestyle Challenge” . Their mission is to show and implement recommendations for reducing exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in daily life. Their challenge is to change the lifestyle into free from EDCs, without sacrificing the benefits of the civilization. If you want to read more about Detoxed Lifestyle Challenge I encourage you to subscribe to their page, here. I fully support their mission and join the challenge as well.

To make this story more real, I’d like to list some of products containing EDCs:

  • Canned food (containing Bisphenol A)
  • Plastic containers (containing Bisphenol A and Phthalates)
  • Plastic bottles (containing Bisphenol A and Phthalates)- the smaller the bottles, the worse because the proportion of EDC to liquid is high
  • Plastic bags (containing Bisphenol A and Phthalates)
  • Cosmetics (containing Bisphenol A, Phthalates and Parabens)
  • Electronic devices (containing Bisphenol A and Phthalates)
  • Clothes/textiles (containing brominated flame retardants)
  • Thermal printed receipts (containing Bisphenol A)- yes, the receipts you get in a shop or restaurants…
  • Eye lenses (containing Bisphenol A)

products-containing-edcs

It’s not possible to avoid all products… But you can try to make at least small steps, same as I did.

I’m not able to escape from electronic devices… and I will not resign from cosmetics but I try to choose the most natural ones, without parabens and the ones that have the least ingredients possible. I switched from cremes to natural oils, etc. I minimised using plastic bags and try to use material or paper ones instead. I hardly eat/drink canned products. Whenever possible I try to store my food in glass containers instead of plastic ones, like in below example…

Just look how simple that is… empty jam glass jar can make your food look more attractive and of course more healthy :):):)

glass-container

Are you with me? Will you also join the “Detoxed Lifestyle Challenge” and detox your home, relatives and environment? You can start to change now…

Greetings,

Anna *OnMyDish.wordpress.com*

If you are interested in my other posts, I encourage you to make use of “Post Index” where you can locate and learn about all the posts on my blog.

 

Regulations and Directives:

* REACH- European Union regulation on Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals

** RoHS- European Union directive on the Restriction of the use of certain Hazardous Substances in electrical and electronic equipment

Sources:

Fresh food all year round…

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Hi,

I was scrolling my old pictures and found this one. These were vegetables that I got in May in my organic package.

vegetables

If you see that photo you may indeed link these vegetables to that period of the year. How misleading that is… Nowadays with all greediness for highest revenue, food became a part of intense, unhealthy manufacturing industry. I do not write about processed food, there is no doubt this kind of food is produced with purpose to make the manufacturers, brand owners richer and more influential. I am writing about unprocessed food, such as fruits or vegetables.

Expensive marketing tricks made people believe they need to eat a strawberry or a tomato in winter. Do you really need that food in winter? No you don’t. What you need are products that provide lots of vitamins and minerals, food that is as little processed as possible, food that will grow during the season, it will be cultivated outside in soil, not coming from hot-/greenhouse farming.

The hot-/greenhouse farming creates food that in fact will never grew in winter. If you have your own garden you will know it is not possible to cultivate strawberries or tomatoes in winter. At least, not in northern Europe… I am sure, in fact I saw it myself today, despite it’s just February I could buy all these vegetables/fruits in my supermarket. This makes me really sad. The availability of the same products all year long make life so boring and so unhealthy. The truths is, food that does not grow in your garden at that time of the year, is either coming from hot-/greenhouse farming or from warm country far away. In result, it’s either low quality or has big impact on our environment due to transportation. Therefore, once again – please eat local, think global. Even little adjustment to the season will be beneficial to you and the environment…

Greetings,

OnMyDish.wordpress.com

If you are interested in my other posts, I encourage you to make use of “Post Index” where you can locate and learn about all the posts on my blog.

Tagiolini with komatsuna and cheese…

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Hi,

Some time ago I came across an interesting green, leaf veggie, also known as “Japanese Mustard Spinach”. It was very similar to bok choy but tasted differently. I decided to experiment and made tagiolini with komatsuna and cheese. The addition of crème cheese and blue cheese gave it a creamy structure and defined taste. Please have a look.

tagiolini-with-komatsuna-and-cheese_1

 

Ingredients:

  • 2x komatsuna
  • 1x onion
  • 1x bowl mushrooms, ca. 250g
  • 1x garlic clove
  • Blue cheese
  • 2tbsp. crème cheese
  • ½ package of tagiolini
  • Parmigiano cheese

Know-how:

  1. Boil tagiolini.
  2. Cut mushrooms in thin strips, chop onion and fry.
  3. Tear komatsuna into pieces and fry with the rest of vegetables.
  4. Strain the tagiolini and pour in a dish.
  5. Top with vegetables and cubes of blue cheese. Top with 1tbsp. crème cheese and parmigiano.

komatsuna-onion-mushrooms-garlic-blue-cheese-creme-cheese-tagiolini-parmigiano

tagiolini-with-komatsuna-and-cheese

tagiolini-with-komatsuna-and-melted-cheese

Greetings,

*Enjoy your meal* OnMyDish.wordpress.com

 

If you are interested in my other posts, I encourage you to make use of “Post Index” where you can locate and learn about all the posts on my blog.

Vegan courgette cutlet…

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Hi,

Oh my God, this recipe is so delicious!!!
I had two courgettes in my fridge and I wasn’t really sure what to use them for… They were a week old and I had no ingredients for pasta. I usually add them to my pastas. I wanted to make cutlets but because my son is allergic to eggs I did a vegan version, so no egg. He is also allergic to wheat therefore I needed to think of my own substitutes for the common ingredients such as wheat flour or bread crumbs which us usually add to any kind of cutlet. I gave it a try… I am more than surprised with the result. I will definitely be making it more often.

vegan-courgette-cutlet

Ingredients:

  • Two courgettes
  • One up to one and a half tbsp. of salt for sprinkling courgette
  • Two garlic cloves
  • One tbsp. soy sauce
  • One tsp. lemon juice
  • One flat tsp. backing powder
  • Three tbsp. spelt flour
  • Salt and pepper
  • Half tsp. brown sugar
  • Six tbsp. oat bran well grind

Know-how:

  1. Grate courgette, sprinkle with salt, approx. 1,5tbsp. Blend well.
  2. After approx. 10 minutes drain courgette.
  3. Place in a blow squeezed garlic, soy sauce, lemon juice, backing powder, spelt flour, sugar, salt and pepper. Blend all ingredients.
  4. Add drained courgette and mix.
  5. Make cutlets and sprinkle from both sides with ground oat bran.
  6. Fry slowly until golden.

vegan-courgette-cutlet-raw

ground-oat-bran

vegan-courgette-cutlet-raw-with-oat-bran

vegan-courgette-cutlet

Greetings,

*Enjoy your meal* OnMyDish.wordpress.com

 

If you are interested in my other posts, I encourage you to make use of “Post Index” where you can locate and learn about all the posts on my blog.

Soy yoghurt poffertjes…

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Hi,

Have you ever been in the Netherlands and tried poffertjes? These are small, fluffy pancakes which are usually served with butter and powdered sugar. I love them. My son unfortunately cannot eat them because he  has an allergy to all ingredients that are used for the poffertjes. Inspired by my husband’s family member I made a small change used yoghurt instead of milk. Also the other ingredients were adjusted to my son’s needs. The result was slightly different because of little sour taste from yoghurt and you could taste a bit of soy (I used soy yoghurt) but we still loved it. I am curios if you liked it too. I encourage you to go for traditional recipe and use normal caw milk or experiment a bit like me and use caw/soy vanilla yoghurt or quark. I think you will like all versions of this recipe.

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Ingredients (for 15 poffertjes):

  • 1/2 soy yoghurt
  • 2 quail eggs
  • Pinch of salt
  • ca. 1/2 cup of spelt flour

Know-how:

  1. Combine soy yoghurt, quail eggs and pinch of salt. Whisk smooth.
  2. Add spelt flour and whisk smooth again. The cake must be as for pancakes, therefore play around with yoghurt and flour in case the structure is too thick or too loose.
  3. Heat oil, add soup spoons of the batter and create mini pancakes.
  4. Fry from both sides until poffertjes become nicely golden.

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Enjoy,
Anna *OnMyDish.wordpress.com*

 

If you are interested in my other posts, I encourage you to make use of “Post Index” where you can locate and learn about all the posts on my blog.

Vanilla soy yoghurt cake…

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Hi,

I was looking for an interesting, vegan cake recipe on-line. I couldn’t find anything with the limited ingredients I had at home. Therefore I decided to risk and did this. The result was great!

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Ingredients

  • 2 cups of spelt flour.
  • 1 package of backing powder (for 500g flour).
  • 1/2 cup of sugar (I used the brown one).
  • 1.5 tablespoon of linseed.
  • 3 quail eggs.
  • 4 tablespoons of maple syrup.
  • 1/2 cup of vanilla soy yoghurt.
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla aroma.
  • 1/2 cup of oil.
  • Handful of raisins.

Know-how:

  1. Pour 1,5 tablespoon of linseed in 3 tablespoon of hot water. Wait approximately 3 minutes.
  2. Mix all dry ingredients.
  3. Add soaked linseed, eggs, vanilla soy yoghurt, maple syrup,  vanilla aroma and oil to the dry ingredients. Mix until smooth consistency.
  4. Add raisins and mix with a spoon.
  5. Place baking paper into a 25x12cm loaf tin and pour the cake mixture into the tin.
  6. Transfer to the oven and bake for 45min in 180oC.
  7. Cool and enjoy.

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Enjoy,
Anna *OnMyDish.wordpress.com*

 

If you are interested in my other posts, I encourage you to make use of “Post Index” where you can locate and learn about all the posts on my blog.

What I ate on Monday… My delicious breakfast!

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Hi,

You probably remember that I love waffles… 🙂

image

During my stay in America I ate them almost every day for breakfast. The American waffles are quite simple what you can see my old post here. You eat them either with jam or with maple syrup. The one I ate today was much more exciting and tasty. It was made by my husband’s sister, not a wafflebot or a package. You taste the difference immediately. The topping which I applied made my waffle even more spectacular 😉

I spreaded fromage blanc, decorate the waffle with freshly picked up fruits from my garden (gooseberry, blueberry and wild strawberry) and pour with maple syrup… Yummy!!!

Here’s the result:

image

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It was so delicious!!! Do you like waffles too?

 

Greetings,
Anna *OnMyDish.wordpress.com*

 

If you are interested in my other posts, I encourage you to make use of “Post Index” where you can locate and learn about all the posts on my blog.

Sweetened condensed milk with puffed spelt “candies”…

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Hi there,

Today I want to share with you my best ever recipe… I call it best ever because it reminds me my childhood when there were limited products available. This kind of sweets was awesome. My mom always made it with love and joy as she knew that is what I love the best. Unfortunately I am missing one ingredient (or maybe two) which are not available in the place where I live now but still I could achieve almost the same taste as in the past.

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The recipe is slightly time consuming because of the cooking time but it is very simple and worth of your time… and you need just two ingredients 🙂

Ingredients:

  • A can to sweetened condensed milk.
  • Puffed spelt, approximately 100g.

Out of 1 can of milk and 100g puffed spelt you should get 3 full big dishes of the “candies”.

 

Know-how:

  1. Pour cold water in a pan to cover approximately 1/2 can of sweetened condensed milk. Cover pot with a lid.
  2. Boil for about 2,5 hours. Leave the can in the pot until cold.
  3. Open can and mix with puffed spelt.
  4. Place into the small paper baking moulds for cupcakes.
  5. Eat directly.

 

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I love to eat these “candies” directly when they are still crispy but you can put them into a fridge or freezer.

 

Enjoy,
Anna *OnMyDish.wordpress.com*

 

If you are interested in my other posts, I encourage you to make use of “Post Index” where you can locate and learn about all the posts on my blog.

Apricot “Rafaello”…

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Hi,

Inspired by my previous discovery vegan, super quick banana cake… I decided to look around in vegan world of sweets.

My son loves sweets… which kid doesn’t? I wanted to find a healthy, easy and attractive sweet for my son. Once I’ve came across apricot “Rafaello”… I though I’ll give it a shot. I was surprised how quick it is and how tasty, especially when it’s still warm! We loved it and that’s definitely something I’ll make more times.

2016-04-09 17.07.47-apricot rafaello

Ingredients:

  1. Half cup of dried apricots
  2. Half cup of sliced almonds (peeled)
  3. Half cup of coconut flakes
  4. Few drops of vanilla extract
  5. Pinch of salt

Know-how:

  1. Pour dried apricots in very hot water for few minutes.
  2. Drain apricots and place into the blender.
  3. Add the rest of ingredients into the blender and mix well until you get a sticky consistency.
  4. Farm balls (you can put a whole peeled almond inside if you wanted to).
  5. Coat with coconut flakes.
  6. Enjoy!!!

2016-04-09 16.56.49

2016-04-09 16.56.02

09-04-2016-apricot rafaello

Enjoy,
Anna *OnMyDish.wordpress.com*

If you are interested in my other posts, I encourage you to make use of “Post Index” where you can locate and learn about all the posts on my blog.