Here’s a thought: Whip up a healthier version of yusheng. Granted, the entire dish is meant to signify abundance but that doesn’t have to mean an abundance of calories. In fact, The Health Promotion Board notes that a serving of yusheng may contain as many calories as a main meal thanks to the use of oil as well as sweetened plum sauce.
“We do have some customers who request for ‘healthier’ options but as tossing yusheng is a once-a-year affair, most clients are happy with the yusheng options that we provide,” says Michelle Chan, Restaurant Manager of one-Michelin-starred Crystal Jade Golden Palace. “Typically, some customers would request for the service staff who is assisting with the tossing of the yusheng; to add less oil and/or less sauce to suit their palate.”
“The ingredients are mainly fresh fruits and salad leaves instead of the usual yusheng assortment,” says Michelle. “Green salad leaves provide crunch while fruits impart a natural sweetness. Rather than fried ‘pok chui’ biscuits, chef has used sweet potato strips instead.”
As with any recipe, more modifications can be made to further reduce the calories. The sweet potato strips that the restaurant recommends is deep fried but it can be baked or air-fried to a crisp for a similar texture. The fruit jam to be used for the sauce can also be substituted with low sugar options or homemade fruit compotes while plum sauce can be omitted entirely.
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80g Japanese sweet potato, baked or air-fried
50g black fungus, soaked in water till soft and thinly sliced
50g strawberry, thinly sliced
50g honeydew, sliced
50g papaya, sliced
50g apple, sliced
50g watermelon, cubed
100g red carrot, cut into fine strips
100g white radish, cut into fine strips
10g fresh yuzu peel (orange can be used as well)
50g sesame seeds, toasted
50 g pickled onions
20g olive kernals, finely diced. Substite with other nuts)
100g assorted salad leaves, washed and drained
10g Tobiko (flying fish roe)
50g yellow capsicum, cut into fine strips
2 lime leaves, cut into fine strips
2 stalks rosemary
For yusheng sauce:
Fruit jam such as apple or orange marmalade
Plum sauce (can be omitted)
Boiled water, to add to desired consistency
150g peanut oil
1. To make the yusheng sauce, combine about 1 tbsp tablespoonful each of your choice of fruit jam such as green apple jam, lime juice, plum sauce, rice vinegar and pomegranate juice. Season to taste by adding more of all or some of the condiments and add as much water to reach desired consistency.
2. Arrange remaining yusheng ingredients onto plate and sprinkle Tobiko, lime leaves and rosemary leaves at the top.
3. To toss, add peanut oil and yusheng sauce.
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