Healthy and Low-Fat Cooking Tips

 Many modern cooks are concerned about preparing healthy, low-fat meals. Fortunately, Japanese food, with its use of fish and fresh produce, is already very low in fat. However, here are a few general tips for adapting the recipes in this book to be even healthier. Throughout the cookbook, you’ll also find specific suggestions for individual recipes–and don’t worry, they’ll still taste delicious!
Almost all Japanese cooking uses soy sauce, a seasoning that, like salt, adds a great deal of flavor but is high in sodium. To lower the sodium content of these dishes, you may simply reduce the amount of soy sauce that you use. You can also substitute low-sodium soy sauce. Be aware that soy sauce labeled “light” is usually actually lighter in color than regular soy sauce, not lower in sodium.
Many Japanese dishes include meat or fish. However, it is easy to adapt most of the recipes in this book to be vegetarian. Tofu, already a common ingredient in Japanese dishes, is a simple and satisfying substitution for meat. Or try adding extra vegetables, especially hearty vegetables like mushrooms, sweet potatoes, or eggplant. In soups that call for dashinomoto, which contains fish shavings, you may substitute konbu, dried kelp.
A few recipes use vegetable oil for sautéing or omelet making. Reducing the amount of oil you use is one quick way to reduce fat. You can also substitute a low-fat or nonfat cooking spray for oil. It’s a good idea to use a small, nonstick frying pan if you decide to use less oil than a recipe calls for.
There are many ways to prepare meals that are good for you and still taste great. As you become a more experienced cook, try experimenting with recipes and substitutions to find the methods that work best for you.


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