Skin that chicken to slash fat

Skinless chicken is a weight-watcher’s best friend. Many of the calories contained in chicken come from its skin.

For example, 100g of raw chicken breast – the least oily part of chicken – gives 110 calories without the skin.

With the skin, this portion of chicken has 170 calories, which is 55 per cent more calories.

Most of these calories come from fat.

Eating too much of a type of fat called saturated fat – which is deposited on artery walls when in excess, narrowing the arteries – can raise the risk of developing heart disease and strokes.

So using oil that is low in saturated fat can also make a chicken dish less artery-clogging.

Mr Milind Sovani, chef and director of Indian fine-dining restaurant Song of India, made his creation of murg hara pyaaz (chicken with spring onions) healthier by skinning the chicken and using sunflower oil, which is low in saturated fat.

It is among 150 healthy dishes that the Health Promotion Board and several chefs came up with, either by adapting existing recipes or developing new dishes from scratch.

Mr Sovani said: “The spring onions add an interesting dimension to this dish.”

TIPS

  • Fresh herbs and spices are used to add interesting and varied flavours to dishes. This means less salt is needed.
  • Consumption of high levels of sodium, found in salt, has been linked to the development of high blood pressure.
  • To reduce the risk of developing heart disease, use oil that is high in unsaturated fat, such as soya bean oil, corn oil and peanut oil, instead of oil that is high in saturated fat, such as ghee, butter and blended vegetable oil.

RECIPE

Murg hara pyaaz (chicken with spring onions)
(Serves four)

INGREDIENTS

50g brown onions
15g ginger
6 cloves garlic
3 green chillies, crushed
1 tbs sunflower oil
1 tbs coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin powder
¼ tsp turmeric powder
400g chicken breast meat, skin and bones removed and cut into pieces
100g spring onions, cut into 1cm lengths
1 tsp garam masala powder
2 tbs green coriander, chopped
Salt, to taste

METHOD

1. Grind the brown onions, ginger, garlic and green chillies into a fine paste.
2. Heat the oil in a pan with a thick bottom, add crushed coriander seeds and saute them for a few seconds.
3. Add the paste and saute for four to five minutes.
4. Add cumin powder and turmeric powder and saute.
5. Add the pieces of chicken and saute them for two minutes.
6. Cover the pan with a lid and leave it over a low fire to cook for seven to eight minutes, stirring occasionally.
7. Add the spring onions, garam masala powder, green coriander and salt, mix well and cook over a low fire for two to three minutes.
8. Serve the dish hot.

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION
(Per serving)

Energy: 181 calories
Protein: 25.1g
Total fat: 5.6g
Saturated fat: 0.7g
Cholesterol: 58mg
Carbohydrate: 8.1g
Dietary fibre: 2.7g
Sodium: 364mg


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