Lean toward pork

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Lean pork is an excellent source of protein, thiamin, vitamin B6, niacin, iron and, to a lesser extent, riboflavin, potassium and zinc. And it's low in fat to boot. In 100g of lean pork, there is 29g protein and just 6g fat. Herbalists Bang Cam and Vu Quoc Trung, have created the following lean pork recipes for treating various ailments.

Herbalist Bang Cam recommends the following:

- To bolster the blood and kidneys, try this remedy. The ingredients are 100g lean pork, 30g nấm rơm (straw mushrooms), 20g fresh mulberries, 100g young rau cần leaves (water dropwort, or Oenanthe; unrelated to dropwort), chopped ginger, spring onion, cooking oil, a little alcohol, soy sauce, salt and sugar. Start by cleaning the mulberries, then wash and soak for 30 minutes. Wash and cut the dropwort into three-centimeter pieces, rinse and thinly slice the pork, clean the mushrooms and cut off the stems, slice the caps in two, and wash and chop up the spring onion. Now, heat some oil in a pan on the stove and add the ginger and spring onion. Fry the pork until it changes color, then add the alcohol and soy sauce, and mix together. Throw in the mulberries, dropwort and mushrooms, cover with water and stir gently over a high flame. After boiling, lower the heat and continue to cook for ten minutes. Finish off by seasoning with sugar and salt.

- To lower blood pressure with a balanced yin-yang tonic, buy 100g pork lean meat, 10g sơn tra (hawthorn), 200g bean sprouts, 100g phổ tai (boiled seaweed) and some pieces of ginger. Wash the bean sprouts, hawthorn and boiled seaweed, cut the seaweed into medium pieces, wash and slice the pork, and crush the ginger. Put the meat in a pot with 1.5 liters of water and bring to a boil over a high flame, then add the bean sprouts, seaweed and hawthorn. Bring to a boil again, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Season with sugar and salt.

- To cool the body, lower blood pressure and lose weight, use 100g lean pork, 30g ngọc trúc (Solomon's Seal, or Polygonatum officinale all), 200g soya cake, sliced spring onion, and some pieces of ginger and garlic. Wash and dice the ngọc trúc, cube the pork, and cut the soya cake into medium pieces. Heat some oil in a frying pan, toss spring onion, ginger and garlic, then add the pork and fry until the meat turns yellow. Now add the soya cake and ngọc trúc along with some water. Once the water has boiled, lower the flame and simmer for 20 minutes. Season with soy sauce, sugar and salt. A word of warning: Do not use the berries of Polygonatum officinale All as they are extremely poisonous.

- To tone the skin, here's a recipe that needs 50g sliced white mushrooms, four chicken gizzards and 250g lean pork. Simply put all the ingredients in an earthen pot, cover with water and simmer over a low flame for two hours. Season with sugar and salt.

- To combat dry skin when the weather is cold, and to improve eyesight, gather 150g lean pork, two bào ngư (abalone), 15g câu kỷ tử (Chinese wolfberries), and two pieces of thinly sliced ginger. First, wash the pork and cut it into large chunks, wash and dice the abalone, and wash the Chinese wolfberries. Then place all the ingredients in a pot and cover them with water. Bring the pot to the boil, turn down the heat and let the pot simmer for three hours. Season with salt and sugar.

Herbalist Vu Quoc Trung also has some lean recommendations to make.

- To fortify and cool elderly bodies, here's a rather complicated dish that requires one kilogram of mussels, 100g minced lean pork, 30g purple onions, 50g thì là (dill), 50g spring onions, 150g rice, 50g sticky rice, 50g oil and two fresh chilies. Wash the mussels and soak for six hours to remove the grit. Bring a pot of water to a boil, add a pinch of salt, and cook the mussels, stirring steadily. Put a lid on the pot and check from time to time, boiling the mussels until their shells open. At that time their flesh should be easy to pull from the shell. Drain the mussels in a colander and filter the broth for cooking the rice later on. Remove the mussels from their shells, rinse in water, and leave them to drain thoroughly. Once they have dried, add a little pepper, MSG and salt to the mussels and stir lightly. Now fry the violet onions in a little oil, then throw in the mussels and stir-fry lightly. Mix the minced pork with pepper, MSG and salt, and shape them into small patties or balls. Wash the rice, and cook it in the mussel broth until it thickens. Chop the spring onion and dill into small pieces and throw them in, then bring the rice to a boil. Add the mussels and stir steadily for five minutes. Season with sugar and salt. To finish the dish, place a little basil in a bowl, spoon the rice into the bowl, and sprinkle on a little pepper.

- To enhance any medical treatment for gastritis, wash and dice 250g lean pork, and wash 12g bạch cúc (white daisy petals) and four jujubes (red or Chinese dates). Place all in a pot, cover with water and simmer for 90 minutes. Season with sugar and salt.

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