TAIPEI (Taiwan News)--Taiwanese people have the habit of eating steamed spring roll ( (潤餅) during the Chinese Tomb Sweeping Day festival, which falls on the coming weekend.
However, steamed spring rolls sold at markets usually contain much oil and sugar, and eating a couple of them, and you run the risk of exceeding the recommended daily calorie intake. But if choose your own ingredients and make your own rolls, each of them will contain at least 100 kilocalories less than its market counterpart, according to the estimate of a dietitian.
Steamed spring roll is different from fried spring roll in that the stuffing of the former is stir-fried into different dishes and after putting a bite of every dish or dishes of your selection onto a round thin piece of ready-to-eat dough and rolling it up, the steamed spring roll is ready to serve.
Dieticians estimated that a steamed spring roll from a market contains more than 300 kilocalories, and some of them contain too much potassium and phosphorous and are not suitable for patients with chronic kidney disease.
Tainan Municipal An-Nan Hospital dietitian Ho Yi-chin said a regular steamed spring roll sold at market usually uses two pieces of dough with calorie content equaling to one fourth of a bowl of rice, and the dishes for the stuffing usually include lima bean, cabbage, leeks, bean sprouts, dried bean curd, bamboo strips, celery, egg crisp and peanut powder and sugar powder as toppings.
Some steamed spring roll stalls or stores also put red yeast pork, streaky pork and sausage into the stuffing, and some vendors in southern Taiwan even generously packed yellow noodles into the roll.
The Tainan Department of Health suggests that regular households make their own steamed spring rolls by using whole wheat dough and avoiding using fried foods as stuffing. The dishes for the stuffing should be mostly vegetables, with just a few dishes of lean meat and soy beans products for protein and fresh nuts to replace peanut powder and natural seasonings to replace sugar powder, the department said.
People can also use natural ingredients, such as scallion, ginger, garlic, coriander leaves, chili pepers, and lemon juice, and pickles or curry powder to make steamed spring rolls of different tastes, according to the department.
The department said the belief that steamed spring roll is light food with low calorie content is actually wrong, but people can select their own ingredients to make this traditional snack themselves for the benefit of lower calories and better health.