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Confinement diets recipes for women who have just given birth

Special confinement diets focus on rebuilding the strength and energy of the new mother. It also helps prepare her body for breast feeding. Different races may have their own confinement foods but interestingly, they all believe in the warming and cooling properties of food groups.

Warming foods are believed to help promote joint strength and improve blood circulation, whereas cooling foods are said to cause rheumatism,arthritis and weak joints.

But most importantly, a new mother must eat a balanced diet to get the proper nutrition to help her heal. She shouldn't be so concerned with weight loss. That can come later when the body is stronger and has recovered from child birth. Try eating a variety of foods. Avoid junk food or heavily processed food.

Eat regular meals and ensure that you get enough protein, calcium and iron. Also make sure you are not dehydrated by consuming lots of fluid.

Chapatti - Phulka Recipe (Serves 15)
Low calorie chapatti (Indian bread). It is also called phulka, as there is no oil applied during the cooking.

You'll need:
3 cups wheat flour
1 tsp oil

1. Mix oil and wheat flour with sufficient water.
2. Knead the dough and divide into 15 portions.
3. Flatten each ball with a rolling pin.
4. Heat it up on a flat griddle without oil.

Nutrition analysis per serving (25 g).
Calories 94 Kcal
Carbohydrates 19g
Protein 2.5g
Fat 4g
Fibre 0.6g

Dhal Makhani Recipe (Serves 4)

You'll need:
1/2 cup whole black lentils (urad dhal)
1 tbsp kidney beans (rajma)
1 cup low fat milk
1/2 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1/2 cup onions finely chopped
1 tsp ginger garlic paste
1 tsp chilli powder
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp coriander powder
3/4 cup fresh tomato pulp
1 tsp oil
2 tbsp chopped coriander (garnish)

1. Wash and soak the dhal overnight. Drain and keep aside.
2. Combine dhal and salt with two cups of water and pressure cook till the dhal is overcooked. Whisk till the dhal is almost mashed.
3. Add one cup of water to milk and simmer for 10 minutes while stirring occasionally.
4. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan and add the cumin seeds. When the seeds crackle add the onions and ginger garlic paste and saute till the onions turn golden brown.
5. Add the chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander and tomato pulp with 1/4 cup of water and saut for five to seven minutes.
6. Add this to the dhal mixture and simmer for 10 to 12 minutes till the dhal is thick and creamy.

Nutritional analysis per serving
Calories 200 Kcal
Carbohydrate 28gm
Protein 9.6g
Fat 5.5g
Fibre 2.78g

Soto Ayam Ambengan Recipe (Serves 4)

You'll need:
1/2 chicken
2 stalks lemongrass
5 kaffir lime leaves (crushed)
1 litre water
2 tsp salt

For condiments:
3 small red onions (minced)
2 stalks spring onion
2 potatoes (cut in small cubes and fried till browned)

1 cup beansprouts, blanched
70g cabbage (sliced thinly and boiled)
4 hard-boiled eggs
1 lime (for garnish)
1 1/2 tbsp sweet soya sauce
2 tbsp chilli sauce

Blend together:
4 cloves garlic
2 cm yellow ginger
1/2 tsp lengkuas
1 tsp pepper

1. Fry onions with lemongrass and lime leaves for one minute. Add the blended spices and fry for two minutes. Add chicken, lightly fry for another one minute, add water, boiled until chicken is soft (about 30
2. Take chicken out and cool. Debone, shred and leave aside.
3. Place all condiment ingredients in a bowl and pour the hot soup over. Garnish with shallots, spring onions, lime juice, sweet soya sauce and hot chilli sauce.

Nutritional analysis per serving
Calories 227 Kcal
Carbohydrate 30g
Protein 18g
Fat 10g
Fibre 0.90g
Sodium 151 mg
Cholesterol 4.9 mg

Nyonya Chap Chye Recipes (Serves 2)

You'll need:
5 dried mushrooms, soaked and halved
2 tbsp black fungus, soaked
15g dried beancurd sticks, soaked for 1 to 2 minutes
20g button mushrooms, halved or quartered
40g white cabbage, cut into large pieces
100g glass noodles, soaked
70g grilled chicken breast
1 tbsp oil
1 tsp chopped garlic
1 tsp salted brown soya bean, mashed
1 litre water

For sauce:
1/2 tsp salt or to taste
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tbsp cornflour for thickening the soup

1. Heat oil in a wok and fry garlic until lightly golden. Add preserved soya bean paste and fry until aromatic. Add cabbage and button mushrooms and stir fry. Add dried mushrooms, black fungus, lily buds and beancurd sticks.
2. Add water and cover wok with a lid. Bring to a boil over high heat,and then simmer over a moderately low heat for 15 minutes.
3. Add glass noodles and cook covered for six to seven minutes. Add chicken meat, season to taste and dish out.

Nutritional analysis per serving
Calories 349 Kcal
Carbohydrate 53g
Protein 14g
Fat 9g
Fibre 0.75g
Sodium 1106 mg

Stir Fried Ikan Bilis Recipes (Serves 4)

You'll need:
100g of dried ikan bilis (soak in cold water for 15 mins to remove excess salt and drain)
5 cloves garlic (wash and crush with the skin)
2 big onions (sliced finely)
3 green chilli ( add more if you like it more spicy)
Curry leaves ( optional)
Oil for frying

1. Fry the ikan bilis until crispy and drain.
2. Heat another pan and pour in 2 tbsp of the (ikan bilis) oil.
3. Add the curry leaves, onion, chilli and garlic. Fry until onions and garlic are slightly brown.
4. Lower the heat and stir fry until the mixture becomes quite dry 5. Finally add the fried ikan bilis and stir well.
6. Remove from pan and serve.

Nutritional analysis per serving
Calories 234 Kcal
Carbohydrate 4g
Protein 19g
Fat 16g
Fibre 0.4g
Sodium 1194 mg

Kailan With Garlic Recipes (Serves 4)

You'll need:
1 tsp young ginger (julienned)
2 tsp garlic minced
1 bowl baby kailan
1 tbsp oyster sauce and light soya sauce
1/2 tsp sugar
White pepper
2 tbsp water
1 tsp cornflour, mix in a bit of water

1. Wash the kailan and cut off the thick stem.
2. Stir fry garlic and ginger until fragrant.
3. Add the kailan with water and the sauce.
4. When the colour of the leaves changes and begins to soften, add cornflour to thicken.

Nutritional analysis per serving
Calories 45 Kcal
Carbohydrate 9g
Protein 2g
Fat 0.2g
Fibre 0.25g
Sodium 904 mg