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Are you familiar with the common ingredients in confinement food? What are they? Apart from the herbs, other foods are pretty much the same.
In Chinese tradition, confinement refers to a one-month period after childbirth where new mothers are required to follow a set of strict practices, believed to help in her recovery and future health. Confinement focuses on two main areas – meals and practices. The food consumed during confinement are prepared in a special method, using various kinds of herbs and ingredients that promote healing, fight infection and help to replenish your body. These meals and practices are also said to be preventive measures for future health problems. Thus many women adhere to these rules strictly.
Here are a number of herbs and ingredients usually used in the preparation of confinement meals and their health benefits :
Ginger is one of the most used ingredients in the preparation of confinement meals. Ginger for confinement is normally advised for dispelling “wind” because a mother’s body goes into a “cold” state after childbirth and she may find traces of “wind” in her body after child birth. Ginger helps to eliminate wind and prevent ailments like rheumatism and body aches by keeping the body warm.
Black vinegar is known to purify the blood and cleanse the arteries. In confinement meals, black vinegar is used in the popular dish known as pork trotters in ginger and black vinegar.
If you have always used sesame oil in your daily cooking, you might be surprised to know that it is also recommended to use sesame oil for confinement food! Sesame Oil helps in improving blood circulation and is used to suppress wind in the body. It is high in Vitamin E, iron and calcium. When added to dishes, it gives out a strong aroma making the food smell even more appetizing.
Another common confinement ingredient! Of course, black fungus benefits are abundant! It is usually boiled in soups or fried with vegetables and works to cleanse the body and expel stale blood. For health purposes, black fungus is often consumed as a supplement to nourish lungs liver and the stomach.
Angelica (Dang Gui)
Angelica is traditionally used as a herb to enhance blood circulation. It is considered a “heaty” herb which can help in keeping the body warm. Some women use angelica to reduce menstrual cramps and pains.
Red dates are a kind of superfood known for enriching and replenishing the blood. It is also considered a “heaty” ingredient and often boiled together with dried longan. Most women only drink red dates and longan tea during confinement to ensure that their body is kept warm.
As you can see, some of the ingredients are pretty common and easy to find such as ginger and sesame oil whereas some of them you might not be too familiar with, and that’s okay! That’s what we wrote this for, so you can refer to this list whenever you need to head for grocery shopping. You can drop by any next-door herbal shop to get these ingredients.
The above are some of the main ingredients used in the preparation of confinement food.
Traditionally, confinement dishes were limited to only the recipes passed from for generations as it is believed that those are the essential dishes which can help new mothers recover quicker. Over the years, dedicated teams at Tian Wei Signature, who are passionate about culinary and nutrition have explored various ways to make confinement food more interesting. Dishes prepared by Tian Wei Signature have been creatively modified with a twist, making every dish different from the traditional style of preparation. At the same time, this team of dedicated people also make it a point to ensure that they still maintain the essential herbs and ingredients for confinement meals in their dishes so that mothers get the nourishment that they need to replenish their bodies.
As it is frequently mentioned, it is best to leave your confinement meals in the steady hands of those who are trained and experienced in this field. Let your meals be the least of your worries, so that you can channel your energy towards your little bundle of joy.