When ordering yong tau foo, make these smart choices for a figure- and budget-friendly meal.
Yong tau foo is a great meal option for those on a diet – you get to customise your meal and choose from a wide variety of fresh (and yummy) ingredients. But how fattening and calorie-laden your bowl is depends on the choices you make. Follow these tips to avoid diet pitfalls the next time you are at your favourite hawker stall.
Stay away from the high-calorie picks
This may be obvious, but high-calorie deep-fried picks are not good picks for weight watchers, especially if they are fried again before being served. They may make your bowl of yong tau foo tastier and more exciting, but they’re just not worth the calories. For example, a thin piece of fried bean curd skin comes in at 57.36 calories with 5.74g of fat. Compared to a piece of bitter gourd with fish paste (9.43 calories, 0.21g fat), that’s six times the calories and almost 26 times the fat content!
Go for fresh produce
Leafy greens like nappa cabbage and kang kong are under 20 calories per 100g, a small tomato is just 16 calories, and shiitake mushrooms are around one calorie per piece. Load up on these nutritious and filling choices before picking other yong tau foo ingredients.
Avoid processed foods
Processed foods like meatballs, fried seaweed chicken, surimi (imitation crabmeat) and hotdogs are usually high in sodium, which tends to cause water retention and bloating. When you have the option of choosing so many other fresh and nutritious options, do these really seem so appealing?
Choose your main carb carefully
It may seem like a minor detail, but the type of noodles you choose could save you as much as 85 calories. Based on calculations by the Health Promotion Board, yellow noodles and mee sua have the most calories with 194 and 190 calories respectively per 100g serving. Kway teow sits in the middle with 140 calories, and bee hoon has just 109 calories. Alternatively, if you’re not someone who has to have rice or noodles at every meal, or if you know you’re going to get your daily carb intake elsewhere, consider skipping the noodles altogether.
Hold the sauce
Be conscious of how much sweet red sauce or chilli sauce you’re adding to your order. One spoonful of the chilli sauce can add a little over 60 calories to your meal, while a spoonful of red sauce adds more than 20 calories. These figures may seem negligible, but omitting these yong tau foo condiments may help you get to your goal weight more quickly.
Go for soup
Savvy eaters know that ordering yong tau foo in clear soup (or any noodles in soup for that matter) cuts the calories, and the temptation to add sauces to your dish. However, you definitely don’t want to order laksa broth, as tasty as it may be. Even with healthier picks like bitter gourd, bean sprouts and firm tofu, your order could contain over 600 calories! When ordering yong tau foo with soup, avoid downing the soup as you’ll be taking in lots of figure-bloating sodium as well as all the lard and deep fried scallions that make the soup version less calorie heavy.