The Day Rehab Centre (DRC) kitchen at Bright Vision Hospital was buzzing with activity on a Tuesday, on 10 April 2018. The table was awash with colour –green, yellow, red and black from the freshly washed and cut spinach, tomatoes, cheese and mushrooms. Table spoons, chopping board, glass bowls and a frying pan were laid out neatly by the side.
All these were thanks to Senior Dietitian Lock Poh Leng and three volunteers, Caral Goh, Joanna Tan and Nicole Ow, who have been busy preparing for a cooking demonstration – themed “Bone Health – Prevention and Management of Osteoporosis” – since that morning.
At 2pm, Poh Leng welcomed the “stars” of the day – Uncle Gan, Madam Lee and Madam Ng – recuperating patients at BVH who have had bone or hip fractures. She started the session with a quiz on bone health but it was clear that the patients couldn’t wait for the cooking to start.
As Poh Leng deftly demonstrated the making of a cheese and vegetable omelette (see recipe below), she explained, “In a well-balanced diet, an adequate amount of calcium and vitamin D is needed to build strong bones and help our patients heal from fractures. The recipe we have today incorporates ingredients that contain sources of calcium and vitamin D, such as cheese, green leafy vegetables, milk or soy milk, egg and shitake mushroom.”
In less than 25 minutes, a piping hot omelette was served. As she was tucking in, Madam Ng said with a smile, “it is something very different from our usual hospital routines. I have never been to such a demonstration before at other hospitals. The recipe is so simple and the best part is that it also tastes so good!”
Madam Ng’s husband, Mr Edward Teo agreed. “This session has opened my eyes. I’m touched by the passion and the commitment that the hospital staff and volunteers have shown to the patients. Things like this make a lot of difference in patients’ lives.”
Cheese and Vegetable Omelette
(Recipe is for two servings)
• ¼ cup spinach (can be replaced with frozen vegetables of your choice)
• 4 eggs
• 1 tomato, diced
• ¾ cup (65g) grated Mozzarella cheese
• 1 clove of garlic, chopped
• ½ small onion, chopped
• 2 fresh Shitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
• 1 tablespoon Canola oil
• ½ cup (125ml) low fat milk or calcium-enriched soy milk
• Pepper for extra taste
• 4 cherry tomatoes for a garnish
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 20 to 25 minutes
- Whisk eggs and pepper in a bowl until small bubbles appear. Add vegetables, tomato, cheese, garlic, onion and milk. Stir until well mixed.
- In a non-stick pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil.
- Pour in the egg mixture.
- Reduce heat to low. Cover the pan and cook for 20-25 minutes. Leave it for about 2 minutes before serving with cherry tomatoes.
About BVH Dietetics and Nutrition Services Team
The Healthy Cooking Demonstration, conducted every quarter in English and Mandarin since January 2017, is an additional service that BVH Dietetics and Nutrition Services Team provide to patients. The team is focused on educating patients on their nutritional needs. They see patients at the ward every day, accessing their conditions and advise on their food choices. Taking into consideration the cultural background, religion and lifestyle of patients, they devise individualised meal plans based on patients’ medical conditions and food preferences, with the aim to improve patients’ clinical outcomes.
The team is also involved in setting the guidelines for hospital diets, and specialised in planning tube feeding regimes for patients who cannot eat orally.
“Through the cooking demonstrations and practical lessons, we can equip our patients with the nutritional knowledge that they need, so that they can better manage their conditions by eating healthy food when they are discharged,” said Dietitian Edward Chan.