Anatomy of a Food Label - Part 2

>> Saturday, 30 January 2010

When you look at the Nutrition Facts Table on food labels, do you know what it means when you see calories from fat? What about Percent Daily Value (% Daily Value)? Do you understand that? It's explained in this week's column. Many of us make decisions based on the Health Claim or Nutrient-Content Claim of food labels... what are those? Read this week's column where that and much more is discussed. Does the label on your Canola or Vegetable oil bottle say: Cholesterol Free? If it does, it is a sales gimmick! Read why in the column. This concludes the 2-part series on the Anatomy of a Food Label. The column is full of tons of easy-to-understand information that I am sure you will be copying and saving.

Just one important note - click here to see and read an enlarged version of diagram mentioned in the column. Once there, dependenting on your browser, you may have to click open or download to view the diagram. Sorry for the inconvenience.


As many of you know, I am not really a breakfast person but for the past few months I've been trying to eat breakfast because I know that it's an important meal of the day. During the week, I eat oat bran and alternate with cornmeal porridge with a sprinkling of cinnamon and then on weekends, when I have a little more time, I prepare a meal-like breakfast such as the one shown after the cornmeal porridge.



  • 1/3 cup finely ground cornmeal
  • 1/3 cup room temperature water
  • 1 cup water
  • Sugar and milk to taste
  • Dusting of freshly ground cinnamon


  1. Add cornmeal and 1/3 cup water to a bowl and let soak for 5 minutes
  2. Heat 1 cup water and bring to a boil on medium heat. When the water comes to a boil, pour in soaked cornmeal (scrape the bowl to get everything)
  3. Stir with a whisk immediately to avoid lumps. Reduce heat to low and let cook for 4 - 5 minutes
  4. Sweeten with sugar and milk to taste, pour into a bowl, dust with ground cinnamon and eat hot



For fried plantain:
  • 1 large green plantain
  • Oil for shallow frying
  • Salt to taste

For scrambled eggs:
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • Sliced green onions (white & green parts)
  • Sliced (or minced) chilies to taste
  • Salt to taste
  • (use a non-stick pan & flat rubber spatula)


For fried plantain:
  1. Remove the top and bottom tips of the of the plantain (about 1/2 - 1 inch both sides), peel the plantain, cut in half (crossway), then slice down the middle (lengthwise) and then cut in half lengthways to create wedges
  2. Heat oil in pan on medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Fry plantains for about 5 - 6 minutes turning once. Remove from pan, drain on paper towels and immediately sprinkle with salt. Set aside in a warm place

For scrambled eggs:
  1. Crack eggs in a bowl along with the milk and whisk to mix. Do not over beat the eggs, you just what to break up the yolks and mix the yolks, whites and milk together
  2. Add oil to cold pan on medium - low heat; pour eggs into cold pan and let start to cook. You will need to shake the pan and stir and break up the eggs as they cook gently. Tip: I ususally remove the pan from the heat at various intervals and then put it back over the heat, this is to ensure that the eggs do not over cook or get scorched.
  3. When eggs are about done, season with salt and then toss in the green onions and chilies. Fold to incorporate
  4. Serve hot with fried plantains and a huge cup of tea or coffee

Before I go, I want to thank all the readers of my blog and column for understanding what it is that I do. Thank you very much. Have a good weekend everyone!

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