CHEF SAMBRANO Food Articles Video Recipes




Monday, November 26, 2012


Gout sufferers know all to well that the pain from a flare up is not just painful but can cause deep depression. Imagine your big toe, and or ankle is inflamed and swollen, and just the air from the fan can cause more intensity to the pain areas. And this leads to the victim of gout to call in sick from work, missing possibly days to weeks without pay. Gout is something sufferers should take very seriously, because gout can possibly kill you.

It is a form of arthritis caused from diets rich in purines, that when it gets into the digestive system it turns in to crystal forming uric acid that travels through the bloodstream and then settles as sharp needle like weapons that attack the joints, anywhere from the foot to the hand, and I've seen a friend get gout in his head, wasn't funny you heard that right, his head had swollen, and his face became shiny, and painful. Gout is like the Devil attacking you, to put you out of commission, and to sit you down for a long spell so you can't get to work, you can't be fruitful, not with gout pain.

Diets, primarily animal proteins can give someone gout, the rich meats like beef that is well marbled and not cooked well, organ meats, pork, even some poultry, and even some fish can have high amounts of purines. So what is safe for gout as far as diets? Everyone is different, not everyone is the same, a sufferer will need to keep a daily log of the food he or she eats, and from there dissect what may have caused an intense flare up.

For myself, a lean protein meal is safe, such as a grilled chicken breast, lightly seasoned with some salt and pepper and maybe some herbs and spices. The breast is leaner than the leg portion, studies have shown that the dark meat of chicken can be high in purines, and a limited amount of the breast meat for a meal is okay. Considering a sufferer eats a lot of greens, and some fruit and of course lots of water to flush out the uric acid.

There are no guarantees that eating lean chicken breast will not give you gout, but it should be safe for most people especially those that eat lots of rich beef or pork. If you are one of those, it's time to rethink your animal protein intake, change from eating the rich meats to leaner cuts. Let's do a simple chicken breast recipe.


1 large boneless and skinless chicken breast

1 cup of orange juice 

1 clove of garlic

1 tsp. chopped thyme

1 tbsp. vinegar

1 tsp. minced onions

2 tsp. soy sauce

1 tsp. sesame oil

In a bowl, mix all of the ingredients first, and then marinate the chicken breast overnight in the refrigerator.


1. Heat up a grill to medium high heat

2. Remove chicken from he marinade, let stand at room temperature for about 20 minutes.

3. Grill the chicken where the skin was first side down, grill for about 7 minutes, and then turn it over and grill another 7 minutes. Check for doneness with a thermometer, if it reads around 160 it will be good to eat.

4. Take the marinade and put it into a saucepan, heat up pan over high heat, bring to a boil, making sure it is very hot to kill any bacteria. Once hot, pour marinade over some chicken pieces, eat when served to prevent food poisoning.

Sunday, November 25, 2012


Sukiyaki, that Japanese table sensation, it's all about the beef and the sauce buddy! But because of the masses that have high blood pressure, gout, and diabetes, we'll do a low sodium, low glycemic Sukiyaki. This one is very basic, so anyone can whip this together. I'll go over the ingredients with you right here and right now.

But before I do... let's go over some essentials of what Sukiyaki is, and I've blogged this before, but some friends wanted a healthier version. So Sukiyaki is beef that is thinly sliced, veggies sliced into bite sized pieces as well, and this meal is cooked at the table, modern day sukiyaki is cooked with an electric pan set in the center with a platter of bits of food to be cooked by the diner. A little oil is heated in the pan or grill, the beef is then seared with the sukiyaki sauce and other veggies, and the meat is then dipped in an egg wash before a bite is taken, though the egg dip is optional but it does lend a richness that only an egg can lend.

The word "yaki" in Japanese means to sauté or to grill, just for your information. So get ready for this here meal. Here we go, drum roll please... let's meet the ingredients.


1 lb. thinly sliced well marbled beef, cut into bite sized pieces

Rice noodles rinsed and cut into 3 inches

7-8 shitake mushrooms stems removed

1 enoki mushroom trimmed

1 green onion sliced into 2 inch lengths

1 small Chinese cabbage washed and cut into bite size pieces

1 grilled tofu cake cut into bite size pieces

Sukiyaki Sauce

1/2 cup soy sauce

3 tbsp. sake

5 tbsp. agave nectar

1/2 cup or so of filtered water


3-4 large organic eggs beaten


On a platter, arrange the meat and veggies accordingly, make it look presentable and not messy, easy for the diner to pick up the bits with his or her chopsticks. Heat up your electric pan or grill. Place slices of meat on the grill, add some sukiyaki sauce and veggies until all is somewhat softened. Dip into egg and eat with rice.

Monday, November 12, 2012


Thanks for stopping by the blog again, though I have mentioned that my purpose is to share healthy food news, tips and recipes, I also don't want to limit my message about food, I mean to say that some of you who don't have a strict diet can also benefit some from my message. so today I want to share with you some essential books on food for you who are home cooks. As a cook myself, I'm always looking for ideas to add to my arsenal because we are still students of life and continued learning is well...essential.

Being from Hawaii, my food influence continues to grow as Maui becomes home to a vast array of people from all over the world. However I grew up with a Pacific/Asian influence from Hawaiian staples like kalua pork, fried aku, raw ahi, and taro, to Japanese influences like tempuras, bentos, teriyaki, sukiyaki etc. to Chinese, Korean, and my heritage Filipino. So on this post I'll have you go to Amazon or your local Barnes & Noble and see if you can get a local Hawaiian cookbook on Yellow Fin tuna (Ahi) by Joanne Fujita, this book came out around 2004, and for around 8.00, this book has all the important dishes we love in Hawaii, and you can make these dishes anywhere in the world as long as you can purchase ahi in frozen or fresh form and Asian ingredients you'll do pretty good.

Some of the staples you should practice from this book comes from these following pages.

Page 12-13 Furikake-Crusted Sashimi, because of copyright laws, I cannot place the recipes, however I'll briefly tell you what it is, it is about 2- 1 pound ahi filets that is crusted with furikaki a dried seaweed rice condiment and seared in a hot pan, leaving the outside crusted but the inside raw. If you love sashimi this is a good staple, and when sliced nicely on a platter you can garnish it with flowers or herbs leaving you looking like a gourmet chef. Locals here love to use wasabi, mayonnaise, and soy sauce to make a condiment as a drizzle or dip.

Page 18-19 Straight Hawaiian Style Inamona Poke.
Hawaiians love poke (poh-keh); it is cubed raw ahi, and seasoned primarily with seaweed, Hawaiian red chile pepper, kukui nut (or sub with cashew). Also salt. Great if you are having a few cold ones watching the game on the weekends, or just chilling out with friends, poke can be a meal if there's a huge bowl of rice, I've seen locals myself included to just nail poke in all varieties before the main course is served!

Once you try some of these recipes, you can get creative, Joanne lays down the footings for you to grow as an Ahi connoisseur, if you are into Italian cooking there's no reason you can't add Italian herbs to this and make it unique. Again Ahi is Yellow Fin tuna, cubed and raw (poke), sliced raw (sashimi). Also slow cooked in a wok with garlic and ginger with soy sauce makes a nice cooked and tender fish dish.

The next book comes from the editors of Whole Living Magazine, POWER FOODS $24.99 US, is a nice illustrated and easy read with lots of healthy recipes. 150 recipes, I do recommend this book if you are looking for healthy foods that will jack up your energy. Forwarded by Martha Stewart, yeah I know... Martha? Well, she's a celebrity and it adds to the value, but I am impressed by this book, I haven't tried any of the recipes but the soup section looks good, and also there's a lot of information on nutrition that's essential to a book of this caliber.

Page 126, Salmon Salad & Curried Egg on Multigrain bread. A simple meal that does not take a trained chef to fabricate, a child can piece it together and it is much healthier than eating a Super Burger from Burger Dude. Page 89, Pecan Pancakes w/ Mixed Berry Compote. Breakfast that's totally healthy, from scratch pancake mix, made with all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, wheat germ, baking powder, baking soda, salt, low fat yogurt, butter, egg, and pecans, honey, lemon zest, and mixed fruit. (If you have celiac disease, this has to be altered). Page 236, Whole Wheat Pizza w/ Artichokes and Pecorino. This is a nice recipe because it calls for pretty much ready made stuff, frozen artichoke hearts, lemon, extra virgin olive oil, frozen whole wheat pizza dough, ricotta cheese, plum tomatoes, Kalamata olives, Romano cheese, fresh basil leaves. Kids can put this together too, and it's definitely healthier than Pizza House, or Joe's Greasy Pizzas! If you are allergic to some of these ingredients you can substitute it with your favorites and safe to eat ones.

Hope this gives you some ideas, for your library or just as a possible gift, if you have any questions you can email me.

Friday, November 9, 2012


Thanks for stopping by the blog, today I'll be posting a gout friendly roasted chicken, as far as purines is concerned, chicken has moderate purines that get turned into uric acid. Check with your physician or dietician if this recipe is okay. Just remember to eat lots of fruits like apples, black cherries, and good fresh juices to help you cleanse. And if you are on a medication to treat your gout attacks continue to take them if it helps you, other than that, stay away from foods that have higher purine levels and keep your foods low in sodium and sugars as well.


2 medium organic lemons, sliced to your desired thickness

Handful of rosemary leaves

1 whole roasting chicken 5-6 pounds

6 tbsp. olive oil divided

1/2 to 3/4 lb. peeled and trimmed parsnips

1/2 to 3/4 lb. peeled carrots

3 large russet potatoes quartered

1 tbsp. chopped fresh thyme

1 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley


1. Preheat oven to 350 deg. F. Place half of lemons under chicken skin, as well as sage leaves, do the same. Now place the rest of the lemons into the cavity of the chicken. Using twine, tie the legs together, try to place the wings under. 

2. Brush a tablespoon of olive oil over the chicken, a few more if you want. Place the chicken in a roasting pan and roast in lower part of the oven for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, please use a instant read thermometer to check the temperature at its thickest part it should register 165 deg F. (depending on your oven, it may take longer, or it may roast quicker)

Rules for roasting chicken in minutes are: 20 minutes per pound at 375 deg. F., I like 350 deg. F, in the oven I work with. The best way is to calculate 20 minutes per pound, simply multiply the weight of the bird, for instance we got a 6 lbs. one, multiply 6x20=120 minutes, now divide that by 60 minutes you get 2 hours. So even with this calculations, lots of variables can happen, your wife opens the oven door to add in her other baked goods, this robs the oven of heat.

Always remember that watching the roasting process every few minutes is key, and make sure you use a professional grade instant read thermometer and once it reaches even 155 deg. F, you can remove the bird from the oven and it will continue to cook as it rests. In past restaurant jobs I've seen chefs remove a bird at around 150 deg. F, and by letting it rest, the meat cooked up to 165 deg, rendering a juicy bird.

Tip: If you want a crispy bird (skin), crank up the oven for about 20 minutes to 475 deg. F towards the end, the high heat will crisp the skin.

3. Transfer the bird to your cutting board and let it rest for about 20 minutes (this continues to cook when left out of the oven).

4. As the bird is resting, cut parsnips and carrots into match sticks, toss it with the potatoes in a baking pan with the rest of the olive oil, thyme and parsley. Return baking pan to oven and roast for 40 minutes or until softened.

To serve, remove skin (to not eat fat), slice chicken into pieces by removing the legs, wings, and breasts, save breasts for ones with gout, and the others can partake in the dark leg meat. Remove the carrots, parsnips and potatoes and spoon on to individual plates. Season lightly with salt and pepper.

Note: It is safer for gout suffers on the whole to eat the breast meat which is lower in purines. Drink lots of water, eat lots of preferred vegetables and fruits.

Thursday, November 8, 2012


In these times of bad eating habits, there's a lot of people that are ill, and cannot tolerate certain foods because those foods can make them ill, or can even cause death. I know first hand that I have to watch my purine intake because it can set off a gout attack that can put me out for over a week, the purines morph into uric acid that produces sharp crystal like spikes that attacks the joints, most recently it affected my right ankle rendering me useless without a pair of crutches and the assistance of family to drive me around. The pain is excruciating to say the least, and it is not fun at all. So after some tests and counseling from a dietician, I must omit animal proteins that has moderate to high purines. And of course wherever I go someone is offering me a meal, and I have to ask them what's in it, also I have to eat low sodium to combat my high blood pressure, so asking what's in the meals that is being offered can be offensive to the person that's offering, some don't understand that the steak they're offering me is a prime cut, but it can set me off to a week on the couch with a swollen foot. I'm slowly understanding people with special diets, it is difficult, I'm an adult so I can handle it, but what about kids?

Recently I ran into a little girl who has Celiac disease, a disease that forbids her to eat anything with wheat in it or gluten, her stomach cramps up and she can't go to school, and can't enjoy a happy childhood. "I have to pack her gluten free snacks to take to school," her mom says. "And it is hard because some of the kids pick on her because they feel she's special, she's just like every kid, only with a diet she has to adhere to." If you look up gluten and celiac disease, it is a very popular disease, experts claim 1 out of 130 people in this country has celiac disease.

Or Diabetic patients they must also find foods that are safe, and with that it is extremely difficult when traveling, and finding a restaurant where they can request foods low in glycemic, low in sugars, where chefs use natural flavorings instead of processed stuff, it is very hard, like the Celiac and Diabetic, I understand the frustrations. Once I went to a plate lunch counter, I asked the girl at the counter if the cook can omit the oyster sauce in the stir fry because for gout oyster is a shell fish, and that is high in purines, I requested no oyster sauce to only be looked at with funny looks like, "You gotta be kidding, you want us to go the extra mile for you? Sorry dude that's how we make it, you don't like it take a hike!" It's hard I understand now more that ever that for those with health issues and need special diets, eating out is a task at hand.

This leads me to asking all of you foodies that love to cook in your expensive kitchens, that love to show off your skills you've learned from watching Iron Chef, or Giada, please ask your guests if any of them may need a special meal made or if they can't have certain ingredients, you as a host want to make them feel welcomed, and at ease. If a friend is bringing a friend that is a total vegan, maybe make a dish of just organic tofu, if you are making a big batch of ribs on the grill, and someone can't eat gluten, have some gluten free sauce at the ready. Diabetics, have some diabetic friendly condiments at hand too, you'll make them feel good. Imagine that you have an eating disorder, but you are invited to a party, and you get there, but can't eat a single dish? You'll feel funny, at the same time you know if you do eat what' s there you'll get sick, it is not fun to go out and say, "sorry can't eat any of this."

So understand that if you are hosting any foodie event, ask if anyone is allergic to anything, or if they have a special diet, you'll be the best host ever when people like these come to visit. If you are a food enthusiast, learn about nutrition not just cooking methods, or making your dishes look fancy, learn what's happening in the world of health and foods. Be the ultimate foodie in your social circle, I bet you a million bucks, someone in your circle of friends has a health issue, or just want to eat healthy. Okay go ahead and make grandma's fried chicken and mashed potatoes, but have some low cholesterol foods hanging around the table, like some grilled fish and veggies too. Also I've learned as a cook myself, to not put lots of salt on stuff, let your diners add that on at the table.

Good Luck in finding that right balance.