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Indian Cuisine
Food for the Brain

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Fans of Indian cuisine know a spicy curry can go straight to the head�and now medical science backs them up. A recent study by researchers at the University of California Los Angeles and the Greater Los Angeles Veterans Affairs Healthcare System concludes that <b>curcumin</b>, the substance that gives the curry spice turmeric its yellow pigment, may help combat Alzheimer's disease. In India's ancient Ayurvedic health system, the spice is known as an anti-inflammatory and a cleanser of blood. Alzheimer's researchers became interested in it due to evidence that the prevalence of the neurological disease among the elderly in India may be considerably lower than that in the U.S.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

English being my 3rd language, could somebody please translate "curcumin" for this dehati ?? <!--emo&Sad--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/sad.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='sad.gif' /><!--endemo-->
Haldi Link?

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Ground from the root of a plant (<b>Curcuma longa</b> L.) of the ginger family, found wild in the Himalayas and grown across South Asia, turmeric powder is surprisingly bland, not hot, tangy or peppery. The powder tastes a little sour<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Holi festival -
<b>Gujiya (UP)</b>

1/2 kg maida
250 gm mawa
50 gm almonds
50 gm pistachios
1 tsp cardamom powder
100 gm sugar
few saffron leaves
50 gm ghee

1) In mawa, add chopped almonds, pistachios, cardamom powder, castor sugar and saffron. Mix well. Roast it lightly in a pan, on low flame. This is the filling for the gujiya.
2) Make soft dough out of maida and 50 gm ghee.
3) Divide the dough into balls and roll each ball into a small chappati,
about 4 inches in diameter.
4) Fill a tbsp. of the mixture in this chappati.
5) Moisten the edges of the chappati and fold one side onto the other.
6) Fry in ghee till it is golden brown in colour.
8) Make sugar syrup out of the 750 gm sugar and water. Pour over the
gujiyas. (optional)
9) Cover with silver foil

<b>Thandai (UP)</b>

1 and a 1/2 litres water
1 and 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup milk
1 tbsp. almonds
1 tbsp. watermelon or papaya seeds
1/2 tbsp. poppy seeds
1/2 tbsp. saunf (aniseed)
1/2 tsp. cardamom powder
1/2 tsp. rose water (optional)
1 tsp. peppercorns whole
1/4 cup dried or fresh rose petals

1) Soak sugar in 1/2 litre of water. Keep aside.
2) Wash all the dry ingredients, except cardamom.
3) Soak in 2 cups of water. Keep aside. Allow all soaked items to stand for at least 2 hours.
4) Grind all soaked ingredients to a very fine paste. Use a stone grinder if
5) When the paste is very fine, mix the remaining water.
6) Place a strong muslin strainer over a large deep vessel. Or tie a strong
muslin cloth over rim of vessel and use to strain.
7) Put the paste in this strainer and press with the back of the palms,
collecting the liquid into the vessel.
8) Add the remaining water, a little at a time, to get more liquid.
9) Pour back some of the extract and press once again.
10) Repeat this process till the residue becomes dry and husk like.
11) Add milk, sugar, cardamom powder and rosewater to the extracted liquid.
12) Boil the milk, and then chill for two hours.

<b>Bhang ke Pakore (Rajasthan)</b>

200 gm cauliflower
200 gm potatoes
150 gm onions
200 gm brinjal
100 gm spinach
Oil to deep fry
For the Batter:
250 gm besan
2 gm soda bicarb
Salt to taste
5 gm ajwain
5 gm pomegranate seed powder
10 gm bhang seed powder

1) Peel and wash all the vegetables.
2) For the batter, sieve gram flour, soda bicarb and salt together. Add
ajwain, red chilli powder, pomegranate seed powder and bhang seed powder. Add enough water to make a thick batter.
3) Dip the vegetables in the batter and deep fry on medium flame until light golden.
Where in US can one find bhang seeds.. <!--emo&Sad--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/sad.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='sad.gif' /><!--endemo-->
Check local Indian grocery store, ask owner. <!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->
A Maharashtrian/Konkani favorite during Holi is <i>Puran Poli</i>

Puran Poli
300 gm - Channa dal (yellow gram)
300 gm - Jaggery
1 tsp - Cardamom powder
150 gm - Plain flour
Warm water

Boil dal in plenty of water for 10 to 15 minutes.
Drain it and grate the dal to a crude paste.
Mash jaggery well with dal.
Cook the mixture in a heavy saucepan while stirring continuously until a soft lump is formed.
Keep it aside to cool.
Knead flour with 1 tbsp ghee and flour, adding enough water, to a soft dough.
Take a small ball of dough and roll into a thick small chapatti.
Put the mixture as a filling in centre and seal the roll.
Reroll it gently and roast on warm griddle till golden brown on both sides.
<b>Serve hot and apply a tsp of ghee </b>on it before serving.
Makes 7to 8 puranpolis.

Or you can take the easy way out and look up Puran poli from Deep foods in frozen section of the local desi store.
<!--QuoteBegin-rajesh_g+Mar 17 2005, 11:55 AM-->QUOTE(rajesh_g @ Mar 17 2005, 11:55 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin--> Where in US can one find bhang seeds.. <!--emo&Sad--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/sad.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='sad.gif' /><!--endemo--> <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Outside any High School. <!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<!--QuoteBegin-Rajita Rajvasishth+Dec 18 2004, 11:00 AM-->QUOTE(Rajita Rajvasishth @ Dec 18 2004, 11:00 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin--> Does Achaya' s book mention who invented the Papad and when? It seems to be evenly present across a wide part of India in many forms so it must have been invented early. The only other people I have seen having something vaguely like Papad are the Chinese. Actually what they have is more like fried sago fritters. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

They are pork rinds...
This is wild.


<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Indians don't like to cook anymore.
By Indrajit Basu
UPI Business Correspondent

Calcutta, India, Mar. 24 (UPI) -- Ready-to-eat Indian curries and food that were unheard of even a few years back are fast emerging as the new magic words in Indians kitchen as the 15-year old globalization effort is bringing rapid changes in the lifestyles of urban Indians. And going by the speed it has grown in recent years, this quick-fix solution is set to bring about a revolution in Indian kitchens.

Over the past two years, the ready to eat packed food market has grown from an almost insignificant number to touch a $20 million in revenues industry in 2004. And, considering the current growth rate, which is over 35 percent a year, revenues of this sector can easily touch $50 million in next 3 years.

"Indian lifestyle is undergoing a huge socio-economic change which is also getting reflected in food habits," said Ravi Naware, divisional chief executive of ITC Foods, a division one of India's largest fast-moving consumer goods company (FMCG) ITC Ltd. "In urban India, where time is more important than money, it is tough to return from office and spend hours on cooking that a typical Indian meals require. Also, there is a lack of skill of the young Indian to be able to cook."

Launched over a decade back in a different form, ready to eat food is not really new to India. But it failed to take off primarily due to a preference for freshly cooked food, and also, as says Naware, "because of the fact that retail outlets in India lacked adequate refrigeration facilities to store food which were available earlier."

However, with the availability of a new technology called Retort -- that packs the cooked food in a 4-layer package, which is then heated to 120 degrees Celsius to kill all living organisms thereby ensuring freshness through its much longer shelf-life -- the ready to eat food concept has become far more acceptable. In addition, say others, all ready-made food makers have started adopting Hazard Analysis Control Point Certification from the British Standard Laboratory, which signifies that factories making such products follow strict food and safety norms.

Nevertheless, the primary driving force behind the growth of ready to eat food is that the Indian mindset towards food is changing. Convenience is now the keyword.

"Ready-made food is not considered as extravagant expense any more," says J. Suresh, CEO and executive director, MTR Foods that claims to be the largest player in the segment with over 65 percent market share. "With disposable income going up, there is more money to spend. Earlier that was considered as a discretionary item but now spending in ready to eat food is a necessity."

In fact according to AC Neilsen ORG MARG, a top market research outfit, it is not just ready to eat food that is growing at a scorching pace; "eating habits are changing rapidly and even fast-food consumption is now a part of everyday life. Almost a third of urban Indians now claim to opt for fast food even for breakfast. Dinner, however, remains the most-preferred occasion for eating fast food", says Sarang Panchal executive director, AC Neilsen.

According to the findings of this latest online survey, urban Indians are amongst the top 10 most-frequent consumers of fast food across the globe. That survey has found that a huge 71 percent of urban Indians consume food from take-away restaurants once a month. Of these, 37 percent of the adult Indian population does so at least once a week. This makes India one of the top 10 countries amongst the 28 surveyed, in terms of frequency of fast-food consumption. "The incidence of fast-food consumption in urban India is also accelerating much faster than most people anticipated," said Panchal.

The results also revealed a more illuminating view attacking the fundamental preconception like "Indians are unlikely to eat anything other than traditional food on a regular basis."

"The growth of India's Food & Beverages market that outpaces the global average growth rate heralds the birth of an Indian palette that is infinitely adaptable, adventurous and untiring," said Sujit Das Munshi director South Asia, AC Nielsen.

But Das Munshi added that it is not just the changing Indian lifestyle that is driving Indians more and more towards ready-made food; "demographically, the pester-power of kids too has spurred sales of fast or impulse foods."

As local brands such as ITC's Aashirwad, and, Kitchens of India, MTR Food, Kohinoor Rice, Tasty Bites, and Currie Classic increasingly crowd the local retail store shelves, industry players add that the growth of ready-made food and curry pastes has also been scorching in overseas markets.

"We are experiencing explosive demand for ready-made Indian food from the overseas markets like U.S., UK Canada and Europe'" said Naware of ITC Foods. "The potential for exports are very good. This demand is not only from the non-resident Indian community but also from the local population who are increasingly getting exposed to Indian cuisine through Indians living there, and also through their travels. In fact I came across a projection recently, which says that by 2020 no American will cook starting from basic ingredients all the way. They will either use ready to cook or ready to eat food."

India exported about $7 million of ready-made Indian food in 2004, which is growing at around 20 percent a year.

The snowballing retail revolution aimed at India's 300 million strong middle class has created a market for imported fast foods as well, say industry players, adding that they see an explosive opportunity for foreign players in the country's fast food segment.

"Down the road, I can see not only pizzas and burgers and fizzy drink but also branded Sushi, Vietnamese soup, Lebanese doner kebabs and Thai food-in-bowls to join our Mughlai and dosas in retail shelves," said Arvind Nair a food industry professional.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
For Bay Area and LA members. There is an Indian restaraunt on I-5 off the Buttonwillow/McKittrick exit just before Bakersfield called "Taste of India". Its run by a sardar who cooks to order and gives a modern dhabha feeling. His USP is Indian American children for whom the menu item is free if they dont like the item. Try to patronize him on your way to LA or back.
Havent been on 5 for few months now but most friends go there on their trips up and down california. They all say the same thing. Gives them a nice dhaba feeling -> nothing more but atleast a chai works out great.. <!--emo&Smile--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='smile.gif' /><!--endemo-->


BTW what are the common restaurant names on desi highways in your parts of India ? I think its Janpath in case of Guj - most owned by sardars, most provide svadisht punjabi food.. <!--emo&Smile--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='smile.gif' /><!--endemo-->
Last Sunday I had Idli and Sambhar in Hindu Temple. I think served and prepared by people originally from Tamil Nadu.
I need recipe of Sambhar (home made type).
Mudy, Will give you when we meet.
Buddhism and Vegetarianism
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->As with many ethical issues, it's a question of interpretation. The Buddha ate meat and therefore was not a vegetarian. Indeed, <b>it is thought that he died from food poisoning after eating contaminated pork</b>. However, he advised that meat should only be eaten when it was not seen, heard or suspected that the animal had been specifically killed for the monk's consumption. In Buddhism, therefore, meat is not something that is forbidden. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Is this true?
At least it is widely believed by present day Buddhists. I believe he made a distinction between eating meat and killing an animal. I would think that he meant that if there is no known corelation between its death and your consumption then there is no harm in eating it. This is an attitude that I personally take. But this can be stretched a bit too far as it is for example in present day Sri Lanka.

Buddhism and vegetarianism

Halibut on White House menu for Dr Singh

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Dinner itself is a gourmet affair, starting off with chilled asparagus soup and lemon crème, to be accompanied with a Chappellet Chardonnay 'Napa Valley' 2003.

The entrée will have a vegetarian and non-vegetarian selection: Pan-roasted Halibut, Ginger-Carrot Butter, Basmati Rice with Pistachios and Currants, Herbed Summer Vegetables, Trio of Celery Hearts, Leaves and Roots. All of this will be washed down with a Hartford Court Pinot Noir 'Arrendell' 2002.

This will be followed by a salad of Bibb lettuces with citrus vinaigrette, while lotus blossom, mango, chocolate-cardamom and cashew ice creams will bring up the dessert, along with a Mer Soleil 'Late' 2001.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>How to get a high protein veggie diet</b>

Many of us Hindus are vegetarian. This is often an expression of our faith and our outlook towards life. A vegetarian diet may offer several important health advantages. However there have been concerns about whether vegetarians get enough protein. With an ever increasing number of people taking up weights or participating in other types of exercise that increase protein requirements, the pointers in this article are sure to come in useful to many. With a bit of know how, there is no reason why a veggie can’t build an impressive physique. Knowledge is the key.

Protein is of course the key building block for many of the body’s tissues, including muscle. Protein is composed of different types of amino acids. Out of these, eight are termed “essential amino acids”. It is vital that the dietary protein contains plenty of these. The problem is that while most animal sources contain all of the essential amino acids, most vegetable sources do not. But don’t panic…

First of all, dairy protein is a good source of all the essential amino acids. It can therefore be called a “complete protein”. Milk, yoghurt and cheese should form an important part of any healthy vegetarian diet, more so for somebody who’s trying to build up. They can contain a lot of fat. To get around this, you can switch to reduced fat varieties which are now quite widely available.

The only natural vegetable food that is a complete protein is soy. Cereals (such as wheat, corn or rice) are quite rich in protein, but miss one of the essential amino acids (lysine). Beans (of all types, including peas) are also not a complete source of protein, but are great sources of lysine, as well as being very rich in protein overall. The implication of this is that if you eat a cereal with any kind of bean, you have a complete source of protein, even though individually they are not complete. This combination has been used to good effect by many a fitness enthusiast. From the point of view of protein, peanuts are classified in the same category as beans, while all other nuts are classified in the same category as cereals. Some other vegetables such as broccoli and spinach are reasonable protein sources, and can be used to boost up the protein content of a meal, provided that a complete source of protein is otherwise present. Veggie burgers have variable amounts of protein, depending on what was used to make them. The “meat-substitute” ones are usually quite high in protein.

It is crucial for someone who is doing intensive weight training to get complete protein in every single meal. There are different ways to ensure this. One of these is to use intelligent food combinations. For example beans on toast is a protein rich combination, providing all the essential amino acids. Other “intelligent combinations” include rice and dhal, chapattis with any kind of Indian dish that contains beans, peanut butter sandwiches and many others.

Alternatively, make sure that a dairy product (not including butter, ghee and cream - these have had virtually all protein removed) is present. Cereal and milk, cottage cheese with salad, jacket potato with cheese, and even simply pizza are all good meals (or snacks) in terms of protein. Even having a pot of fruit yoghurt at the end of a meal will ensure that the meal has at least some complete protein source. Be warned - avoid eating chips alone as an entire meal. They provide little worthwhile nutrition of any kind.

For a person who really wants to build up, at least four of five meals or even six meals a day may be required. Some of these can be snacks (even just a large glass of milk). Try your best to get some protein at breakfast. Finally, a word on protein supplements. They will definitely come in useful if you are trying to muscle up a lot, or if you for whatever reason can‘t eat properly. But for many people they will not be necessary, provided the advice in this article is followed.

(COPYRIGHT - Shakti Marg Hindu Movement UK)
I think it's Parsi New Year today. Not 100% sure though. Nevertheless, here's link to one of my favorite sweets: DAR NI PORI
It's kind of pastry with sweet stuffing.

Parsi Cuisine
Today is Rakhi.
<!--QuoteBegin-Mudy+Aug 19 2005, 05:07 PM-->QUOTE(Mudy @ Aug 19 2005, 05:07 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin--> Today is Rakhi. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<!--emo&:guitar--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/guitar.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='guitar.gif' /><!--endemo-->
Rakshabandhan Cooking

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