Bastardisation of Indian food

We Indians have perfectly managed to mess up really good and balanced cooking. I might even say we have bastardized it enough that we now think we have to eat non-Indian food to feel healthy. I am also a culprit of this movement and the more I read magazines about what to eat, the worse I feel. Let me try and explain this. I will explain this from a vegetarian’s point of view – sadly for you omnivores, that is the only view I have.

A balanced Indian meal has a breakfast, a lunch, an evening snack (called tiffin) and a dinner. Somewhere along, Indians managed to reduce it to 3 or less because everyone was following a busy schedule. When you get back to running, you hear this thing about how you are supposed to eat lesser quantities more often – well, that is what our ancestors told us and we deserted that.

Second, a meal is supposed to have a dal (lentils), some rice, veggies (more than one if possible), every now and then some ghee, buttermilk and/or yogurt (curd rice is king :)) and maybe a raita somewhere in the middle. This seems really balanced – lots of carbs and proteins with a bit of fat to absorb all the ingredients. The spices also have a lot of medicinal properties.

Well, we decided to do away with the lentils and just have more rice because we were too lazy to make dal. There goes a nice source of proteins. That also added to the carb intake and of course we all became overweight. The second bad development was the liberal use of oil – of course food tastes good if you cook it with a lot of oil. Instead of baking, frying became the norm. Frying kills a lot of the minerals present in food and increases the quantity of fat in the food. But of course, it tasted good and so we decided that it is the way to go. Fruits became rare because of the not so easy availability.

Now, as I read more magazines on running, the kinds of food you should eat is mentioned prominently. Everything you read about is something we were eating in Indian food (turmeric, ginger etc) and you start feeling guilty. Apparently dal and rice is an amazing combination for getting lots of proteins.

Instead of promoting good food, the Indian food we get in restaurants is downright pathetic. Everything is floating in oil and spiced with the wrong things. Forget the fact that the food sucks – it is also extremely unhealthy. So it is a double whammy when we go to Indian restaurants. There are some exceptions where the food tastes good. But never healthy.

I wish someone would come up with a good meal plan with just Indian food. Anyone who did nutrition in India – please help. Help!!! I can stop eating whole wheat bread every other day with peanut butter. Well that is not going to change but I can at least avoid the stupid things like bland pastas with marinara :(.

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9 Comments on “Bastardisation of Indian food”

  1. Anand Subramani Says:

    Please pass this on to the DUDES from Chicago!. I am sure you will get a very positive response 🙂

  2. Guppy Says:

    I definitely should :). Man it has been a while since I spoke to either dude. I should call them soon.

  3. catcharun Says:

    u left a couple of sentences hanging for us to fill:

    > Frying kills a lot of the minerals present in food and increases the .

    I am going with “violence”…makes sense that the murderous frying increases violence

    > But of course, it tasted good and so we decided that.
    so we decided that “frying would be the national cooking style”

    Part of the solution is to not be lazy and cook dal..and what are u complaining about? it’s not like you are cooking…wait, is there a subliminal message hidden in that post for your sig. other..if there is, i should warn you that it is not very subtle

  4. Guppy Says:

    No no. This has no message. I should make that really clear before I get into any trouble. She was kind of bugged about the post yesterday because she felt I was insinuating her. Of course, that was not my intent.

    I should probably announce to the world that my wife makes dal :).

  5. hyps Says:

    mani – thanks for remembering us..

    “Instead of promoting good food, the Indian food we get in restaurants is downright pathetic.”…
    –kindly make it a point to note some significant exceptions to your rule, else you may invokng peter’s wrath..

    and catch- machan where’s the invite..pls dont take revenge like this 😉
    also, i think the subliminal message would be to prospective maplais, about preparing themselves for cooking regularly 🙂
    …..hehe just kidding dude..

    as arbonius says … “be indian, eat indian”

  6. hyps Says:

    can u remove moderation control for blog comments? is it really worth it..

  7. Guppy Says:

    I am not sure I can remove the moderation comment for the blogs. Let me give it a shot. If you use the same email address, you will not need moderation the second time – so leave more comments :).

    I want to eat Indian food da – it is just that I still think the food in the Indian restaurants are devoid of any nutrients :). I am not sure I agree to the exception rule – like I noted above some do server tasty food but again not too healthy :).

  8. hyps Says:

    more comments..test..test 🙂

  9. hyps Says:

    ok it worked perfectly..nice..

    also, wow…i posted my 2nd comment quickly and this is what I saw

    “You are posting comments too quickly. Slow down.” ..HARHARHAR …amazing and atrocious…

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