24 March 2020

Kshemakutuhalam chapter 6, part 8 – good food, healthy life

Well, this chapter has been so extensive and has given a lot of insights about the medieval indian cuisines, specially related to meat/non-vegetarian catogery. In the present article, we get some very interesting read about many such interesting recipes…

1. If we analyse all the recipes which are told here, we can identify some commonly used spices for meat. They are, asafoetida, cumin, pepper, turmeric,ginger, tamarind, pomogranate with rock salt…. Most of these spices, tend to make meat, which is otherwise heavy for digestion into better for digestion. So, it is very much required to follow these protocols.

2. Broths – many varieties of broths are explained in the next few versus which can be used for preparing many other recipies out of it … Some examples are pattaala broth, Dhananjaya broth, broth from gauda country etc etc… All these come with different qualities and tastes…

3. The mighty samosa – yes, you heard it right. Samosa has been a very famous delicacy among the Indian snacks. Perhaps all of us have felt that it would be some recent invention. But no, it has been prepared way back even in 16th century too… ( Same refers to soup and tandoor preperations). At first, meat fillings have to be kept ready. For this, meat has to be cut into small pieces, boiled in water. Later, it has to fried in ghee along with asafoetida, jeera, fresh ginger, cardamom and rock-salt. Meat this fried with spices is ready as fillings for samosa… Now flour paste has to be spread, filled with the above fillings, edges sealed and fried in ghee… This according to the author kshema Sharma is called samosa and is one the best delicacies of the time.. he says that it imparts good strength to the individual and is an aphrodisiac….

4. White coloured curry/broth – coming to the subsequent versus author further describes a type of curry which can be called a broth as well… He says, here, buttermilk, besan, coriander and asafoetida are taken to which properly boiled meat balls are placed. This mixture is again cooked well with ginger and salt. Once, it is done, cardomom has to be added and removed from the flame. This has to be strained and white curry/broth this gets ready… Similarly there is description of yellow broth ( made with turmeric or saffron), green broth ( with betel leaf), red broth etc..

5. Meat made with coal – in the next couple of shlokas, author describes how boiled meat must be cut into pieces, must be placed one after the other like beads, smeared with mixture of buttermilk, salt, ginger and asafoetida, later dry fried in charcoal without smoke… It is said that this type of preperation is light for digestion …

This chapter has been giving a very exhaustive description of various methods of cooking non vegetarian diet. Really, awestruck with the clarity and delicate cuisine prepared by Indian scholars…

Happy time!!!! Stay tuned !!!!

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