13 April 2020

Kshemakutuhalam chapter 6, part 10 – good food, healthy life.

The description of non – vegetarian recipes told here are certainly one of its kind… May be not followed anywhere today. But, I think the combination of spices told here for all preperations would be an amazing try… So, moving on let’s explore something interesting …

1. Mamsendari – this is a kind of meat preperation made of smashed meat mixed with masoora ( can be taken as the paste of masur daal) which is covered with leaves and steamed. This must have been given a dressing of black pepper, oil/ghee, salt or nay such combination of spicy powder. Author says that, this recipe is heavy for digestion, owing to meat and lentils, thus it decreases vata.

2. Ksheeramrutam – this word is literally translated as milk – nector (ksheeramrutam). Here, meat is first boiled in water and ghee. After being soft and well-cooked, dry ginger powder is added to it. To this, add milk which is mixed with sugar and many fragrant substances (which are not mentioned clearly, but left to the intellect of the cook). Author says that this is called by the name “amrutam” because of its ambrosia kind of properties.. it is said to be neither too dry nor too liquid. Because of its unique combination, it decreases both vata and pitta.

3. Later few versus are dedicated to the description of how head,foot,intestines of an animal must be cooked.

4. Meat with curds and mustard – doesn’t possess a definite name, but in this recipe, meat is first steamed in buttermilk and water. Then it is fried in ghee ( though hasn’t specified about deep or shallow fry). Later it is sprinkled with spices and salt. This is mixed in curds and black mustard (may be in the form of powder/seasoning). This recipe, decreases vata and kapha. It increases pitta when used too much. Helps digestion.

5. Brinjal stuffed with meat – here a clean brinjal has to be taken. It has to be stuffed with smashed and cooked meat. The opening has to be sealed with a paste of flour and must be prepared in the form of broth (described in previous articles). According to the author, this preperation is nutritious, gives strength.

6. Later, author tells about methods of cooking birds meat and also of aquatic animals… But meat of aquatic animals is generally heavy for digestion unlike that of animals from arid region.

7. Later on, description of cooking different birds like pigeon, peacocks etc are told. Their respective qualities too are beautifully mentioned.

8. In the last part of the chapter, author tells about the qualities of desirable and undesirable meats. Eg- meat of recently killed animals must be taken and is very condusive to health. Whereas, meat of pregnant or aborted animals must never be taken. Animals which have died of any disease must never be touched.

9. Likewise, eggs of all birds are heavy for digestion. Birds which live near aquatic areas and animals/birds which eat heavy animals must never be taken. And also, animals or birds which are physically active would be best for consumption.

10. Author concludes the chapter by telling that, any recipe which is prepared by an excellent cook, always gives good health…

Hope u have enjoyed reading sixth chapter of this book, which is most extensive on description of non -vegetarian recipes. Next is the chapter on fish dishes..

Stay tuned .. happy time !!!!

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