how to use bulbs as vegetables
16 September 2020

Kshemakutuhalam chapter 8,part 21 – good food, healthy life…

After having described about the stems, author finds it appropriate to explain about the bulbs used as vegetable in cooking … Let us have a look on some very popular bulbs used in medieval India, their dishes and their properties …

1. Kadali kanda – the bulb of plantain is cut into small pieces, steamed and cooked in ghee containing asafoetida.. It is also sprinkled with rock salt and black pepper powder.. this is a very good appetizer.. As such, the kanda of kadali is very cold in potency and hence best used in people suffering from acidity issues, burning sensation anywhere in the body… It improves taste as well.. This is a vegetable which is generally used in most parts of india..

2. Surana kanda – Surana is one such vegetable which is described in detail by the author… There are various recipes which are dedicated to Surana, thus showcasing it’s immense popularity and/or health benefits…

Author says that surana is very ‘roudra’, meaning of which can be taken as teekshna… So, to reduce that sharp nature of surana a begining procedure is told which is to be done before any recipe.. In this, a decoction of surana is done with water or with any sour liquid like kanjika… It is also anointed with powder of some sour leaf like that of tamarind…

Surana which has already undergone the above said procedure is smeared with paste of a mixture of water containing asafoetida and turmeric… It is then fried with sesame oil and rock salt is added.. The dish gets completed with the addition of black pepper powder for flavouring and spicing the dish.. This dish is a good appetizer..

Bulb of surana is cleaned from its mud and is covered with a layer of mud.. it is cooked under fire from cow dung fuel… When turned soft, it’s skin is removed, smashed and fried in oil with salt, cumin seeds, lemon juice, fresh ginger… This preperation is good for people with anaemia and is also a good appetizer..

There is another recipe of surana where it’s pieces are fried in mustard oil. When done, it is added with a sour juice like that of tamarind extract. It is added with veshavara and dried… Here ‘drying’ may refer to frying it to make it dry and not exactly under the sun (?)..

Surana in general is very light for digestion, it improves digestion too . It is dry in nature. It is good diet for people suffering from haemorrhoids and cough..

3. Mrunala kanda – The tender lotus stems are plucked from water sources. It is cut into small pieces… Author just says that it can cooked in the method of broths. Lotus is very cold in potency, it is light for digestion.. it is astringent and sweet in taste.. It decreases pitta but increases kapha and vata.. we have to be careful to use it because it may cause bloating in the abdomen..

Recipes related to plant products come to an end here… The remaining part of the chapter is related to general discussions on vegetables.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: