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Curry Leaf Chutney (Karuveppilai Podi)

Curry leaves contain compounds that function as antioxidants that play an essential role in keeping your body healthy and free from disease. Antioxidants remove potentially harmful free radicals and suppress oxidative stress, a condition that’s associated with chronic disease development. They may help improve the fighting power of the body against cancer cells, as well as reduce the risk of getting heart disease and help improve the condition of the brain and its neurological system. Most importantly, it is said to be great for the growth of hair and to prevent graying. 🙂

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Haadgyachya Fulanchi Bhaji (Haadga or Heta Flower Sabji)

This is a wild flower that’s a delicacy in rural India and often flowers in the month of February and sometimes in August or September. It’s also known as Agastya or Agathi in Ayurveda and the botanical name is Sesbania grandiflora.

According to Ayurveda, it has many medicinal properties and the leaves of this tree have been used in traditional medicine since ancient times. The pod, young flowers and seeds are all edible and are popular in traditional cuisines especially in rural areas. The flowers and leaves are rich in vitamins and minerals and are said to have anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antipyretic effects. They are popular for their highly nutrient qualities, which include high protein and very high calcium content. Different parts of the tree are also said to contain properties that help treat diarrhoea, dysentery, night blindness, cataract, digestive disorders and even cancers.

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Kasai (Kashai, Kadha) Warm Beverage

Coriander seeds are fragrant and rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. They’re used very often in curries and other traditional Indian dishes in the powdered form. They are believed to have many health benefits including helping to lower blood sugar levels because of its diuretic property and reduce blood sugar levels by increasing enzyme activity in the body. In fact, coriander seeds should be used with caution as it has been observed they reduce blood pressure in a very short time and to a great extent. The vitamin K present in them is said to help prevent osteoporosis and support heart health. The antioxidants in coriander seeds may help reduce the risk of some cancers as well as slow the aging process. The antimicrobial compounds in them may help fight infections, and the anti-inflammatory properties they have may promote brain, skin, and digestive health.

Cumin seeds, like coriander seeds, are rich in vitamins, minerals (especially iron), antioxidants and antimicrobial/antibacterial compounds. Cumin seeds have been used to treat digestive problems traditionally and they have almost the same health benefits as coriander seeds.

Fennel seeds also have more or less the same properties. They are specially used as a mouth freshener after meals traditionally because they help reduce bad breath. This is because of the specific aromatic essential oil in them that has antibacterial properties.

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Alsi ki Chutney with Sesame Seeds (Flaxseed Chutney)

Flax seeds are tiny powerhouses of nutrition well known for their high content of omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), an essential fatty acid which means that your body cannot produce it and so you need to obtain it from the food you eat. It is important to grind the seeds before eating them as the oil is locked up inside the fibrous structure of the seed and it cannot be released when eaten whole.

Flax seeds also have high amounts of protein as well as soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber helps regulate blood sugar and cholesterol levels. It also promotes digestive health by feeding your beneficial gut bacteria. When mixed with water this soluble fiber becomes very thick and combined with the insoluble fiber content, flax seeds become a natural laxative, promoting good bowel movement, preventing constipation, and reducing your risk of diabetes. It’s recommended to drink plenty of water when eating these seeds because of their high fiber content. For people who are not used to eating a lot of fiber, incorporating flax seeds too quickly can cause mild digestive problems. These include bloating, gas, abdominal pain, and nausea. Chutneys are a great way to avoiding these problems as they are eaten along with a lot of other vegetables and pulses in our traditional Indian meals.

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Ansa Phansachi Bhaji

Fruits are a great source of energy and nutrients like vitamins and minerals. Additionally, fruits supply dietary fiber, which may help lower the incidence of cardiovascular disease and reduce unnecessary weight gain. Fruits are a source of phytochemicals that function as antioxidants, phytoestrogens, and anti-inflammatory agents and support protective mechanisms for the body. Coconut is a great source of natural fats and lots of fiber. Cooking fruits, or vegetables for that matter, causes the loss of a great amount of water-soluble vitamins, and the longer a food is cooked, the greater the loss of nutrients. Raw foods are more nutritious than cooked foods because enzymes are also destroyed in the cooking process. Enzymes are heat sensitive and deactivate easily when exposed to high temperatures. So, it’s best to eat fruit uncooked and in its natural form, but we can always enjoy a traditional food once in a while.

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Raw Mango Kadhi

Raw mango is available for almost 5 to 7 months of the year and is a very versatile ingredient. It is used in preserves, chaats, chutneys, main dishes, and beverages. It is high in vitamin C, calcium, magnesium which is useful for releasing toxins from the body. Raw mangoes are also high in niacin, which helps boost cardiovascular health.

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Kairi (Raw/Green Mango) Chutney

Kairi (raw/green) mango comes in different levels of sourness and is available for almost 6 to 8 months of the year. It is a very versatile ingredient. used in pickles, preserves, chaats, chutneys, main dishes, and beverages. It is high in vitamin C, calcium, and magnesium which are great to detoxify the body. Raw mangoes are also high in niacin, which helps boost cardiovascular health.

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Upma with Vegetables

Wheat has been used in various forms, especially ground roughly or fine for centuries. Some people find it difficult to digest wheat because of the gluten in it. Wheat is easier to digest when eaten with a lot of vegetables that contain the fibre. Wheat contains relatively high amounts of protein, dietary fiber, carbohydrates and minerals like calcium. It also contains micronutrients like magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and B vitamins. Wheat kernels have three parts: the bran (outer layer), the germ (core of the kernel), and the endosperm (starchy middle layer). White flour is made by removing the bran and the germ leaving only the endosperm which contains only protein, carbohydrates, and a small number of B vitamins and minerals. The bran and germ layers that are removed are rich in fiber, B vitamins, antioxidants, phytochemicals, and minerals like iron, copper, zinc, and magnesium. Therefore, it is best to eat whole wheat than refined flour/maida as well as eat it with a lot of vegetables.

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Allum Chutney with Tomatoes (Ginger Tomato Chutney)

Tomatoes are a versatile ingredient and are rich in fiber and other nutrients like vit C and lycopene. Tomatoes grown with heritage seeds are tastier and more nutritious. In fact, the tastier the tomatoes, the more the nutrition. Tomatoes have an anti-inflammatory effect that protects muscles and may help athletes recover after exercise.

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Alsi ki Chutney with Coconut (Flaxseed Chutney)

Flax seeds are rich in the essential omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Flax seeds are usually ground before eating them to release the oil locked up inside the fibrous structure of the seed and which cannot be released when eaten whole.

Flax seeds also have high amounts of protein as well as soluble and insoluble fiber, which help regulate blood sugar and cholesterol levels and promote digestive health by providing the required food for beneficial gut bacteria. Flaxseed powder is often used to replace egg for its binding quality when mixed with water, and so it is recommended to drink plenty of water when one eats flax seeds. The proportion is usually 3 parts of water to 1 part of flax seed powder. This mixture is also a natural laxative. Chutneys are a great way to enhancing the variety of our traditional Indian meal.

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