Friday, July 12, 2013

Power to the people

Breakfast is a meal strongly advocated for good health. 

The Goan Culinary Club has made it an agenda for this month. Yes starred hotels are promoting the concept of the ‘power breakfasts’ a good start to begin your day well, so we decided to explore this aspect in terms of our local  Goan food preparations… do we have preparations to start the day well? 

Ms Anita Salatry TV host and author was invited to share a few ‘old world’ preparations of the days of yore. And as co founder Odette Mascarenhas with her years of experience in the hotel industry remembered, the ‘power breakfasts’ at the Shamiana hotel in Mumbai Taj, she was intrigued to note that we Goans had our very own ‘power breakfasts’ designed in our ancestors kitchens.

So what do power breakfasts promote….high protein, sugar free and low carbohydrate menus’ through egg white omelets, muesli, skimmed milk yoghurt with sprouts, channa, lentils, lettuce, rock salt used in all preparations and steamed or roasted recipes.

Compare that to the recipes shared by Ms Salatry …Kandyachi bhakri (roasted on tawa great to maintain the cholesterol preparations), Ukdya Tandlache polle (nutritious – the unpolished rice giving great fiber content and vitamins), Gavanche polle (wheat dosa for minerals and vitamins), Nasnyache polle (nutritious and healthy), and sweets to like Tavsalli (cucumbers great for complexion and a natural cleaner), Purnachi nevri (stuffed with channa dal) high in protein and vitamin content. No sugar used...jaggery was king and coconut too.
And it was not only the Hindu Goan kitchens that made preparations so rich in health. 

Participation by Club members as Ms Sunita Rodrigues project director took over, gave note to the fact. Says Sylvester D’Souza of Sheela’s a well known Khanavat styled restaurant...’In our homes the same Tandullache Bhakri was made without using chilies or spices but with coconut shavings’. Chef Peter Fernandes of O Coqueiro spoke about his own recollection of a rich type of porridge made of Nacchni (millet).  So one could have a variety too – the polle or the porridge.

Where have all the preparations gone, are they slowly dying in the homes too? Our ancestors lived to a ripe old age often crossing the century mark, they were able to walk great distances and the doctors were rarely called on ‘visits’ – maybe the social ones only. Can our starred hotels recreate the richness of the past? The power that these breakfasts gave to the people… History has its own way of proving ‘lifestyles’ were right.
This meeting was graciously hosted by our Culinary member Hotel Fidalgo. The spread of goodies ranged from healthy old time breakfast fare to modern fried delicacies showcased by our members of the  Goan Culinary Club.

No comments: