The Vegetarian Way
The Key to Health and
Gujarati: KhusKhus; Hindi: Kaskash
Description: Tiny white seeds of the poppy plant are cultivated for its
quality to be used as a spice or as opium In Europe the seeds which are
cultivated for the purpose of opium are grayish blue in color and known
as �Maw Seeds.�
Uses: Poppy seeds are used as one of the ingredients in various cooking
and as toppings for breads, buns, rolls and cookies. The young poppy
plant is sometimes eaten like lettuce, In Iran it is grown at home in
pots and is good for cattle feed. The opium poppy is used as a sedative,
or for intoxicating drink. It has a morphine property which is
successfully used in medicines.
Gujarati: Kesar; Hindi: Zaffran, Kesar
Description: Saffron, popularly called� Vegetable Gold,� consists opf
dry, orangecolored stigmas of crocus Sativus plant having attractive
purple flowers. The flowers are picked every morning before noon,
cleaned and stigmas and style separated and then dried. The stigmas are
called saffron. This process involves a lot opf time, labor and the
yield is small. Time is probably the reason for the high price of
Uses: The stigmas are the dried orange-colored condiment used in rice,
breads and cookies. It is also used as coloring, flavoring agent. Its
sweet heavenly aromatic fragrance is fit for exotic dishe3s and
delicacies. Ayurvedic and Unani systems of medicine in India use
saffron as a stimulant, for creating heat and warmth in the body and for
helping urinary problems.
Indian Cassia Lignea
Gujarati: Tamala patra: Hindi: Tejpat
Description: A moderate-sized evergreen tree, whose leaves are ready for
harvesting when the tree is 10 years old. The tree continues to bear
the leaves for 100 years. Cassia and cinnamon are very similar when
ground into powder. Both are the dried inner layers opf branches of
evergreen tropical; trees. But cassia is considered to be inferior top
cinnamon. Indian cassia lignea are the leaves of the cassia bark tree.
Uses: The leaves are used as a spice as the Europeans use bay leaves in
cooking. The are carminative and are also used in diarrhea. The leaves
are aromatic and have a very close fragrance top cinnamon.
Gujarati: Haldar; Hindi: Haldi
Description: Turmeric is the dried underground swollen stem of
zingiberaceous plant. It is one of the most ancient and important
spices of Indian as it is used extensively by all. Its attractive
yellow color is due to curcuma pigmentation. The powder of turmeric is
derived after the stem is boiled, drained, dried in the sun, cleaned,
polished and then pounded into powder.
Uses: Culinary art would be incomplete without the use of turmeric in
preparation of various dishes. Turmeric is a unique plant product,
having the attributes of a spice of flavorant, a colorful yellow dye, a
cosmetic, and a medicine. It is very popularly used in Indian medicine
as a blood-purifier and a skin cleanser, as an antiseptic,. A
carminative and is very good for sore throats due to cough and cold. It
is regarded as very sacred in Hindu marriage ceremonies.
Gujarati: vanilla; Hindi: Vanilla
Description: Vanilla was first introduced into India around the 18 the
century. Vanilla pods or beans are fruits of climbing orchid. The best
quality of Vanilla pods are the one�s which are dark brown in color with
sweet aroma and without mildew and spots.
Uses: vanilla is very popularly used as food flavorant and in perfumes.
Chocolates, cookies, cakes,. Ice creams, drinks and candies would taste
bland and dull without vanilla. Vanilla extract is widely used in every
home. So it is the most wanted flavorant among the cooks. But it has
no medicinal properties except masking odor of cough syrups and
Onion and Garlic
Onion and garlic has since long
been recognized all over the world as a valuable condiment for food and
a popular remedy for various ailments. In India, China and Egypt it has
gained popularity as a folk medicine for over thousands of years.
According to the Unani and
Ayurveda (science of life) systems, onion is considered to have
antiseptic properties and useful in flatulence, dysentery, cold and
fever. It is used raw, cooked, baked or boiled.
On the other hand,. Gralic is
carminative and aids in digestion and absorption of food. It is also
very popular in the world of medicine, because of its antibiotic element
called �allin�. Its healing property and effectiveness against cholera
have been noticed since the 17th Century. Influence of
antibiotic property of gralic on malignant tumors has been found
useful. Garlic juice is used for various ailments of the stomach and as
ear drops in ear-ache. In cooking it is used extensively for flavoring
vegetables, salads, soups, beans, rice and many, many more dishes.
Thus there appears to be a
fundamental basis for the use of onion and garlic as medicine and for
its utilization as food ingredients.
It is interesting to note here,.
What Dr. J. S. Pruthi, the first Director of Agmark Laboratories,
ministry of Food and Agriculture, has to say about garlic, �because of
its highly curative properties, it has been described as derived from
Amrita or Ambrosia. The later prejudice against the use of garlic in
India, particularly among the Brahmins, appears to have originated from
its popularity with the foreign invaders. The prejudice became so
intense, that not only socio-religious writers like Manu deprecated its
use, but also the authors of medicine like Kashyapa discouraged it. The
recent scientific evidence about its several highly curative properties
clearly shows, that the old prejudice was not justified.�
Onion and garlic are not mentioned
in the recipes, because some religious traditions and beliefs do not use
them, and some people avoid them because of its strong flavor. But from
the health point of view they have their benefits as we have seen above.
Those who like onions and garlic in
their cooking can use them in the following recipes:
Dals and Soups
Mung Dal Delight
Five Lentil Mix
Onion and garlic, grind into paste
Lentils Onion and garlic, grind into
Spicy Carrot Soup
Onion, blend w/carrots in electric blender
Onion blend w/spinach in electric blender
Onion and garlic
Sauteed Eggplant with
Peas Onion and garlic
Spiced Zucchini with Tomatoes Onion
Cabbage and Chana Dal Delight Onion and
Spinach with Yogurt
Onion and garlic
Potato Peas Masala
Onion and garlic, grind into paste
Sweet N sour Vegetable
Dal and Rice with Vegetables Onion
Cream of wheat with
Vegetables and Spices
Savories and Snacks
Bean Sprout and Cabbage
Pressed Rice with Potatoes
Notes on Ingredients
Certain ingredients listed in this book are unique to Indian
cooking. These are described separately for the benefit of those not
familiar with them. They are available in Indian and American grocery
stores all over the country.
Agar Agar: It is a gelatin-like
product of a sea vegetable used for solidifying certain culture media or
used as thickening agent for puddings and custards. It has a natural
jelling ability so it is good for recipes that all for jelling or
gelatin. It is a perfect alternative to commercial; Jell-O or gelatin
made with animal products. Agar-Agar is also called �Kanten� or
�chinese gelatin� or �china grass.�
It is available in bars, flakes or
powder. The instructions on the package tell us how to use it. This
delicious gelatin that can be prepared with fruit juices and pieces of
fruit is a non-violent alternative.
Carob Powder: It is made from
carob-pods which are roasted and ground to produce a cocoa-like
substance. Carob powder is a chocolate-like powder, sweeter than cocoa
and has a pleasant flavor. Due to its caffeine-free quality, it is good
for children as well as adults. It is the best substitute for chocolate
for those who are allergic to chocolates.
Chick-Pea Flour: Also known as
�chana no loat� or �besan.� A good source of protein. In India,
garbanzo beans or chickpeas are known as chana. When the chana is
ground into flour, it is called Besan. This flour is used in the
preparation of Indian sweet dishes, pastries, pancakes, snacks and in
many vegetable dishes. Its nutty flavor makes any dull dish a delight.
Jaggery, Gur: King of brown
sugars, Jaggery is made from unrefined palm sugar and gur is made from
unrefined cane sugar, and available in the form of bars and sometimes in
large lumps. It is preferable to white sugar in many dishes. As it is
not sold in powder or granulated form it is hard to measure it like the
ordinary white sugar. As it is less sweet, one has to use one�s own
judgement and discretion when adjusting the quantities called for in the
recipes using white sugar.
Curry: Many people get mixed up
with �curry� and �curry powder� available in many Indian groceries.
Curry is a kind of gravy made from yogurt, cream, coconut milk and
ground spices. When vegetables are added to the sauce it is called
vegetable curry and sometimes instead of vegetable paneer is used and it
is called paneer curry. Curry powder is the mixture of the ground
spices, the spice proportions varying according to region of origin, and
is an ingredient of the curry dish.
Masala: Garam Masala: Mixture of
different spices. The term �garam� means hot or sharp and spicy,�masala�
means spices. It is used to pep up the food,. Or add an extra flavor to
dishes. There are many different recipes of garam masala varying from
one province to another. The recipe in this book comes from a small;
town of Gujarat State called Mangrol.
Garam Masala: � tablespoon ground cloves
ground white pepper
Mix all the spices together well. Store in
an airtight container to preserve freshness. Use as needed.
Green Masala: The following is a
recipe for green masala which can be hot and is used to add zip to
Green Masala: 12 fresh green chillies,
cut into 1� pieces (or
green banana peppers for not flavor
Or 4 sweet
banana peppers for milder flavor)
3-inch piece of ginger,
scraped and chopped
1 teaspoon salt
Put all above ingredients into a coffee
grinder or blender and grind into a coarse paste. �Green Masala� is now
ready and can be stored in a tightly sealed glass container in the
refrigerator for 15-20 days.
Milk Masala: 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
� teaspoon ground
� teaspoon ground
Put everything into a coffee grinder and
make into a coarse powder. Store in an airtight container in the
Tea Masala: (Chai Masala)
ground white pepper
Mix all the ingredients together thoroughly
and store in an airtight glass container.
Panch Puran: This is another
version of whole gram masala which can be prepared in quantities and
stored in airtight containers and used as required. This combination is
strong flavored and can be overpowering due to the mustard and fennel.
Panch Puran: 2 tablespoons yellow
black cumin seeds (kalonji)
Mix all the above ingredients together and
store in an airtight jar.
Paneer: Also known as china or
Indian cottage cheese. Its high content of protein increases its
nutritional value. Paneer, when pressed, is very much like tofu or soya
bean curd which can be substituted for paneer in many dishes. Paneer is
the outcome of curdled milk. It is used in many sweet dishes, in snacks
and combined with vegetables.
Paneer or Chhenna (soft cheese): 4 cups milk
Juice of 1 lemon
In a pot, bring the milk to a
boil. Lower the heat and add the lemon juice, stirring occasionally.
The milk will separate into cheese (paneer) and whey.
Tun off the heat and let the
milk stand for 15 minutes,. Covered. This will allow the milk to curdle
completely and allow the paneer to separate from the whey.
Now, line a large strainer
with two layers of cheesecloth and rest the strainer in a bowl; to
collect the whey. Put the curdled milk in the strainer. The whey will
pass through the strainer and the paneer will be collected in the
cheesecloth. Cover the paneer with the ends of the cheesecloth and put
some weight on it. Leave this for 2 to 3 hours.
Empty the paneer from the
cheesecloth and place in a bowl. Knead the paneer with your palm until
smooth and manageable. If you want to make cubes of paneer, do not
knead to paneer.
It the paneer is not to be used immediately
put in a container and refrigerates it. It will keep for 3 days. Use
the whey in dals or soups.
Dahi : Also known as curd or
yogurt. Yogurt is a wholesome food, fortified with calcium,. Protein
and riboflavin and widely used both by rich and poor. In India, yogurt
is considered to be one of the nectars of the earth. Long life and
yogurt have long been associated and it is said that it was used even
before the vedas (considered to be the oldest scriptures in India) were
written. Yogurt, therefore has been used for centuries. Considered to
be a �miracle� food, it is used by Indians in religious ceremonies; as a
medicine for curing stomach ailments as the effect of yogurt bacteria on
the digestive system is found to be very beneficial; and as cosmetic for
facial cleansing. The versatility of yogurt in cooking is amazing. It
can be used in desserts, dips, breads, soups, rice, salads, and
In this book there are several
recipes using yogurt and instructions on how to make delicious yogurt at
home is also included below. Once you learn how top make your own
yogurt,. You will never buy from the supermarket. In India, every
housewife makes her own yogurt daily thus sharing with her family the
joy of eating fresh, home-made yogurt every day. Let your family, too,
be a part of this joy.
1-quart whole Milk
2 tablespoons plain yogurt
Boil the milk in a saucepan
over low heat,. Stirring occasionally to avoid sticking at the bottom.
Remove from the heat and let sit cool until it is lukewarm.
With a fork, spread the yogurt
smoothly on the bottom of a small bowl. Add � cup of warm milk to the
yogurt and mix well until; smooth.
Add this yogurt/milk mixture
to the remaining milk. Mix thoroughly and empty the mixture into a
glass vessel or individual glass bowls and cover. Let it stand in a
warm place for 5 to 6 hours.
Serves 4 to 6 people.
Note: do not disturb the mixture
during incubation period. After the desired time, gently shake mixture
to see if it is set like jelly. If not firm, let it stand for one hour
more and check again. Refrigerate as soon as it is set. Remember to
take out 2 tablespoons of yogurt to be used as a �starter� culture for
the next batch. The culture keeps for two weeks in the refrigerator.
Ghee : When butter is heated to
allow the water content in it to evaporate and milk solids to settle
down, what remains is clarified butter called �ghee.� Ghee is used
extensively in Indian cuisine on chappatis, in vegetables, dals and all
the Indian sweets. Ghee is used in many Hindu religious ceremonies. It
can be purchased in the market and made at home. The homemade ghee has
a sweet fragrance and fresh smell to it. Ghee made from homemade butter
is even more delicious. Once you are used to homemade you will not
think of using the commercial product ever again.
Makkan: This is homemade butter
which is white and unsalted. Market butter is available for the last 50
to 60 years. Previously, each house would make their own butter to eat
with Indian breads. The leftover butter was eventually turned into
ghee. When children ate this fresh, unadulterated butter and ghee,
naturally they were big, healthy and strong.
Papads or Papadums: (Lentil
Four Crispy Wafers). Papads are everybody�s favorites-popular among
both grown-ups as well as children. Any festive lunch or dinner is
incomplete without papads. A party without papad is like food without
The taste of papads varies as
you travel in India, from the North to the south, from East to West and
depends on whether they are made from Udad or mug dals or whether rice,
Potato or sago flour or millet is used.
Available in packages and in
several; varieties in Indian grocery stores,. They can be either toasted
over an open fire or,. As is most often the case, deep fried in oil. It
is easy to fry them. The oil should be hot, the papads should then be
immersed into the hot oil one at a time and left their just long enough
top attain a golden color. Remove it immediately with tongs, holding it
against the sides of the pan so as to allow the oil to drain completely
and drop back into the pan. Do not brown them. Place on paper towels
while you prepare the rest of the papads one by one.
Papads are to Indians what
potato chips are top Westerners!
It is imperative that the meaning
of the various cooking terms in the recipes be made clear. A few of
these terms generally used are described below to help you follow the
recipes successfully and efficiently. Once a person becomes familiar
with the methods, much of the effort of cooking is eliminated and then
it becomes easy and fast.
Boiling: cooking food at boiling
point in sufficient liquid to cover. Food is said to be boiling when
the top of the liquid is covered with bubbles.
Baking: cooking food in the dry
heat of an oven. This method is used in cooking savories, cookies,
cakes, pies and vegetables, etc.
Blanching: means putting food in
boiling water for a few minutes top remove skin, e.g., pistachios,
almonds, tomatoes, etc.
Frying: cooking food in fat. When
one fries food in small quantity of fat it is called shallow frying and
when one fries food in a large quantity of fat it is called deep
frying. Here the term fat means vegetable fat, ghee (clarified butter)
Pressure-cooking: in very practical
and is the method popularly used in India for rice, beans and lentils.
Food is cooked in a special pot where the combination of high
temperatures and regulated pressure greatly reduces the cooking time
and, in the case of beans, lentils and dry peas, eliminates the presoak
step. Time method locks in the preserves the vitamins and preserves the
vitamins and nutritional; value of the foods.
Sauteing: to fry very lightly and
slowly in a small quantity of oil, butter or ghee. Tomatoes, green and
red peppers, zucchini and cauliflower are some of the vegetables that
can be prepared in this manner.
Simmering: cooking on low heat
after it is brought to the boil; once. It is generally used to cook
rice, soups, puddings and stews. Some vegetable dishes also require
Soaking: to 1 cup of dry beans ad
3 to 4 cups hot water. Boil for 2 minutes, then set aside for one hour
and then cook; OR let stand in 3 to 4 cups of cold water overnight.
Steaming: Cooking food in a double
boiler especially designed for this purpose. A double boiler has two
vessels. The food to be steamed is put into a smaller, covered vessel
containing boiling water. The double boiler is then placed on the
fire. The food is cooked in the steam that arises from the boiling
water. Nowadays, you can even buy a steam basket which is placed in a
vessel full of boiling water. Idlis, dhokalas and vegetables are cooked
in this way.
Stewing: cooking pulses,
vegetables, etc., in just sufficient liquid so that the food cooks in
its own juices. This is done slowly so that the flavors of the foods
and spices mingle together in an aromatic fragrance. In this method the
food becomes tender while retaining some of the gray. Fruit stews are
made in this way in sugar syrup.
Toasting: cooking spices, seeds
and some Indian bread over dry heat until it is brown and crisp.
Liquid Measures and Volumes:
3 tsp = 1 Tablespoon 1
Tbsp =1/2 fluid ounce (oz)
4 Tbsp = � cup 2
Tbsp = 1 fluid oz
5 1/3 Tbsp = 1/3 cup 4
Tbsp = 2 fluid oz
8 Tbsp = � cup 8
Tbsp = 4 fluid oz
16 Tbsp = 1 cup 16
Tbsp = 8 fluid oz or 1 cup
4 ups = 1 quart
2 quart = � gallon
4 quart = 1 gallon
4 oz = � pound
8 oz = � pound
12 oz = � pound
16 oz = 1 pound
1 tsp = 5 grams 1
oz = 28 grams
1 Tbsp = 15 grams 1 �
oz = 50 grams
2 Tbsp = 30 grams 3 �
oz = 100 grams
8 oz = 227 grams
1 pound = 45 kilograms
1 oz = 30 milliliters
1 cup = 236 milliliters
1 cup = 24 liter
1 quart = 96 liter
� cups = 1 liter