Food for the mind and the body: Project 365/6 [Jan. 14, 2012]

Food for thought: Poor little rich kids

Malnourishment is normally associated with poverty and inadequate access to food and other resources. However, according to a recent study by nutritionists and paediatricians, rich children with unlimited access to calorie-rich food such as pizzas and burgers may be equally at risk. These children get an ‘overdose’ of carbohydrates and fats, but are deprived of vital nutrients such as calcium, Vitamin D and Vitamin B12.  [Citizen’s Alliance against Malnutrition and Indian Dietician Association in an article by Ganesh N in ‘The New Indian Express,’ Jan. 14, 2012].

Food for the palate: Groundnut/ Peanut Menthya kuzhambu  [a cross between a spicy soup and a hot  sauce]

Soak a small lime-sized ball of tamarind in about 2 ounces of water and keep aside. Heat a teaspoon of oil in a pan, splutter mustard. Fry a fistful of groundnuts till crisp, and add a pinch of asafoetida, a few curry leaves pinched into bits, and about 4 green chillis, slit.  Fry for a second, add a teaspoon of gram flour to the pan, fry for another second, squeeze tarmarind and add water. Add 2 more ounces of water to the tamarind, squeeze out the pulp till done, and add the tarmarind water to the pan. Add a teaspoon of rasam powder [see earlier post for preparation or buy off the shelf] and 1/2 a teaspoon of red chilli powder. Add a 1/2 inch piece of jaggery, salt to taste, and simmer for 10-15 minutes till raw smell goes and the kuzahmbu is quite thick. The longer it simmers, the tastier it is. Can be eaten mixed with cooked rice. Goes well as a side dish with almost anything: from bread and chappati to dosa and idli.

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