Archives for : May2016

Exclusively Festive Food in Festive Seasons

In colorful India we have a huge variety of foods that people consume every day, different food in different time. Starting from North to south we come across thousands of foods across the country. The most interesting part is the dishes prepared in the festive season, it’s almost every day celebrated.

The celebration season is throughout the year in India;

Sankranti it’s a Harvest festival, especial laddu of Jaggery, roasted Sesame seed and roasted peanut are mixed and blended into laddu’s.

Pongal is the South Indian version of Sankrati the first rice of this season is prepared with Jaggery and Raisins.

GudiPadva/Ugadi (Hindu new year) Crushed Neem leaves is consumed with Jaggery, it has magical effect on our belly, it’s taken in a very small portion.

Holi Festival of color, special Karanji a curved shaped Khoya (reduced dry milk) and dry fruits stuffed in a wheat dove pockets and deep fried and Malpua preparation of wheat pancakes in syrup.

Baisakhi harvesting season in Punjab Mustard leaf vegetable and Roti made from Corn flour and special Punjabi Lassi made of Yoghurt, Buttermilk and sugar.

Rakshabandhan A threads relation between Brother and Sister. In this festival sister prepare sweets according to their brother’s choice, e.g., Gulabjamun a mix of Khoya balls, fried in clarified butter and dipped in syrup.

Janmastami The Birthday of Lord Krishna a special powder is prepared by dry ginger powder with sugar powder and coriander powder are blended together and eaten this has a curative effect on our digestive system, Butter and Rock Sugar.

Ganeshchaturthi a special offering to Lord Ganesha is Modak a dry fruit mix with sugar and coconut.

Onam in Kerala it’s the main festival of harvest Aavial,Pachadi, Rassam, payasam are some main dishes.

Muharram Haleem is prepared by the Muslims in India.

Dussehra this is the festival of victory over evil a large range of menu is being prepared all over India.

Diwali is famous for recipes like Laddu, gujiya, Namkeen pare, Chivda, Shakkar pare and hundreds of recipes in this festival.

Christmas a special month of Christians and special Christmas cake and many more dishes are done in India.

The Indians wait all the yearlong to enjoy the festival and the rich food made for this occasion. The food varies from state to state and area to area, the most interesting thing is the food offered to the God is usually sweet; Lots of sweets are consumed during this period, there are some scientific reasons behind the food that are being prepared during this festive season. The climatic conditions and the food consumed are perfect blend to improve our health at festive time. Some dishes are done once in a year during the festive season, people eagerly wait for a whole year. It has great effect on our appetite and digestive system too. The whole arena is full of life and people are more excited during the festival, all castes and creeds enjoy the company of each other. It’s the time when heavenly powers are showered on you and you would not like to miss a chance.

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You Can Love and Trust Yourself With Food

This month I would like to share my L.I.V.E.T. I created this as an alternative to dieting, so you can be empowered to eat in a positive way instead. By learning to listen to your body instead of your emotions, you can gain peace of mind around food and body image issues.

L – Love yourself right now for who you are inside not what you see or think you see in the mirror. The real you is not your outer shell, it is your heart, the core of you, your love, emotions, feelings and desires. Honour and respect the true you so you can start to give yourself what you need in ways other than food.

I – Intuition is absolutely key to being able to trust yourself and learn to eat naturally. It is essential you always go with your gut instinct and eat food you truly want, not what you should eat. If you eat what you should you may be satisfied physically but not emotionally. Therefore you will simply crave what you truly wanted in the first place and overindulge at some stage.

V – Variety in food is extremely important so it becomes spontaneous and natural. If you are always eating the same thing it becomes boring and regimented and very difficult to become emotionally satisfied. Satisfaction is the key to being able to stop. Remember when you eat naturally you are allowed to eat anything you like.

E – Enjoyment is so important. Some of us have stopped enjoying our food because it has become a problem and a worry and we often just do it to get it done. Or we may be in the middle of a binge so we may not even notice or taste the food. I really encourage you to slow down, taste, savour and get pleasure from it. Again this will help you be satisfied. When you are satisfied, you won’t be thinking about food when you aren’t hungry.

T – Trust and intuition go hand in hand with natural eating. The main reason people go on diets is because they don’t trust themselves around food and feel they have to follow a rigid plan in order to be healthy. Trust your body, it absolutely knows what it wants. Listen to it, eat when it is hungry and stop when it is satisfied and it won’t let you down. The problems only come when we ignore it.

As you can see, all the suggestions above are positive and empowering and enable you to tune into your body’s natural instincts. It’s certainly a lot more fun than starving and depriving ourselves and will ensure lifetime positive results instead of a short term fix which is not sustainable over time.

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How to Define Organic Foods

Exactly what are Organic Foods?

The USDA National Organic Program (NOP) defines organic agriculture as a methodology that creates products utilizing best practices designed to preserve the environment and avoid synthetic pesticides, antibiotics, hormones or genetically modified seeds/foods. The USDA NOP program has specific requirements about how farmers and ranchers grow crops and raise livestock and which seeds, and feeds they can use

These requirements cover the product from farm to table, and address issues such as soil and water quality, pest control, livestock practices, and rules for food additives.

Some of the requirements for organic farming include-

  • Preserving resources that contribute to biodiversity
  • Supporting animal well-being and overall health
  • Providing access to the outdoors to ensure that animals can exercise
  • Only using authorized products
  • Not using genetically modified materials
  • Being subjected to annual inspections that are on location
  • Separating food that is organic non-organic food”
  • Not utilizing any type of irradiation or x-rays to get rid of pests, which can lead to DNA mutations.
  • Manure and compost are used in place of synthetic fertilizers.
  • Only organic insecticides are used produced by plant oils, soap, fungus eating bacteria, or bugs that eat other bugs.

In short organically grown food is defined as food prepared by sticking to a strict regimen of rules and practices. In order to be certified farmers are regularly subject to scheduled inspections and must meet certain standards.

This is a point that is important to consider. When a food gets the USDA Organic Label it indicates it has at least 95% organic ingredients and the farm was examined by a government approved expert to ensure that the farmer is sticking to the criteria established by the USDA. Before the USDA NOP was started there were no specifications in place, which meant you never knew how your food was being grown.

The USDA organic labeling program began in 2001 and as of 2016 there are over 31,000 commercial farmers in the US and in over 100 countries around the globe that are organic certified. Today organic food is a $43 billion industry, and is the fastest growing niches in the food sector.

Are Organic Foods Pesticide Free?

While it is simple to define organic food, one of the prevalent misconceptions and commonly cited reason for eating organics is that they are pesticide free.

The fact of the matter is that they are only free of synthetic pesticides. Because one of the requirements to be considered organic is to not apply synthetic pesticide, as noted above, farmers can however use organic pesticides and fertilizers taken from plant life or other organic materials which may or may not be just as toxic to humans. Despite this, in a poll done in the UNITED KINGDOM in 2005, 95% of people said they were eating organic food in order to avoid pesticides and food additives.

Nevertheless in a study done in 2014 at Newcastle University in the UK the scientists concluded that pesticide residues were four times more likely in conventional crops than in organic ones.

It’s quite easy to define organic food because it has distinct standards and requirements to meet and while they are not pesticide free I believe that organic food does taste better since it doesn’t rely on lots of preservatives it needs to be fresher, which also generally equates to tastier.

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The Perfect Spring Snacks

Having a snack throughout the day is important to keep your energy up and having different options could help satisfy your taste buds. During spring there are more food options that are tolerable since the cold limiting your choices. Here are the perfect spring snacks to make at home:

  • There is so much you can do with vegetables during the warmer months of the year. They are refreshing and keep your energy up. Adding a bit of sour cream to your celery sticks or carrot sticks will give the vegetables a delightful flavour.
  • Soups may be a winter food but why not give cold soup a try? Cucumber soup has the pleasant fresh taste that everyone enjoys. Add garlic and salt for some flavour and for convenience this snack doesn’t even need to be cooked.
  • Making yourself some couscous is a quick snack that fills you up enough for a little while. Mixing the grain with oil and cheese is a delicious spring meal which does not take much effort.
  • Egg sandwiches are a filling snack that is healthy and satisfying. Mixing a bit of curry powder will give the yolky food a small kick. It’s a good thing that curry powder is available in most of your wholesaler stores.
  • If you’re the person who enjoys the sweeter snacks then fruit is definitely the way to go. Fruit salad with a bit of whipped cream or sugar is light and healthy. Not too much cream and sugar. Just chop up a bunch of fruits of your choice and the hard part is practically done.
  • Fruit is also perfect for smoothies. The tastes merged together give a whole new fresh flavour. Sometimes eating is not what you feel like doing so make a drink instead.
  • Coconut bread can be made into a savoury snack or a sweet one. Just mix up coconut flour, baking powder, a few eggs and butter and it will be ready in less than three minutes. This is the quickest bread to make and it fills you up the way a normal snack should. You won’t feel the need to have more.

It’s important to have snacks during the day to keep your mind active and awake, even if the snacks are small such as a fruit or an energy bar. Always make sure that you don’t over feed yourself if you are not that hungry as your body will take more energy just to digest the unnecessary food in your system. The smaller portions you eat, the quicker your metabolism reacts. Snacks are available at any wholesaler store.

J&E Cash ‘n Carry is one of South Africa’s biggest wholesalers in the following categories of products: Cosmetics, Groceries, Sweets, Personal Care, Household, Health, Beauty, Baby, Hardware, Electric & Stationery. We supply traders only, and offer the highest standards of service, the cheapest deals, and the best buying experience.

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