Thursday, 20 February 2020

The Dosa Batter to the Rescue: Everyday Morning Story

Breakfast used to be a headache to me. My son Aarav just wouldn’t eat anything I made. ‘I don’t like poha!” and “I am bored of chapattis and sandwiches!” was his normal complaint every morning. 

So I thought of throwing the ball in his court, and one day asked him, "What do you want beta for breakfast? What do you like to have for breakfast?” 

“Why can’t you make crispy dosas everyday like Sanjay’s mom does?” he asked me.
I was surprised! I didn’t know he liked dosas so much! I used to make dosas at home, but being a teacher, I couldn’t always make dosa dough. I tried, but it wasn’t easy for me to squeeze in time to remember to soak the grains, and then grind dosa dough. So I make it very rarely nowadays, only on special occasions, and when we have holidays. 

But I thought I had to do something about this now. If Aarav likes dosas so much, then I should find a solution to the problem. So I decided to pay a visit to my friend Uma, Sanjay’s mother, who also works, but is a software developer. 

I visited her one day and asked, “I heard from Aarav that you make delicious dosas these days! How do you do it? How do you find time to soak the dhalls and grind the dough to leave for fermenting?” 

“Ha! Ha! Ha!” I was surprised to find Uma laughing!

“There’s no secret to it Sowmya! Do you really think I can find time to soak dhalls and grind dosa dough?”

“I’m usually tired by the time I come home and have just enough energy to cook dinner and perform other household tasks. I can’t go through the hassles of grinding any dosa dough!” she told me. 

“It’s all thanks to this new fresh dosa dough that I now fry dosas so often at home. In fact, after I noticed how Aarav enjoyed my dosas, I thought I should tell you my secret! You’ll be happy, and surprised to know that you too can fry crispy dosas for Aarav!”, she told me. 

“Which dosa dough are you talking about Uma?” I asked her. 

“I’ve tried a few brands in the market but Aarav always has some complaints or the other about it. It’s either too sour or too thin or too bitter he says. I’ve given up on trying any other dosa dough in fact!” I told Uma.

“Sowmya, you just have to try this dosa dough from Healthy Buddha.”, she told me. 

“Healthy Buddha? Isn’t that the shop that sells organic vegetables and foodstuffs?” I asked her. 

“Yes, it is. They now home deliver fresh dosa batter as well. What I especially like about it is that there are no preservatives in it and the dough’s made using organic dhalls and rice!” she told me. 

“What’s most important is that the dosas taste so much like the dosas we make at home! That’s why everyone at home, including your Aarav loves the dosa so much. In fact, I’ve not used any other brand since I’ve started using this dosa dough! Besides, you can also use it to steam delicious idlis if you are bored of frying dosas!” Uma told me. 

‘Okay, so it’s done!” I told Uma. “I will also order dosa dough from Healthy Buddha, and see what Aarav and his daddy have to say about it!”

So the next day I surprised Aarav and his dad by making delicious dosa and chutney at home. I just loved the look on Aarav’s face when he saw and ate the dosa!

“Wow mamma!!! The dosa is so crispy and delicious, just like the dosa aunty Uma makes! Thank you mamma!” Aarav told me. And about his daddy, he just looked at me with bewilderment, smiled and gave me a thumbs up sign! 

Wednesday, 19 February 2020

Why we don’t have Maida at Healthy Buddha

If you have been looking around, and can’t find maida or anything with it on Healthy Buddha, well, there’s a reason for it. Since the start, we at Healthy Buddha have decided that we will not sell maida or anything with it. If you ask why, well there are so many reasons for it!

Here’s why you too should avoid maida

Have you ever wondered what maida is in the first place?

It’s nothing but the leftover waste remains of wheat flour extraction. It contains nothing nutritional, is bleached with benzoyl peroxide to look good, and softened with Alloxam to give a nice textured floor.

Maida is used in mostly every bakery product today like bread, pasta, cakes and cookies and even in pizzas, naans and rumali roti. These are the foods you and your growing children may love, but unfortunately, gain nothing nutritional from them. That's why at Healthy Buddha we don't use any maida even in our bakery products. As a result of which, the breads are a bit more dense vs the regular commercial breads.

A little about the wheat crop structure

You can understand how empty maida is by understanding about the wheat crop structure. Wheat crop consists of:
1.     The bran, which is a hard outer bran coating covering the wheat kernel and is high in fiber and nutrients.
2.     An inner endosperm constituting 83% of the kernel ‘insides’ and is mostly starch, with nothing nutritional.
3.     The nutrient-rich embryo or germ that grows into a new wheat plant.  

So you can see that while the bran and germ are both nutritionally dense, the inner endosperm only carries empty calories. It is this endosperm that’s used as maida after undergoing a refining process.  

How wheat flour and maida are made

Wheat flour or atta is produced by grinding wheat, including its husk bran, germ and endosperm. Maida or all purpose flour is made from the grain’s starchy endosperm. 

The resulting flour is naturally yellowish in colour because of wheat pigments. Maida is thus bleached naturally by atmospheric oxygen or artificially using any flour bleaching agent.

Now, Why maida isn’t good for you

  •    It contains harmful chemicals like benzoyl peroxide and Alloxam
  •  Maida is heavy, and needs longer to digest. The absence of roughage pressurizes the digestive system to lead to intestinal infections.
  • Maida has a high glycaemic index (GI), of about 71, and thus double the amount of calories if compared to low GI and unprocessed foods. Too much of maida spikes the calorie count, and provides the body with extra glucose. The extra glucose accumulates in the body to lead to obesity and rapid weight gain. 
  • The absence of nutrients adds nothing to your health but empty calories, while damaging your overall health.
  •   Foods containing maida quickly releases sugars into the bloodstream, making the pancreas overwork to release enough insulin. Too much of maida reduces the body’s insulin production and leads to diabetes.
  •    Maida sticks to your intestine and prevents the absorption of nutrients in other foods.
  •  Maida increases bad cholesterol level (LDL) to lead to health problems like weight gain, mood swings and high blood pressure.
  •   Lastly, maida causes inflammation in the body, which isn’t healthy for women with PCOS.

Look for healthier alternatives

Processed foods like white flour, soft drinks and refined sugar are widely available. But they just carry empty calories and make you malnourished.

Start avoiding anything with maida, and try replacing it with healthier products made from whole wheat flour, oats, bajra flour, maize flour, ragi flour, etc.

Healthy Buddha products do not have maida, but we do have a large variety of products made using these healthier, alternative grains.