Sustainability in Food

Originally published on by The Culinary Lab: Take care of your Palate and Planet!

Sustainability, local & seasonal! These are the terms we at TCL are proud to associate our food and our philosophy with, but you don’t have to be a chef or an avid cook to understand or incorporate these terms in your life. Sustainability is a term used very loosely to encompass everything from fuel, fashion to food, but how do we begin living sustainably? The answer is actually quite simple. It all begins with making informed decisions. In every store, there are sustainable alternatives standing in as perfect substitutes for imported favourites. Whether it is due to unfamiliarity with a product or how to incorporate it within our diet, we often overlook these products, opting instead for their trendy or popular alternatives. By the time you finish reading this, we hope you will update your shopping list with alternatives keeping in mind not just your palate but your planet.

Originally published by The Culinary Lab In Season : Summer Vegetables   

Summers: love them or hate them, we still have to eat. As the mercury rises, the kitchen is the last place many of us would like to be, opting instead for the comfort of home delivery or better still, indulging in the sticky sweetness of summer’s beloved fruit: mangoes! Well nectar aside, there are so many things to love about summer, not least among them vegetables. What?! How can you get excited about vegetables as dull as okra or as uninspiring as a pumpkin? Well, we think it may be time to change your perspective. Why should Winters have all the fun when there is so much to celebrate in the summer!

 Originally published by The Culinary Lab: In-Season: Summer Vegetable (Okra)

Okra

Lady Fingers! What a word, so much romance and wit within one word. Why is that we see the evergreen lady finger as boring? Okra is an incredibly dynamic summer staple, however, often sadly misunderstood. And yet a vegetable which can be a disaster can at times when sensitively handled, be a revelation! Summer Sabzi are fickle and require a loving hand to reveal the hidden deliciousness of their character.

Okra is an incredible powerhouse of nutrition. 130 grams contains 12% of daily fibre, 38% of vitamin C, 8% of both potassium & calcium needs for the day. This at just 33 calories. Alongside this, okra is absolutely delicious and extremely versatile. Fried, roasted, stewed, ground, pickled & eaten raw it is a world of recipes for this often overlooked & underloved summer stand-by.

Roasted Okra Salsa

  1. Wash and dry about 100 g ladyfinger. Cut the head and tail of all of them.

  2. Cut the ladyfinger into 1⁄2 inch circles. Season with salt and oil. Bake for 5-6 minutes. Or light brown in colour.

  3. Char the corn, capsicum and tomato either on flame or in a very hot pan. Cover and rest for 5-7 minutes. Peel the skin and chop into small dice.

  4. Toss all ingredients in a large bowl, season with salt, lemon juice and chopped fresh coriander.

 Originally published by The Culinary Lab: In-Season: Summer Vegetable (Pumpkin)

Pumpkin :

How many times have you stood at the market eying the huge pumpkins unsure what actually to do with them? Pumpkin can be a difficult vegetable to crack. In truth pumpkin is one of the most versatile vegetables of all, being equally a savoury dish and a sweet one, but it can also be one of the vegetable kingdom’s most inscrutable. We all love pumpkin for its adaptability; however, when it comes to cooking it well, that is a different matter altogether.

Have no fear for the pumpkin is a friend, not a foe. The first thing to know, ​kaddu ​is extremely forgiving, there is no bad way to cook a pumpkin. It can become a halwa, or a soup, it makes for an excellent ​sabzi ​and the perfect filler for large groups, it can be mashed or stewed, served in a salad, steamed or baked, it can even transform into a latté! Pumpkin, with its high water content, means it very quickly cooks down, alongside staying remarkably fresh for days in the summer heat. Pumpkin’s beauty lies in its sweetness, its fresh vegetal aroma taking on a soft, silky sweetness with heat. The truth is pumpkin, much like potato or ​shakarkandi,​ is a canvas for taste, 

adapting to any characteristic profile as long as a certain balance between flavour is maintained.

● Pumpkin Butter​

Use for a spread in sandwiches/ burgers, Use as a base for pasta or as dressing for the salad.

  1. Peel and cut 250 g yellow pumpkin into 2-3 inch pieces.

  2. Marinate with salt and oil. Cover in silver foil and bake at 180 degrees

    for 15-20 min or till cooked but not mush.

  3. Cool it down.

  4. In a saucepan, heat 50 g butter on low heat. Cook till milk solids have

    caramelized/ turned light brown. Take off the heat and bring it to room

    temperature.

  5. Distil the clarified butter from milk.

  6. In a blender, add cooked pumpkin and clarified butter and make a

    smooth puree. Season with salt and black pepper.

  7. Keep at room temperature for optimal use. (Can completely remove the

    butter for vegan version)

 

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