"I love Indian food and miss it a lot when I travel. It is so flavourful and wholesome. The focus in any Indian household is “Aaj kya subzi hain?” The food at home is always whatever is readily available and what’s fresh. Thank god we still don’t have the culture to cook from a frozen packet. I landed from LA yesterday and the first meal I had was dal, chawal, papad and pickle. I really miss Indian food when I’m away from home.
My lunch is usually dal, rice, vegetables and a spoonful of ghee. I love rice and it satiates me. I try to have at least one or two green vegetables a day. I usually have fresh dosa batter at home which I use to make uttappams with lots of vegetables. That’s my dinner. I have it with freshly ground chutney. Sometimes I have a light soup. There is always vegetable stock in the fridge. Some days a big bowl of sprout salad makes up for dinner. The idea is to have a nutritious meal not necessarily high in calories. For snacks in between meals I have dry chana or peanuts.
My Earliest Food Memory
I grew up in a joint family. An unmistakable morning ritual was getting together and eating yummy parathas. The parathas at home were thin and not very oily. We would have them with home-made aachar (pickle) or curd. I would have the same packed in my school tiffin.
When I Travel…
I always carry a plastic sieve to sprouts grains. Sprouts are the best living food. I eat a lot of fresh food every day and sprouts are a major part of it. Back home I have a sprout maker. It’s light on the stomach and takes care of my protein needs too.
Being a Globe-trotting Vegetarian…
Is tough! And annoying at times. There are fewer options. Most restaurants in the United States just dish out French fries in the name of vegetarian food. Europe is pro-vegetarian, and there is greater awareness, and hence, availability of vegan options. They make amazing stuff with avocado, quinoa, kale… I love the vegetarian food in Paris -- freshly baked bread, olive oil, almost every café serves soy and almond milk which is amazing.
South East Asia with its predominant fish culture is a difficult place for me. In such a scenario I make do with whatever is available. Grilled vegetables and bread are the best bet. In the Middle East, I get away with eating fresh pita bread with hummus and olive oil. I quite like that.
Featured Image Concept: Vartika Pahuja
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