This year, The World Food Programme was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. In doing so the hunger parity around the world has been brought into focus, and Hunger has been identified as a human right violation.  

Importance of sustenance can only be defined by the people who are starving. We have enough and we assume everyone else also has enough, or the government is taking care of its citizen. In India, mostly 200 million people sleep hungry. Now you must think, “How does this concern me?”, it’s “we” who are responsible for food wastage. We create a demand for and consume food on a daily basis, by doing this we become active participants in the country’s food resource management.

Why Is Food Wasted?

The first question to arise is why is food even wasted. The answer although very simple may seem very appalling, food is wasted due to our carelessness. Think about it, when grocery shopping, we tend to buy more than we need. Some items are bought on a whim to be either tried or indulged in. It is basic human psychology to have more options available, even when we know deep down that we may never end up using or trying those options out. Having options brings a sense of security to us; knowing that we can avail these options when in need, very much like how insurance works. We pay insane insurance premiums on our homes, cars and possessions in the anticipation of some unforeseen circumstances that may require for us to be equipped with an insurance. Similarly, with food, we buy more than what we need just in case we may need it. Moreover when these purchases are brought home, we end up using only those items that we have need of on the regular basis.

India wastes up to 40% of the food. Also, approximately 21 million heaps of wheat is wasted. If counted in cash it equals to Rs. 50,000 crores of estimated value of wastage every year of the country. 

CSR Journal

Even our usage is biased, say you bought a jar of olives for a dinner date for two, you will only end of using a quarter of the olives in the jar; the remainder olives will be siting in the jar until you forget about them or they go bad. Instead you could plan to incorporate the remaining olives in different dishes throughout the week. 

Sometimes improper storage also leads to unwanted food wastage, for example, an opened jar of mayonnaise is kept outside at room temperature instead of in the refrigerator. Or green leafy vegetables are stored stacked in the refrigerator without washing or cleaning on top of each other which will result in the veggies becoming slimy and bad hence unusable.

Another form of food wastage is consuming more than your body requires. Over-eating is a disease which leads to many physiological symptoms that are not good for the average human body.

Additionally on social occasions such as weddings and big event parties leftover food gets discarded straight into the dustbins, since more food is prepared for a buffet sitting as opposed to measured portions of a sit down dinner.

Things you can do to minimise food wastage

These are simple conscious things you can do on a daily basis to minimise your food wastage. Some of these practices call for a lifestyle change and to be more mindful of your decisions and actions regarding your consumption and purchasing habits.

Plan your shopping according to your weekly meal plan

Make a List: Before every grocery shopping make a list of all that you plan to buy, then sort these items as either necessary (Need Based) or less significant (Want Based). This should help you make conscious decisions about what you are buying for the need of sustenance and leading a healthy lifestyle as opposed to purchases you are making as an indulgence.

Meal Planning: Plan your meals on a weekly basis; know what you are going to cook (ingredients such as meat or vegetables), when you are going to cook (breakfast, lunch or dinner) and how you are going to cook (recipe). This practice will help you incorporate seasonal vegetables and fruits in your diet as well as help curb your spending on bulk buying only to see the items go bad or throw them away unused when the goods cross the expiry date. 

Seasonal and fresh

Eat Fresh: Always eat what is fresh and in season, try consuming seasonal fruits and vegetables as fresh as they come instead of storing them in the refrigerator. This practice should also help you adopt a healthy eating habit as consuming stale food can be harmful to the human body. 

Pulav

Revamp Leftovers: While you are planning your weekly meals you could also accommodate any anticipated leftovers from previous meals into completely revamped dishes. Stale chapatis can become chewda or even crunchy tortillas. Rice could be sautéed a million different ways with a few ingredients to taste completely different. Veggies could be added to Dal (lentils) to make them more wholesome. Leftover salad could be added to beaten eggs to make an excellent omelet or frittata.

Help the needy

Donate Food: When you have a function and anticipate there is going to be left over food, then you could plan to donate the food after the event. There are NGO’s and local organisations who collect food, repackage and dispense it amongst the needy. You could make enquires and find out which organisations are operational near you.

Make sure to purchase only what you need

Stay Mindful: Awareness begins from within, teach yourself first by practicing new methods and figure out what works best for you. When at home only serve what you need in your plate, if more food is needed then you would serve yourself more food later, this will help food being wasted directly from your plate. Even when going for a meal at a restaurant order only as much needed, you can always order more later if not sufficient. Incase of some leftovers, parcel it; have it the next day or give it to someone who are needy. 

Planning is the key!

A little bit of foresight will go a long way in helping you identify, manage and minimise your food wastage. It is better to identify all the practices that you can practically do for yourself and then slowly incorporate them into your family’s routines. Hunger is a violation of basic human rights and it is up to us individually to contribute what little we can to help manage the limited food resource we have and share it more wholesomely with our fellow citizens.

16th of October is celebrated as ‘World Food Day’. Why not celebrate it everyday?


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Know your Mushrooms

Mushrooms are fungi that we consumer in so many delicious recipes. Know what mushrooms are good to consume and how to identify rotten mushrooms. Follow the link for more information…

Top Foods To Battle Them Rainy Blues

Know what to eat during which season and stay healthy all year round. Our bodies acclimatise internally during every natural season, to help our bodies adjust to the change more optimally it is important to consume fresh and seasonal produce, read more…

Here comes the rain Cuisine Canvas

HERE COMES THE RAIN!

Our body automatically internally adjusts to the external changes in the weather. This call’s for an adjustment to our diets seasonally to help our bodies accommodate these changes with ease. Read more to find out what you should and shouldn’t eat..

Mushroom are allegedly the first food to be discovered by humans. These are as ancient in heritage as the humans. Mushrooms are also called toadstools which belong to the kingdom Fungi and is categorised in the Phylum Basidiomycota.

There are many types of mushrooms but only a few humans can consume without any harm. Mushrooms generally have a fleshy texture and produce spores in the form of pollen, which is further scattered by wind to different regions. After settling, a mushroom is matured in arms of nature i.e. either in soil or in wood.

The most common type of mushroom which is spotted in every kitchen is called “Agaricus bisporus” which is formed of three main parts “stipe” meaning the stem, “pileus” the cap and “lamella” the gills.

Edible Fungi

All mushrooms are not edible as they grow in the wild. There are only fourteen types which are safe for consumption including Cremini, Morel, Shiitake, Oyster, Lion’s Mane, White Button, Portobello, Beech, King Trumpet, Black Trumpet, Chanterelle, Hedgehog, Maitake and Porcini mushrooms. 

Are you still questioning the popularity of Mushrooms?

Indeed mushrooms are wild but on a large scale are a favourite option in many countries. China is the largest producer of edible mushrooms. These little wild varieties are filled with vitamins and fibre having a nutritious effect on our bodies. Nowadays, the increasing popularity is due to the trend of plant-based diet.

They are free from fat and keeps your cholesterol levels in moderation. Its texture feels more like meat, of course, this is a vegetarian dish. It is mostly loved due to its wild natural growing where not much attention and care is required. It is only disliked as an exception for some who are allergic to it.

How to Identify a rotten Mushroom?

1. The colour appears dark than the actual appearance.

2. Bad odour and a slimy feel upon touching.

3. Present in storage for more than 14 days and have wrinkles on them or withered patches.

Precaution is better than cure – If your mushrooms are spoiled do not take any chances, throw them away as they can make you sick.

How to Prepare Mushrooms?

Most mushrooms are covered in dirt as they mostly grow in soil or near the base of the trees. Immersing them in a lukewarm bath for 5-10 mins before handing mushrooms is a good way to start.

Sautéing them in some oil and butter topped with some fresh herbs and seasoned with salt and pepper is the simplest way you can prepare these tasty vegetable.


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World Food Day: How To Minimise Food Wastage

16th of October is celebrated as ‘World Food Day’. Why not celebrate it everyday? – This year, The World Food Programme was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. In doing so the hunger parity around the world has been brought into focus, and Hunger has been identified as a human right violation. Read more on how you can minimise your food wastage.

Chicken Kacchi Biryani Cuisine Canvas

Chicken Kacchi Biryani In Earthen Pot

This is a scrumptious and wholesome recipe that brings the best of both worlds together, the succulent chicken made along with fragrant savoury basmati rice. Read more for the complete recipe…

Mutton Kheema Roll with Cheese Cuisine Canvas

Mutton Kheema Rolls with Cheese

You’ve heard of the Kheema Samosa. Now try the Kheema Roll, this recipe is made by compactly rolling the spiced minced meat around cheese and deep fried to golden perfection. Read more…

When it comes to preventing and fighting infections and diseases caused due to the rainy season, these monsoon superfoods should become your new best friend. Try including them in your diet through various recipes.

Check out our website to find ideas for your next dish including some of these helpful ingredients.

  • Mushrooms: They are loaded with healthy antioxidants and immunity boosters that are great for your gut. Be careful to select good quality mushrooms and wash them properly.

  • Turmeric: As a dietary supplement, turmeric curcumin supplies you with a healthy dose of powerful antioxidants. It also has a positive effect on our inflammation response which can greatly benefit the healthy functioning of the immune system.

  • Black pepper: This spice is a powerhouse of nutrients such as phosphorus, manganese, carotene, selenium and vitamin K. It is great for throat infections and battling  a cold.

  • Garlic and ginger: Garlic contains a good amount of sulphur-containing compounds such as allicin and ginger packs some heat in the form of gingerol, a relative of capsaicin. Both the ingredients are a must have for building immunity and keeping healthy.

  • Bitter foods: Vegetables like methi, bitter gourd, neem etc are vastly helpful in combating the health effects of the so called flu season.

  • Green tea: Green tea is loaded with powerful antioxidants which can help in strengthening the immune system. Green tea infusions with ginger, clove, cinnamon and peppercorn can also boost immunity. You can also sweeten it with a little honey.

Green Tea with Tulsi and Lemon

  • Tulsi: Also known as holy basil, it is an excellent herb to soothe a cough, sore throat and reduce inflammation. Adding tulsi leaves to your daily tea or with hot water is a great way to remain healthy during the monsoons.

  • Lemon: Lemons and lemon peels are jam packed with essential nutrients for a healthy living and work very well to foster a good healthy body during the season.

  • Lean meats: Lean meats like egg whites help to keep the body warm without putting excess pressure on the system and therefore are a good option to add during a rainy season diet.

  • Pulses: Lighter dals and preparations should be preferred as digestion gets skewed during the wet weather. Dals and pulses are greatly beneficial to our bodies and should definitely be included in a monsoon diet as well.

  • Bell peppers: This versatile vegetable is packed with vitamin C and many other necessary minerals. Use it in salads, soups, boiled, or in curries.

  • Nuts and seeds: Almonds, pine nuts, walnuts, apricots, raisins, ground nuts, dates, sunflower seeds and sesame seeds are loaded with immunity-boosters like omega-3, zinc and magnesium. Include them in your daily diet as well.

We hope some of these tips may help you find a healthy balance within your body and give you ideas for what works best in terms of combating ailments and illnesses. Do remember to check out the many recipes we have for you on the website. Let us know what you think of these tips. 


Until next time – stay healthy, stay happy!


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Monsoons are a source of great happiness. The beauty of sharing a steaming meal with loved ones, while rain patters outside windows and great conversations flow easily like water pouring down.

However, monsoons are also a source of bodily imbalance, germs and overall gloom. It is important to be careful of what you eat and how you eat during the rainy season. Indeed, we are all guilty of enjoying deep fried foods with carefree abandon! Yet, it is important to remember that our bodies go through various changes with the changing weather and maintaining a healthy body balance is definitely the way to go. `

According to Ayurveda, the human body is governed by three ‘doshas – Vata, Pitta and Kapha’. These ‘doshas’ help in the regulation of all human actions and govern the majority of our psyche.

During the monsoons – Vata is aggravated, Pitta is accumulated and Kapha is controlled. Vata governs all movement in the mind and body including blood flow, elimination of wastes, breathing and the movement of thoughts.

Vata gets affected and this results in:

  • Lowered Digestion Power – food is not easily digested during the season and this should reflect in our dietary habits also.
  • Low Immunity – Rains are notorious time for people to fall sick. Germs, infections and overall hygiene is hugely affected. 
  • Low body strength – We have all felt the effect of a gloomy day, where all we want to do is sleep and laze away. This is directly related to the seasonal changes and how the difference in weather affects us.

The season also causes an increase in the level of Pitta in our body. Pitta is a toxic material in the form of heavy, sticky residue that can weaken digestion. Increase in Pitta results in various changes such as an uncomfortable feeling of heat in the body, acid reflux, digestive problems and heartburn. 

We recommend incorporating these foods in your diet and avoid the ones mentioned below. 

Dos –

  • Include garlic, pepper, ginger, asafoetida, jeera powder, turmeric and coriander in your food as these help enhance digestion and improves immunity.
  • Include cow’s ghee, lean meats, barley, rice, wheat and green gram in your diet. 
  • Include fruits such as pears, pomegranates, mangoes, guavas, apples, and pears
  • If days are cooler due to heavy rains; include sour, salty and oily foods in the diet. 
  • Avoid oily, spicy and acidic foods, as they aggravate the doshas in body. Steamed and cooked foods are healthier alternatives during the rainy season. 
  • Include buttermilk instead of curd in your diet.
  • Yams, sweet potatoes, carrots, garlic, bitter gourd and beetroot should be included in diet.
  • Drink boiled and then cooled down water with little honey.
  • Drink herbal teas like the ones infused with ginger, cinnamon, black pepper, and cardamom.

Don’ts – 

  • Avoid eating uncooked foods and salads. 
  • Avoid red meats and food items that take longer to digest. 
  • Cut down on tomatoes and tamarind to prevent water retention.
  • Avoid very salty food as it can cause high blood pressure, lead to bloating and water retention.
  • Avoid leafy greens during the season as they are susceptible to worm

We hope that together we can all find a balance between health and taste, find a beautiful relationship with food and we hope you find these tips helpful.

Stay healthy, stay happy!


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Palak Paneer Cuisine Canvas

Palak Paneer | Cottage Cheese In Spinach Puree

Golden yellow paneer nuggets surrounded by lush bottle green curry seasoned with spices and made rich with cream. This cottage cheese dish made in fresh spinach puree is not only a showstopper but also jam packed with nutrients. Best served for brunch, lunch or dinner.

Bowl of chana masala with flatbread Cuisine Canvas

Masala Chole (Chickpeas)

Masala chole/chickpeas is a quarantine friendly recipe, you only need to staples in your kitchen to prepare this dish. Chole aka Chickpeas is a superfood, this simple beige coloured bean is very prominent in asia and in India is it devoured in a variety of manner.

Golden Temple, Amritsar Cuisine Canvas

Baisakhi And The Tradition Of Langar

Get an understanding of what the festival of Baisakhi/Vaisakhi is and how it is celebrated. While also getting an insight into the Langars, the community kitchen operated at every Gurudwara, open to all religions and communities.

There are millions of dishes out there in the world, and so many of them are typically traditional and many more which are universal. These recipes are reported in multiple languages and in all mediums, but almost anywhere it is reported one thing remains constant and universal, the ‘abbreviations’. We all have been in situations where we are trying to cook and we see some abbreviations in the recipe book that we cannot understand. In this article, we will take a look at the common abbreviations used in recipes and their importance.

Common abbreviations

Most abbreviations that exist are for some sort of measurement. We are all aware of the common abbreviations like kg, g, l, and ml. The lesser-known abbreviations are TBl or TBsp both of which stand for tablespoon. Another such common short form is C, which stands for cup and lb that stands for pound. Oz stands for ounce. There are many more which may make us switch our mobiles on and make google do its work.

Some typical abbreviations that are a little difficult to understand are pinch or dash, jigger, cup. To be precise a pinch stands for less than ⅛ tablespoon and jigger stands for 1 ⅛ fluid ounces.

Abbreviation(s)Full form
C, cCup
G, gGram
Kg, kgKilogram
L, lLitre
Lb, lbPound
mL, mlMililitre
Oz, ozOunce
PnPinch
PtPint
t, tspTeaspoon
T, TB, Tbl, Tbsp, tbspTablespoon
Common Abbreviations for Measurement

The most difficult task is to exactly understand and follow the recipe measurement steps. To perfect a dish a chef must know in what quantity they should add the ingredients.

It also plays a big role in, the least or no wastage when the desired and perfect quantities of items are added.

This Measurement . . .. . . Equals To This Measurement
Pinch or dashless than 1/8 teaspoon
3 teaspoons1 tablespoon
2 tablespoons1 fluid ounce
1 jigger1 1/2 fluid ounces
4 tablespoons1/4 cup
5 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon1/3 cup
12 tablespoons3/4 cup
16 tablespoons1 cup
1 cup8 fluid ounces
2 cups1 pint or 16 fluid ounces
2 pints1 quart or 32 fluid ounces
4 quarts1 gallon
Converting Measurements

Cookbook is not just about sharing a variety of food products and recipes. When someone shares a recipe that is traditional or reinvented, they share their culture along with that recipe. Differences are known to carry a cultural diversity within them. The love of food has been knows as the most important factor of bringing people together from different origins. Also when people exchange recipes, they not just sharing the food but also their ideas and thinking on the dinner table.

Food might be seen as an effortless thing but many of the aspects that it carries alongside it that are very anthropological in nature. These are some reasons that make it worth having an interest in food and cooking, which also makes it enjoyable and not to mention sustains our health. 

Absolute Benefit Of Number Of Units Sold or you may abbreviate it to ABS BONUS – Knowing the abbreviations benefits you when you search a dish on Youtube as well. Ask us how?

By knowing the abbreviations you may be able to write the recipe as the chef speaks without pausing the video, as you will start documenting the recipe in shorthand.

For example: Sugar-free becomes SuF

                    Liquid becomes liq

                         Baking Powder becomes BP or B.P

Last one!……..Dozen becomes doz.


Did we miss any common recipe abbreviations or measurement conversions? Let us know in the comment section below.


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Eggs Sunny Side Up

Make the perfect Sunny Side Up egg, with the absolute very basic of ingredients. Such a filling and delicious recipe, yet oh so simple method cannot be found in all the realms. Read on for more…

The festival of Baisakhi signifies the solar new year as per Hinduism and Sikhism, it also marks the spring harvest festival where the farmers give thanks to god for the yield of the year. This day is celebrated with by preparing and sharing delicious traditional sweets and meals with family and friends, new clothes are bought, houses are cleaned and most importantly Gurudwaras are visited.

Baisakhi is also pronounced Vaisakhi, in some dialects depending on which state one resides in north India. Despite this being a day of significance to Hindus and Sikhs, it has the reputation of being a very secular festival, it has been historically known to be celebrated by muslims, christians as well as people from other religions.

A Gurudwara is a pristine holy place where the Guru Granth Sahib, the book containing the religious scriptures, is worshipped. Here langars are a belief of respect and seva (serving) where meals are served to all the people visiting the Gurudwara irrespective of their caste, religion, gender or ethnicity. 

A Home To All

Langars are served free of cost with a feeling of gratitude and respect. Gurudwara is said to be a home for every single person who is in search of food and shelter and therefore the food cooked is always vegetarian. 

People are equally invited for seva (serving) too which includes serving food, cleaning toilets, washing utensils, polishing shoes and any other daily activity in Gurudwara. The meal served includes kadi chawal, aloo puri, kheer, daal and the halwa in parshad. As langar is a community meal so the food is cooked and distributed in a community kitchen, everyone working together with a bond of brotherhood. Also, there are certain rules to be followed like covering heads, entering barefoot etc. 

Despite this being a day of significance to Hindus and Sikhs, it has the reputation of being a very secular festival, it has been historically known to be celebrated by muslims, christians as well as people from other religions.

The History

A special langar is prepared on occasions like Baisakhi and Gurupurabs especially in Gurudwara Pathar Sahib, Bangla Sahib, Gurudwara Paonta Sahib and other days of significance in Sikhism. 

Turning round the clock, this practice was started by Guru Nanak Dev Ji in a journey of fighting against caste system in Indian society during 13th and 14th century. He is the founder of ‘Sikhism’ which means ‘seeker of knowledge’ in Punjabi language and he made langar an integral part of Sikhism. He was the first guru of Sikhism and was born in Kartarpur, 1469 and was followed by 9 others, ending the counting with Guru Gobind Singh who died in 1708. Harmandir Sahib, popularly known as the Golden Temple in Amritsar was built by the fifth guru of sikhism, Guru Arjan Dev Ji. 

Find Help Indeed

According to their culture, The Sikhs are encouraged to donate ten percent (daswandh) of their wealth, time, or resources to a worthy cause like Langar Sewa and this helps Gurudwaras in providing resources. Langars are recognised as a sign of ‘Faith’ in sikhs and indulge in various activities in gurudwara to help the less fortunate.

Giveback

At a time like this when, we are under threat from an unseen enemy, the coronavirus; those of us with means are safe and well nourished within the comfort of our home, we must not forget those who have lost their livelihoods and their lives have been disrupted. These helpless citizens have become dependent on the Government and NGO’s for the absolute very basic. We at Cuisine Canvas will be making donations to the PM fund, the CM relief fund, Gurudwaras and NGOs that are on the frontlines providing support to those citizens of India fighting for survival. We recommend you do the same with your choice of government fund or NGO, if you can.

If you are not able to make any monetary contribution, then you can serve in your own little way by feeding the poor, sharing your groceries with the people in need or even feeding the street dogs.

Your help no matter how big or small is appreciated, Thank you.


Help where you can, how you can.


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Probably the most important question on our minds during this time of self quarantine, other than, ‘what to do?’ is, ‘what to eat?’, followed by ‘how?’.

In previous articles we clarified that Coronavirus is not transmitted via food, as long as the food is cooked and handled properly

It is a great time to support your local businesses such as the near by Kirana (grocery) store, fresh fruit and vegetable sellers around the corner and neighbourhood restaurants. This will limit your exposure to crowds and help small businesses survive this difficult time.   

Order Online

Since India started heeding the warnings by World Health Organisations and started taking precautions and ordering people to observe social distancing by staying at home and avoiding public areas such as malls and market, the online orders for groceries almost doubled overnight.

Order food online consciously.

In a pandemic like situation where we are dealing with something we know virtually nothing about, it is not just a question of getting food delivered but how it is being delivered. Whether necessary safety precautions are being observed by the companies and their employees to stop the spread of Coronavirus. 

In such a situation big retailers such as Future Group (the parent company of Big Bazaar), Grofers, Natures Basket, Amazon Pantry and Prime Now have all stated that they have adopted precaution practices to ensure safe delivery of necessary items.

Deliveries are allowed in some states in India

Online food delivery apps such as, Zomato was working on implementation of giving the option of contactless delivery, where the delivery boy would drop off the parcel at a designated place for the customers to collect it from. This would prohibit human to human interaction and prevent contraction of the virus.

Buying Groceries Locally

You can either order groceries and daily necessities online or ask your local grocer to deliver the items to your doorstep. Not many local grocers or fresh produce sellers would be equipped or have the manpower to make deliveries in person. In such cases you can call and order what you need in advance and arrange to pick it up yourself, limiting your exposure and obeying the social distancing norms. 

Buy veggies and groceries locally..

Presently in Mumbai, Maharashtra, pharmacists are make-shifting a barricade with bamboos outside their shops, the customers remain 5 to 6 feet away throughout the purchasing process. In many other cities throughout the state, fresh produce vendors are drawing markers on the ground at regular intervals to avoid over crowding and systematic supply of provisions for all.

The Delhi State government has decided to keep businesses providing essential services such as grocery shops to remain open for 24×7. The state authorities have also allowed online service providers to deliver the necessary commodities throughout the 21 day lockdown. 

Avoid hoarding grains and other daily staples

Similarly, in Gurugram, Haryana the local authorities are allowing delivery boys to make deliveries across the city for food, medicines and groceries. While Karnataka state authorities have decided to keep supermarkets and food markets open during the lockdown for its citizens. 

DO NOT PANIC and start hoarding vegetables and staples, the government is going to make provisions with small and big businesses to make sure the daily necessities and medical items are available at all times during the lockdown. 

When and if deliveries resume in your city, please do ensure to take necessary precautions. The online service providers are already ensuring every safety standard compliance to prevent the spread of Coronavirus. 

In the absence of any clarity from your local authorities on meal deliveries by online cooked meal delivery service providers, it is smart to prepare your own food from the comfort of your home.

Stay home and become a pro at cooking in no time


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Sheera | Gudi Padwa Special | Cuisine Canvas

Sheera | Gudi Padwa Special

Sheera is a savoury and sweet desert than can be whipped up in about 10 minutes with very basic ingredients to bring in the traditional Marathi New Year.

A lot has been shared over social media to help us understand how can one get exposed to  Coronavirus and develop symptoms of COVID-19. 

We all seem to be aware of the precautions we have to take to avoid contracting the virus along with practicing social distancing to protect the people who are the most vulnerable around us, such as the elderly and persons suffering from chronic or respiratory illnesses. 

With information comes awareness and in case of some individuals it may lead to anxiety that can manifest itself into physical symptoms. Acute care has to be taken in times of a pandemic to ensure that this anxiety does not snowball into mass hysteria. 

In light of India declaring a nationwide lockdown until the 14th of April, the accessibility to medicines and healthcare throughout the country will be strictly managed and controlled to ensure treatment of only the the most genuine of patients.

We can do our own part to protect ourselves from succumbing to the torrent of information flooding our smartphone screens and involuntarily participating in causing anxiety for others as well as ourselves.

Here are some suggestions to help you stay distracted and calm;

  • Limit exposure to news and mainstream media, first step zero down on about 3 news media sources of your choice. Second step only check out these sources for your daily dose of information. Third step, allow yourself a strict limited amount of time to spend on these sources, advisable 30 minutes total in a day. Moreover turn off notifications on your phone and laptop from all news sources even the ones you subscribe to, control the flow of information in a timely manner to avoid getting bombarded all the time.
Catch up on shows online from the comfort of your home..
  • Binge watch, this is a great time to get started on online entertainment. There are numerous series and movies available on Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hotstar, MX player etc. Some of these platforms are free while most of them offer a free trial period of 1 month before subscription starts. 
Ommmmmmmmm…
  • If you can’t go outside go Inside, this one may sound hippy dippy but let’s be honest, we have all been meaning to dedicate some time to learning how to meditate. There are multiple forms of meditation and this would be the best time for your to discover which type of meditation works for you. Here are some apps to help you get started ‘Buddhify‘, ‘Calm’, ‘Headspace‘, ‘Aura‘ and ‘Simple Habit’.
Learn to play an instrument..
  • Music, soothes the ears and calms the soul. We rely on music in our normal day to day lives to get us through the grind, so why not rely on it to get us through this curfew as well. You can learn to play an instrument during this time and show off these newly acquired skills when it is safe to host a house party.
Make a new dish everyday..
  • Feed your soul, it’s a great time to be indulging in good wholesome comfort food. Learn to make curries, veggies and lentils accompanied by rice or flatbreads, styled differently everyday. Lots of time on your hands to perfect that elusive road roti as well, just saying. 
We have got to start somewhere..
  • Get your limbs moving with ‘house cleaning’, it is the best time to get those cobwebs off the ceiling, clean the fans, retrieve the book fallen behind the bed. This will help you sweat as get you stretching like never before. Moreover clean surrounding keep ill thoughts at bay and harbour positivity.
Study at home..
  • Get that certification, you finally have the time and inclination to emerge as a certified specialist in your choice of vocation. Coursera is a great place to get started on university offered modules and courses, while upGrad provides curated specialised courses with certification from universities and regulatory bodies. Udemy is also one such platform that offers courses from multiple vocations from professionals along with certification.
Explore indoor hobbies..
  • Rediscover your hobbies, this is one time that you can really indulge in undertaking those activities that give you immense joy as long as you have the means to perform them indoors. Or find new hobbies that may pique your interest. The internet is full of activities and information, find your niche interest area and explore away.
Play card games…
  • Spend quality time with loved ones, family is the most important thing in life, it is more true now than ever. There are so many things you can do to optimise the time you spend with your loved ones, playing games like Luda and Snakes and Ladders is definitely a great way to start, card games such as Big Fool or Rummy, Antakshari and Dumb charades. You can always reconnect with your friends and family over call or FaceTime.
Sleep like a baby…
  • Snooze, now that you are not pressed for time you can catch up on those extra ZZZZZZs. A good nights sleep has been proven to help reduce anxiety and calm the nerves. So sleep as much as you need for as long as you need and wake up feeling physically rested and mentally rejuvenated to take on another day in a Nationwide Lockdown.

It is a tough time but we can get through this, together.


What activities are you planning to keep yourself and your loved ones busy?


Ideas to keep you entertained and occupied…

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It is very important to be cautious in times of a pandemic, not just to take care of ourselves but to also be considerate of those around us. This is becoming very true for the health and service industry that are functioning on an overdrive at the moment. It would be prudent to prepare your own meals at home as much as possible to help relieve the dependency on the food industry.

Where food is concerned the characteristic of temperature is two fold, one where it is weather related and the other where we induce it to prepare our meals. 

Effects of Weather


So far, the jury is out on the verdict of whether Coronavirus will subside on its own as its predecessor SARS did when the weather becomes warmer. This is due to the fact that this virus very new and there is not much data to study it and establish how this particular virus will behave in hot weather.

Initial examination of a laboratory-grown copy of the coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) shows that it is very sensitive to temperature, and that it may not survive in warmer climates. But the increasing number of cases in South East Asian Countries is already refuting the data that hotter climate may  impede the spread of the virus altogether.

In 2003 the WHO reported that the SARS Coronavirus is killed at a temperature of 56°C, at around 10000 units per 15 min. The data we have so far is on SARS, however the same cannot be said for the Coronavirus, although they belong to the same family of viruses. There just isn’t enough information about the Coronavirus to definitively predict its behaviour. This is clearly a wait and watch scenario where hot weather is concerned. 

Effects of Heat

Notwithstanding the above, there is no evidence of Coronavirus surviving in cooked meals. Stephen Morse, an epidemiologist at Columbia University, clarifies that there is a very small chance of contracting the virus through cooked meals. Although he also mentions that if the meal got contaminated post cooking then the chances of contracting go up drastically, for eg., if the cook, server or delivery agent, us included, do not take the necessary precaution or handle the food properly then the possibility of contracting the virus goes up drastically.  

It is imperative to know how to handle the food not just for yourself but for others as well.

What can we do?

Guess what, we already know what to do, the ‘Environment Studies’ module taught in primary school prepared us for just such an eventuality;

Cook your meals on flame or induction at high temperatures, making sure to expose every element of the dish to heat while preparing.

  • Thoroughly wash the produce before cooking.
  • Maintain a clean kitchen and dining area, by cleaning the surfaces with an alcohol disinfectant such as Dettol.
  • Cook your meals on flame or induction at high temperatures, making sure to expose every element of the dish to heat while preparing.
  • It is important to have warm if not hot meals, avoid salads or cold meals when you can.
  • Handle your own meals, plates, cutlery etc.
  • If you are getting food delivered to you, then make sure to remove the food from the delivery containers into clean home utensils, followed by safely disinfecting and discarding the container.
  • Furthermore, heat the delivered food up either in the microwave or on the stove before consuming it.

Following simple time tested instructions may just help us get ahead of this pandemic.

For more information please visit the World Health Organisation, (WHO) website for more detailed clarification. 

The research in this article is supported by notable websites of repute and International regulatory bodies.


Stay informed and stay safe.


For more information..

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These are trying times for everyone, Coronavirus or COVID-19 has been declared the first Pandemic in 11 years by the World Health Organisation (WHO) last week. Since then governments the world over have taken strict measures to curtail the spread of this novel Coronavirus. International trade between affected countries has all but stopped, citizens are being asked to voluntarily isolate themselves for 15 days by staying at home. In times like these the prevalent question of food hangs high above our heads in the fashion of a big neon ‘Question mark’ sign.

We have done some preliminary research into the question and have some much needed answers for you.  

The first question that would cross your mind is whether Coronavirus or COVID-19 is transmitted via food? 
Food and Coronavirus COVID-19

No, so far there has been no indication that the COVID-19 virus is transferable via food. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which is headquartered at Northern Italy, one of the worst affected countries outside of China, have confirmed that the virus does not transmit over food. 

The spread of the virus is attributed mainly due to human proximity, where a healthy person may come in contact with the droplets left behind by a person, either sneezing, coughing or exhaling, infected with Coronavirus or COVID-19.

Hot food prepared freshly and promptly runs a low risk of transmitting the COVID-19 virus. Whereas cold food or food consumed at room temperature where a person suffering from Coronavirus is present may increase the chances of contamination. 

Hot food prepared freshly and promptly runs a low risk of transmitting the COVID-19 virus

It is important to limit ones movements socially to deter the spread of the virus to those whose immune systems are already compromised, such as elderly individuals, children or people suffering from chronic and respiratory illnesses. 

For more information please visit the World Health Organisation, (WHO) website.

The research in this article is supported by notable websites of repute and International regulatory bodies. 


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