Last weekend saw me in a restaurant that claims to serve only sattvic food, in Bangalore. I was curious to see and taste their variety of sattvic dishes. Unfortunately, the restaurant serves only buffet meals and no a la carte. So, small eaters will have to go there with a large appetite! Anyways, a lot of their starters and main course dishes appeared to be sattvic. I couldn’t really dissect each dish but by and large they were palatable. What surprised me were the desserts. While there was a section of Indian sweets (probably with sattvic ingredients), there was another section of pastries, tarts, creme caramel, cup cakes and a chocolate fountain! I’m not aware of the entire list of sattvic foods, but I don’t think maida (refined wheat flour / white flour) and refined sugar belong in the sattvic food group. To top it, there was a take-away counter selling only cakes and pastries under the same sattvic brand!
Well, to my knowledge, sattvic foods are those which are easy to digest, beneficial for the body and promote mental health and clarity of thought. Water, whole grains, pulses, dals, most vegetables, fruits, nuts, honey and raw dairy foods (unpasteurised, non-homogenised) fall into the sattvic group.
If any of you have more information on sattvic foods, please do share. Thank you.
Membership to the Food Lovers Club run by Kripal Amanna, brought us a lovely hamper of some edible goodies and lots of dining privileges. One of the items in the hamper was virgin coconut oil with a salad dressing recipe which I have reproduced here with minor changes.
Coconut Oil Salad Dressing
Virgin coconut oil – 2 teaspoons
Water – 1 teaspoon
Salt – to taste
Crushed peppercorns – 1/2 teaspoon
Honey – 1 teaspoon
Lemon juice – 1/2 teaspoon
Method of preparation –
Mix salt in water. Add all the other ingredients and mix well. The dressing is ready. Use it while making a salad.
Note – Coconut oil does not contain cholesterol. It can be used like any other edible oil in small quantities.
We received a gift box of dark chocolates and the label said ‘no added sugar, made with organic jaggery’. I was happy to try this new product till I read the ingredients list. At the top of the list was maltitol (a sugar alcohol) which is a sugar substitute. Maltitol has about half the calories of white sugar and not as sweet as sugar. Large quantities of maltitol can have a laxative effect. The second ingredient listed was hydrogenated vegetable oil. Hydrogenated oils contain trans fat which are not heart-friendly. So, the 2 ingredients used in highest quantities in this new chocolate were not condusive to health! Then came the better ingredients like cocoa solids and organic jaggery! They seemed more like a consolation to health!! So the sweetness in this chocolate was from maltitol and jaggery, and hence the claim ‘no added sugar’.
‘No added sugar’ does not necessarily mean that there’s no other sweetening agent in a product. Sorbitol, maltitol, mannitol, honey, jaggery, high fructose corn syrup are some of the ingredients that taste sweet but are not sucrose (white sugar). So, beware of food products that make claims on labels.