By Nmami Agarwal
Maharashtra is one of the biggest commercial and industrial centre famous for its capital Mumbai and other famous cities like Nagpur, Pune, Aurangabad and Nashik. Located in the western part of India, it has a long stretch of coastline. The state has a typical monsoon climate, with hot, rainy and mild cold weather seasons. Talking about the food culture, use of wheat, rice, millet, vegetable, lentils, and fish is common in their cuisines. Another feature is the use of spices and herbs that make the foods mild to extremely spicy. This state definitely offers a culinary delight that you cannot wish to miss out.
It’s important that we know about the food culture of other regions, which in a way can give us an idea regarding the healthy food habits that region and even we can incorporate the same in our respective lives. So, let’s have a look at the dishes!
Agriculture In Maharashtra
Maharashtra- a leading state on the grounds of agriculture. The principal crops grown in Maharashtra are rice, jowar, bajra, mung dal, urad dal, tur dal, wheat, gram and other pulses including sunflower, groundnut (peanuts) and soybean are the major oil seed crops. Some important cash crops are counts on cotton, turmeric, sugarcane and vegetables.
Pulses mentioned above contains sky-scraping amounts of fiber protein, zinc, iron, folate, phosphorous and B-vitamins which provides thiamin and niacin. Incorporating half a cup of pulses in your diet per day can positively enhance the diet quality by mounting the nutritional intake. In addition to that, pulses have antioxidant and anti-carcinogenic effects, indicating to noteworthy anti-cancer effects. Also, improves serum lipid profiles and decreases the risk of cardiovascular disease and inflammation.
- Dalimbi Usal: Use of sprouts in this dish is always amazing and will always definitely be your favorite one from the state Maharashtra. Made with field beans/lablab beans sprout, this sweet, spicy, tangy, coconut based curry is an amazing tongue-tickler from the culinary delight of Maharashtra. Beans are the finest source of vitamin B complex and protein. Also, it’s easy to cook and nutritious for sure. This curry is served along with chapatti or rice.
- Pithale: Pithale is a besan based curry made with jowar or bajra. If you are bored of vegetables, this dish is the best one to try. Prepared in a day to day menu of a traditional Maharashtrian household. The consistency of the curry varies in different areas of the places. As the main ingredients are bajra and besan, this in a way gives a good dose of high protein and dietary fibre.
- Dodkyacha Bhaat: A dish can packed with satisfying and satiating flavor! Dodkyacha Bhaat is a dish prepared from rice and ridge gourd (torai) perked up with spices to give it a real aroma and taste to it. So, if you want to try Ridge gourd in a different way, this one can be a sure bet. Ridge gourd is extremely rich in dietary fibre and enriched with all the vital vitamins and minerals that are good for liver functioning and for sharp eyesight. So, next time you wish to skip ridge gourd, think twice!
- Thali peeth: Known to be Maharashtrian pancakes uses 4 fours that are- gram flour, rice flour, wheat flour and ragi mixed with onion, cumin powder, coriander powder and salt is mixed and made into soft dough and is cooked in a non-stick pan with less oil. It can be enjoyed as both, a main dish or as a snack. With the power of multi-grain, this one is packed with iron, folic and fibre.
- Ukadiche Modak: You cannot miss out modaks- the most famous and favorite sweet dish of the place. This traditional Maharashtrian ukadiche modak is made of rice flour and has a filling of a mixture of nutmeg powder, jaggery, poppy seeds and grated coconut. Steamed and this in a way is the best sweet dish of the region serving few a bit of nutrients along with sweetness.
- Rassa/pandhrais: So if you are in the coastal area you cannot forget the fish dish. Rassa/pandhrais- a non-vegetarian Maharashtra food can also be made from using chicken if preferred. Its origin can be traced to Kolhapur and is now famous all over Maharashtra, this juicy curry is made of yogurt and is spiced up equally. As it has fish we can be sure of getting omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins such as D and B2 (riboflavin).
- Sol Kadhi: A very popular Drink that is prepared with kokum in coconut milk. It’s common across Maharashtra and Konkan regions. Coconut milk spiced with green chillies, kokum and fresh coriander is full of flavors. Sol kadhi is served as an amuse-gueule and is hailed for its digestive qualities as kokum is antifungal and has antioxidant properties.
Over to you
Healthy eating should be an important factor in life. If you are busy or cannot understand the food choices, that you have to incorporate, do consult a nutritionist to make it easy, simple and healthy.