Wednesday, 16 March 2016

7 Days of Colorful Palates

Anyone who has attempted kitchen duty will tell you that it’s not the actual cooking that is hard; it’s answering the question, “What’s for dinner tonight?”

With Holi right around the corner, we thought it’d be good to make things a little colourful! So here’s what you ought to do for every day of the Holi week.

An excellent mental guide to a nutritious diet is to follow the rainbow; that is to include natural produce of each colour in every meal. Not only will this offer variation in flavours, texture and appearance, it will also complete the required dietary quota. 


Making the Monday blues go away!
It’s Monday night and no one is in the mood to slave in the kitchen over an elaborate meal. Stir-fry to the rescue! (To make this work, ensure you pick up plenty of veggies when out shopping.) Quickly slice up some red and yellow bell peppers, string and blanch French beans and tear up bok choy leaves. It would be great to add some protein in here with some chicken breast, cooked and shredded beforehand.  Heat oil, sauté seasonings like garlic and Thai red chillies and then add the veggies and meat to the mix. You can also add in a dash of Sriracha sauce here to rid yourself of the Monday blues.



Who said Tuesdays are boring?
Treat yourself to a heart-warming meal on a dull Tuesday night. Let the coastal flavours of colourful vegetables cooked in a spiced coconut broth satisfy and nourish your loved ones. Featuring Vitamin A rich red carrots, cauliflowers, green peas and potatoes, a Kerala stew is comfort food taken to another level. Eat with steamed basmati rice and finish off with some baked yogurt topped with orange marmalade.




Salsa it up on Wednesday!
Spice up your Wednesday with the bright, fresh flavours and vivid colours of Mexican food. A super-quick and wholesome meal to rustle up, a Burrito is easily customizable allowing everybody to create their own dinner.  Lay out tortillas, refried beans, grated cheese, chopped tomatoes and onions, red and yellow bell peppers, avocadoes, lettuce, guacamole, sour cream and let everyone assemble as desired. Adding shredded cooked chicken is great for increasing the protein content and taste.




Get refreshed for an epic Thursday!
Opt for a light Thursday dinner with lots of fresh, raw fruits and veggies. Soups, sandwiches and salads are excellent options to eat tasty while allowing your body to detox. A winning combination is that of juicy orange segments with fresh blobs of mozzarella and the crisp bite of arugula. Drizzle some Balsamic reduction and top with toasted pine nuts or quickly cook thinly sliced bell peppers, mushrooms, onions, cucumber and tomato with olive oil, garlic, oregano, rosemary and then pack into a flatbread with crumbled feta for a filling Mediterranean sandwich. 




Jazz up that Friday!
Celebrate Friday night with a colorful Pasta salad. Cook fusilli according to directions and mix with basil pesto. Halve cherry tomatoes, black and green olives. Boil some corn kernels and add to the pasta for a wonderful salad that ticks all the nutrition boxes.




Go international on Saturday!
Head towards Thailand (metaphorically) on Saturday for a delightful, bold curry with multi-coloured veggies like yellow zucchini, sweet corn, and pea aubergines all swimming in a brilliant red sea that is Thai red curry. Serve with steamed jasmine rice for a complex and satisfying meal that is also great nutritionally.




Sunday was made to be a cheat day!
What’s a week without Pizza? Call it the end or the start, on a Sunday, use the pizza base as a canvas to paint a rainbow with some of these gourmet pairings. Chorizo roundels with roasted pumpkin and rocket leaves are a classy and colourful option. Pair red and green grapes over a bed of blue cheese and mozzarella with pine nuts for an unexpected twist. Another unusual and delightful combination is sliced apples, dried thyme leaves, crumbled cheddar and bacon.




So go ahead and enjoy a colourful week in the best way there is – with food! Happy Holi too all of you!

Thursday, 3 March 2016

What’s your Foodie Quotient?

2016 is without doubt an exciting time to be a food connoisseur! It is a time of incredible growth in all aspects with fantastic opportunities for both producers and consumers.

The team at Godrej Nature’s Basket has spent the last few weeks interviewing the top food experts in the country, from chefs, restaurateurs, food consultants, nutritionists and food writers to bloggers and food stylists, to grasp and effectively compile the top trends of the food scene in India.

It is a fairly unanimous opinion that the hottest things in the foodscape today are regional Indian food along with modern Indian food. This is very encouraging for the kitchens of our nation are bursting with unexplored delicacies that are slowly becoming known as people have started ‘hankering for a taste of the North East, authentic Andhra-ite curries, traditional Parsi delights beyond patra ni machhi, Bengali food and the communal Bohra thal.’ Along with this movement towards the food of our home, Chef Ajay Chopra believes that Korean BBQ and nouveau South American food will continue to gain popularity.


Our experts believe that ‘time will continue to remain the biggest factor influencing consumer decisions in 2016.’ This factor is easily visible in the increased demand for ready-to-cook meal boxes along with a concern to eating healthy.  


For those cooking at home, cooking techniques like baking, grilling and slow cooking will take precedence over unhealthy deep frying in 2016. Chef Ranveer Brar predicts that barbecuing and similar male, weekend cooking too will figure prominently. 


Alternate grains, edible flowers and exotic vegetables have emerged as the most popular ingredients of 2015 and our panel of experts believe in the coming months, more and more consumers will experiment and begin using these ingredients; buckwheat, amaranth, calendula, hibiscus, pea shoots and berries.  
       

Beverages like white and floral teas, cold pressed juices have led popularity polls while diets rich in omega 3 fatty acids and low in carbs are the favoured means of staying healthy. Flavoured cheese, exotic meats like duck and craft beer are other thrilling predictions to trend in 2016.          

        

Each of these categories have been researched and beautifully illustrated by our designers in one handy foodie recknoner of what to expect in the next year.  Full of helpful tips, tested recipes and fun facts, this year’s Foodie Quotient 2016 Guide will up your Food Quotient. You can easily download it here as a PDF http://bit.do/FQ2016Guide or pick up a copy at any of our stores.