Well, this was inevitable. I had to write about it so that it would serve as a reminder to me that i need to shed off some weight. Despite making umpteen resolutions to start loosing the extra 10 pounds that i have gained after coming to the U.S. of A., i have failed. One reason being that i am not regular about exercising. Dieting, as you might have guessed by now, is not an option for a food lover like me. I have a sweet as well as spicy tooth. So for me resisting cheese raviolis, burritos, quesdillas, french fries and scrumptous delicases like cheesecakes, tiramisu, chocolate cakes, frappacinos, puranpolis requires quite an effort. But there is a way out, for where there is a will, there is a way. If i cant diet and i am not a staunch supporter for dieting, i can atleast replace the high calorie food by a low calorie one or atleast cut down on the amount of high calorie food that i eat. And that is what i have been doing the past couple of weeks. When the urge to eat something with high caloric content begets me, i look for similar options with no or low fats and calories in it. And if finally the urge overpowers me, i just go ahead and eat it, albeit only once a week.
The Indian vegetarian diet is a whole meal in itself, especially Maharashtrian diet. There is a specific pattern of placing different preparations in a dish. On the right hand side, you serve the vegetables, with the gravy ones being placed below the dry ones in a circle to avoid mixing. Similarly you start on the left hand side with the salt, then place a slice of lemon, then any pickle, dry chutney or koshimbir/ salad. At the top of the plate you place the curry in a small bowl. In the center you place a small spoonful of rice with some ghee and varan (plain boiled toor dal) and place a puri or poli below it with a ladoo (only on special occasions). To finish up, a glassful of buttermilk in the end. The first servings are small ones so that you dont waste food if you dont like it, but can have more helpings if you do. This diet provides you with a good mix of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals.
While researching about the nutrition factor of the mouthwatering dishes that i write about, i came across a couple of good websites which provide a calorie and nutrition calculator to keep a watch on the amount of calories provided by different kinds of food. These are the links to the websites:
http://www.nutritiondata.com/ (i liked this the best)
http://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp/search/ (this ones from the USDA)
A search for a particular food ingredient gives you a vast information on the food pyramid, the nutrition and calorie content, on the good and the bad about the particular food and nutrition balance indicator. Given below is an example for tomatoes, red, ripe and cooked.
I will be updating the calorie information in addition to the nutrition information that i include in my posts. And yes pictures of the dishes that i prepare..... Till then
have a good weekend