India is a culturally diverse country, with each region offering its own distinct cuisine and flavours. The variety of ingredients and spices make the Indian meal wholesome. But for quite some time now, the traditional food has been put down and called unhealthy. And people are going for alternatives. For instance, instead of white rice, many are opting for brown rice, potatoes are being replaced with sweet potatoes, and many are using olive oil to cook Indian food. We speak to celebrity chef Ranveer Brar to know about the current food trends and his take on fitness.
Mindful Eating Many call themselves foodies and like to try different cuisines. But while doing this, they are not conscious of the fitness factor. The chef says, “I think the definition of a foodie is quite broad. Over the years, it has come to be associated with someone who eats a lot, but there are other aspects of being a foodie. I think, mindful eating is important.”
Many follow fancy diets like intermittent fasting or Keto Diet as they feel they can’t attain their health goals with the help of locally grown food. “Why not?”, wonders Ranveer. “I think all the traditional recipes are based on ancient wisdom. Actually, the definition of healthy eating has changed a lot. Health food needs to be redefined. What really matters is not the food that has exotic healthy ingredients. For me, it has more to do with understanding that health and well-being are correlated. I believe the soul won’t be happy if the body isn’t happy. Eat for the broader perspective of the self,” says the celebrity chef.
Chef@workAs a chef, does he face any challenge of coming up with alternative ingredients and dishes for people who are into and fitness? “I think initially it is challenging for both the chef to cook and people to consume different food, though, it is easy to overcome. Also, I feel that swapping food items can have an effect on health in the long run. It makes us more mindful about food,” says the chef who believes that the state of mind one cooks with also reflects in the food.
Being a chef is not an easy task, one has to be around food 24X7. With cooking and tasting new cuisines, it can be difficult to maintain fitness, but Ranveer does it all like a pro. He swears by yoga and kalaripayattu when it comes to his fitness, apart from hitting the gym regularly. “Yoga and kalaripayattu help in instilling mindfulness which translates into mindful eating, this in turn helps in taking care of bigger problems,” he says. “Also, when it comes to my daily meal, it looks like a bit of things from places wherever I travel to. I prefer to have more locally grown stuff, he adds.”
Sharing a diet hack for Sakal Times readers, the chef says, “Our diets have become too refined, like refined and processed flour, sugar and other products. We have to un-refine it.”
And the one comfort food he completely banks on is Khichdi.
Figs and Banana SmoothiePrep Time: 10 minServes: 2
GRILLED PANEER, VEGETABLES, QUINOA & LETTUCE WRAPPreparation Time: 20 minCooking Time: 20 minServes: 2
Ingredients For Grilling
For Wrap (assemble)
GRILLED CHICKEN AND MOROCCAN COUSCOUS SALAD Preparation Time: 25minCooking Time: 15minServes: 4
Ingredients For Chicken
For Couscous salad
— Recipes by Ranveer Brar