Even before the pandemic struck, the focus of diners was shifting to healthy food, and in this time of COVID-19 crisis, it has increased manifold. According to many restaurateurs and chefs in Kolkata, not only diners visiting the restaurants but those ordering from home are also asking about the ingredients to ensure they are eating healthy food.
Read: Recipes to Boost Your Immunity Part 2
It's not just about immunity-building ingredients, a hygienic approach to handling them is also important, pointed out Executive Chef Krishna Khetle of one of Kolkata’s newest restaurants, Zobet. Besides providing a clean and sanitised environment for maintaining a safe dine-in process, “We are also using UV-C Rays sanitiser to disinfect all the utensils and cutleries before using them. We are also washing our vegetables in sumo tablets and procuring all our perishable products by FSSAI approved vendors.”
According to the chef, they have been incorporating nutrient-rich food to the menu, which also helps in adding taste and flavour, such as lemon juice (source of Vitamin C); garlic (said to boost the number of virus-fighting T-cells in the bloodstream); quinoa, which is an ancient grain and complex carbohydrate, said to boost gut health; spinach (vitamin C, antioxidants, beta-carotene); walnuts (said to prevent colds), and more.
He shared with us two of their immunity-boosting recipes:
Mr Lean Salad
1 cup dry quinoa
1 cup couscous
20 Gms sultana raisins
30 Gm olives
1.5 cups water
Salt and pepper to taste
3 cups chopped fresh spinach
1.5 cups tomatoes
1/3-1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup chopped green onion
Lemon dill feta dressing:
Juice of 1 large lemon
1/4 cup avocado oil
1/2 tbsp white wine vinegar
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp dried dill
First rinse and drain the quinoa using a mesh strainer or sieve. Bring a small pot to medium heat and lightly toast the quinoa to remove any excess water, stirring often. This step is optional but really adds to the nuttiness and fluff factor of the quinoa.
Next add your water, set burner to high, and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer, covered with the lid slightly ajar, for 12-13 minutes or until quinoa is fluffy and the liquid has been absorbed.
Pout the same warm water and couscous in a bowl, cover with clean film and leave it for some time
While the quinoa cooks, use this time to prep remaining ingredients.
For the dressing, combine all the ingredients listed in a small bowl and whisk together or add all the ingredients to a lidded mason jar and shake well.
Once the quinoa is ready, fluff with a fork and season with salt and pepper, to taste. For a chilled salad, chill your quinoa in the freezer for 10-15 minutes before serving.
Add chopped spinach, corn, and tomatoes, sultana raisins and feta cheese. Whisk/shake dressing once more then pour over salad. Mix well and serve at room temperature or chilled.
Tandoori Soya Chaap
1/4 cup hung curd
2 tsp ginger garlic paste
2 tsp Kashmiri red chilli powder
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp tandoori masala
1 tsp chaat masala
1/2 tsp black pepper powder
Salt (to taste)
1/2 tsp garam masala powder
1 tbsp kasuri methi
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp fresh cream
1 tsp lemon juice
4-5 sticks soya chaap
1/4 cup onion (sliced)
1 tsp lemon juice
2 tsp green chilli (chopped)
1 tsp chaat masala
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp fresh cream
Remove the stick from the chaap and cut it into small pieces.
Marinate soya chaap with the tandoori marination (hung curd, Kashmiri red chilly, and ginger garlic paste, coriander leaves, green chilly, mustard oil, tandoori masala, and salt and garam masala
Cover the pan and keep aside for 30 minutes.
Thread the chaap in skewers.
Brush generous amount of butter, flip the chaap, turn it and cook all the sides till it is golden brown, about 5-8 minutes
Tandoori soya chaap Is ready. Serve with mint chutney and kachumber salad.
Note: If using dried soya chaap, soak them in water so that they get rehydrated. Then use them in the recipe.