Saturday, March 3, 2012

Clay Pot Cooking

Clay Pot Cooking is one of the Ancient Cooking Techniques in an unglazed Clay Pot which has been soaked in water so as to release steam during the cooking process.
This technique is still followed in most Rural & some Urban parts of India like North India (Punjab, Uttar Pradesh), Central India (Madhya Pradesh), East India (Bihar, West Bengal), North East India (esp. Nagaland) & South India (Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Tamilnadu)
In many parts of Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh (Varanasi), West Bengal the Tea is served in a small Clay Pot (Kulhad/Kulhar/Shikora)
So as part of keeping up with this Old Tradition of ‘Real Clay Pot Cooking’ & also keeping in mind the Restrictions we have to face in present times, I wanted to incorporate some Recipes our Generation
Clay Pot is used to make Biryani, Curd, Dal Makhni, Saag, Kulfi are cooked on a Slow Fire for long hours together
Also used to Store Water, in South India it’s used in place of a Kal Chatti (means a Pot made of Stone) for Fish Curries, Mashed Greens (Kirai Masayil), Rasam
A popular Sour Stew (Vathal Kuzhambu) made with the Sun Dried & Pickled Green Berries in Tamil (Manathakkali) in English (Black Night Shade) in Hindi (Makoy)
Can replace with Sundakkai (Turkey Berries) or Fried Bitter Gourd (Karela) or Okra (Bhindi)

Be it Coconut Milk based Thai Curries or Cuisine from Africa, Asia, Mediterranean Region Clay Pot used to dominate!
Clay Pots still are prepared by the local Potters (Kumhaars) in India
There are so many benefits of a Clay Pot, they add a Distinctive Earthy Flavour to anything prepared or served in them, they are Environment Friendly unlike Plastic,
We also need to be aware that the Present Day Earthenware could contain poisonous Heavy Metals like Lead, Cadmium
My Grandmother used to have Aluminum, Brass, Copper, Hindalium & Stainless Steel Cooking Ware was used
The revival of Clay Pottery can have a huge impact in improving the Rural Employment..

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