“A man does not live on what he eats, an old proverb says, but on what he digests.”
– Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin
Did you know that the world record for the largest pumpkin is 2300 lbs! That’s a whole lot of pumpkin – which also means a whole lot of vitamin A, Vitamin C and potassium, which are the main nutritional benefits of pumpkins and squashes.
The pigment that’s present in the orange-yellowish flesh of these winter squashes is known as beta carotene. When we enjoy these gourds (the darker the flesh the more nutritious), the beta-carotene is either converted into Vitamin A (eye, skin and bone health), or it acts as an antioxidant (cancer, inflammation) to help protect the body’s cells from the damaging effects of harmful free radicals.
Even when they’re out of season, Pumpkins and squashes can easily be stored in root cellars and eaten all winter long. I made a delicious Indian-themed pumpkin stew with calcium-rich white northern beans that I think you’ll really enjoy (click here for the recipe). And the best part of the dish? The topping – which is known as Tadka.
What is Tadka?
Tadka is a method widely used in Indian cuisine, in which spices are heated in oil or ghee. The spice mixture is then added to a dish to enhance flavour, improve digestibility as well as the absorption of the ingredients in the dish. You’ll notice that Tadka can includes spices such as: cumin, fennel, coriander and mustard seeds – 4 spices that are great for digestion, assimilation and boosting metabolism. It’s good to experiment with different combinations to see what flavour profiles you can come up with.
Tasty food and healthy food are not mutually exclusive