Proteins, Fats, Carbohydrates and Minerals

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Protein is the big nutrient — the primary element in the growth and repair of body tissue (such as collagen fibres, which are one of the principal components of skin, muscle, bones and cartilage, among a host of other body parts). For this reason, children who are still growing need more protein per kilogram of body weight than adults. Anyone with an infectious disease, though, will also need increased protein, as will someone on an extreme diet, since the body may burn through accumulated fat and carbohydrate reserves and begin to pillage protein resources.
The problem with that is that proteins supply some 20 amino acids, about half of which are needed for normal growth and tissue renewal, and if energy - yielding nutrients are in short supply, amino acids may be used as energy sources. This can lead to what's known as protein-calorie malnutrition, a condition apparent in the stunted growth of Third World children, who may subsist almost entirely on starchy foodstuffs derived from cereal and root staples.
Foods high in protein — most meats, fish, eggs, dairy products — are the expensive foods of the comparatively rich. Surprisingly, though, most human diets around the world only vary from about 10 to 15 per cent protein content. The big difference is in the quantity of fats and carbohydrates — as high as 90 per cent carbohydrates in poor diets and as low as 40 per cent in better diets. The remainder, if any, of the diet is made up of fats, perhaps as much as 45 per cent among wealthy eaters.

Fats and carbohydrates, though low in amino acids, are our best energy source. Fats, such as oils and especially butter, have an extremely high energy content (that is, calories) but consumed in excess they can build up as hard deposits known as plaque in the arteries, as in artherosclerosis, one of the major causes of heart attacks. Because most fats are scarce in vitamins, they're called empty calories: They've generally been considered the chief contributor to body fat, an excess of which can be a real problem for people with osteoarthritis, though recent studies have questioned — with some justification — whether in fact fats are the real culprits in excess weight.
The other main source of body energy is the carbohydrate family — sugars and starches. Most of them are loaded with energy but contain relatively little protein. Thus, a high carbohydrate diet will be short on growth potential and leave the body ill-equipped to fight infections. Some starchy foods, such as potatoes, do have protein content (though less than whole-grain cereals) and vitamins, especially C and A. Before the terrible Potato Famine in 19th-century Ireland and Scotland, many crofters survived on little else.

Foods also contain a wide array of minerals useful to normal metabolic processes. You may have two or three pounds of calcium in your body — mostly in the skeletal system — as well as magnesium, which shares some of calcium's functions. Iron, an essential component of hemoglobin in the blood and myoglobin in muscles, is of special importance to menstruating, pregnant or lactating women; it's aided in its work by copper, while cobalt helps form red blood cells. The body is a veritable mineshaft of other exotic minerals, such as zinc, manganese, selenium and molybdenum, whose functions are varied but sometimes interrelated; all are important and require the appropriate food sources.

Excerpts from - http://www.dietitians.ca.

Effects of Cooking

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The food we prepare contains a mix of nutrients and minerals and the effects of cooking on these are as below



Proteins
Edible animal material, including muscle, offal, milk and egg white, contains substantial amounts of protein. Almost all vegetable matter (in particular legumes and seeds) also includes proteins, although generally in smaller amounts. These may also be a source of essential amino acids. When proteins are heated they become de-natured and change texture. In many cases, this causes the structure of the material to become softer or more friable - meat becomes cooked. In some cases, proteins can form more rigid structures, such as the coagulation of albumen in egg whites. The formation of a relatively rigid but flexible matrix from egg white provides an important component of much cake cookery, and also underpins many desserts based on meringue.

Liquids
Cooking often involves water which is often present as other liquids, both added in order to immerse the substances being cooked (typically water, stock or wine), and released from the foods themselves. Liquids are so important to cooking that the name of the cooking method used may be based on how the liquid is combined with the food, as in steaming, simmering, boiling, braising and blanching. Heating liquid in an open container results in rapidly increased evaporation, which concentrates the remaining flavour and ingredients - this is a critical component of both stewing and sauce making.



Fat
Fats and oils come from both animal and plant sources. In cooking, fats provide tastes and textures. When used as the principal cooking medium (rather than water), they also allow the cook access to a wide range of cooking temperatures. Common oil-cooking techniques include sauteing, stir-frying, and deep-frying. Commonly used fats and oils include butter, olive oil, sunflower oil, lard, beef fat (both dripping and tallow), rapeseed oil or Canola, and peanut oil. The inclusion of fats tends to add flavour to cooked food, even though the taste of the oil on its own is often unpleasant. This fact has encouraged the popularity of high fat foods, many of which are classified as junk food.

Carbohydrates
Carbohydrates used in cooking include simple sugars such as glucose (from table sugar) and fructose(from fruit), and starches from sources such as cereal flour, rice, arrowroot, potato. The interaction of heat and carbohydrate is complex.
Long-chain sugars such as starch tend to break down into more simple sugars when cooked, while simple sugars can form syrups. If sugars are heated so that all water of crystallisation is driven off, then caramelisation starts, with the sugar undergoing thermal decomposition with the formation of carbon, and other breakdown products producing caramel. Similarly, the heating of sugars and proteins elicits the Maillard reaction, a basic flavor-enhancing technique.
An emulsion of starch with fat or water can, when gently heated, provide thickening to the dish being cooked. In European cooking, a mixture of butter and flour called a roux is used to thicken liquids to make stews or sauces. In Asian cooking, a similar effect is obtained from a mixture of rice or corn starch and water. These techniques rely on the properties of starches to create simpler mucilaginous saccharides during cooking, which causes the familiar thickening of sauces. This thickening will break down, however, under additional heat

Improvements you can find!!!

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In my previous post I had mentioned about updating people on various cuisines of the world, their popular dishes and the recipes with ingredients needed and cooking instructions for that recipe
It suddenly struck me that understaning how to cook and what ingredients to use would not be enough. I thought, to create wonderful dishes for our friends and family to consume we need to have greater in depth knowledge about
- The concepts of cooking,
- Dietery requirements of people,
- The food pyramid and its importance,
- The ingredients required, regionwise
- The cooking utensils you would require

Although the basic need of the blog would be fulfilled we would have these additional information for the benefit of all humanity!!! We would have a list to help cover the essentials involved in cooking, certain tips and tricks to create masterpieces in cooking.
You can always choose to click on the above links to get that cuisine's popular dishes and recipes.
Please leave a comment to help improve the blog and to contibute recipes you may know!!

Mediterranean Cuisine

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COMING SOON WITH POPULAR DISHES AND THEIR RECIPES

English Cuisine

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American Cuisine

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Lebanese Cuisine

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Korean Cuisine

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Japanese Cuisine

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COMING SOON WITH THE POPULAR DISHES AND THEIR RECIPES

French Cuisine

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COMING SOON WITH THE POPULAR DISHES AND THEIR RECIPES

Mexican Cuisine

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COMING SOON WITH THE POPULAR DISHES AND THEIR RECIPES

Italian Cuisine

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Chinese Cuisine

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COMING SOON WITH THE POPULAR DISHES AND THEIR RECIPES

Punjab and Haryanan Cuisine

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Punjabi cuisine (from the Punjab region of Northern India and Eastern Pakistan). Punjabi cuisine can be non-vegetarian or completely vegetarian. It is widely popular however there is some ignorance in Western Cultures that Punjabi is cuisine is completely curry based. The level of spices can vary from minimal to very prevalent. One of the main features of Punjabi cuisine is its diverse range of dishes. Home cooked and restaurant Punjabi cuisine can vary significantly, with restaurant style using large amounts of clarified butter, known locally as desi ghee, with liberal amounts of butter and cream with home cooked concentrating on mainly upon wheat masalas (spice) flavourings. Though wheat varieties form their staple food, Punjabis do cook rice on special occasions. During winter a delicacy, Roh Di Kheer, is cooked using rice. Rice is cooked for a long time in sugar cane juice.
Within the state itself, there are different preferences. People in the area of Amritsar prefer stuffed parathas and milk products. In fact, the area is well known for quality of its milk products. There are certain dishes which are exclusive to Punjab, such as Mah Di Dal and Saron Da Saag (Sarson Ka Saag).
The food is tailor-made for the Punjabi lifestyle in which most of the rural folk burn up a lot of calories while working in the fields. The main masala in a Punjabi dish consists of onion, garlic and ginger. Tandoori food is a Punjabi speciality especially for non-veg dishes.


Tandoori Cuisine

Jammu and Kashmir Cuisine

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The state of Jammu and Kashmir features as a top most state in the map of India. This state is considered as a paradise for some inspite of the fact that this state is swarmed with anti indian terrorists. The state is not just a paradise for the tourists for its scenic beauty but a paradise also for food lovers. The state offers a variety of exotic recipes bearing a distinct seal of the state. Secret behind the mind-blowing cuisine of the state lies in the books of history which speaks of the invasion of Kashmir by Timur in the 15 th century AD. This resulted in the migration of hundreds of skilled cooks from Samarkand to cater to the royal tongue.


The descendants of these cooks gifted the state the unsurpassable tradition of Wazwan, the delectable aromatic banquet of Kashmir. Wazwan consists of 36 course meal, essentially, meat based prepared by wazas (cooks) under the supervision of Vasta Waza, the master chef. Kashmir excels in the preparation of non-vegetarian cuisine and more so in the meat based dishes with lamb being preferred over others. People of the state are liberal in the use of spices, condiments and curd. The medium of cooking is chiefly mustard oil. Another chararacteristic of Kashmir cuisine is the liberal dose of the expensive saffron or kesar, which is produced in the state. Rice forms the staple food of Kashmir. Three different styles of cooking prevail in the state as Kashmiri Pandits, Muslims and Rajput follow their own traditions and proscriptions in cooking. Kashmiri Pandits refrain from the use of onions and garlic, while Muslims avoid the use of asafoetida (hing) and curds. Variations in recipes can also be observed in the different regions of the state. Cooking pattern as seen in Ladakh differs to that Hindu Dogras. This is also due to change in locally produced crops.



Kashmiri Pundit Cuisine

Kashmiri Wazwan Cuisine

North Indian Cuisines

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The ultimate destination of foodies is the North Zone of India. There is absolutely no dearth of variety for a creative gourmet in this part of the country. The zone is fortunate to be the hub of some of the most exotic styles of cooking. Many of which are renowned all over the world and regarded as the most developed and refined of all culinary arts.
Most famous of all is the Mughal Cuisine. National, capital, Delhi is the place to enjoy this style in its best form. Known for their love for life and lavish styles, Mughals treated their gastronomic requirement with a lot of seriousness. They added a touch of royalty to the food and produced mouth watering taste with the generous use of spices, sausages, dry-fruits and butter. Roasted in tandoors, the meat dishes taste out of this world. Also important are kashmiri, thanks for their wazwans, the awadh cooking style,
Northern Indian cuisine has the following main schools of cooking:
Kashmiri
Punjabi
Rajasthani
Marwari
Gharwal and Pahari
UP
Awadh or Luchnawi

The main few states that stand out because of their wonderful additions to the world cuisines are
Jammu and Kashmir - Kashmiri Pundits Cuisine, Wazwan Cuisine
Punjab and Haryana - Punjabi Cuisine
Uttaranchal - Garhwal Cuisine and Kumouni Cuisine
Delhi - Mughalai Cuisine
Uttar Pradesh - Awadh or Lucknowi Cuisine
Rajasthan - Rajasthani and Marwari Cuisine

Few other interesting recipes

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