Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Whole Wheat Coconut Shevai ( Whole Wheat coconut noodles);Diabetes Friendly Thursday


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The Proud DFT Team brings Mother's Day Special this time. How fun is that? Many of us are bringing Chaat or Indian Street Food from our morher's delectable palate. Who says that Diabetics have to eat "No-Fun" food? Binge in and and Indluge. But hey...remember!! Portion Control is the key!



My mother is a very simple person. Simple pleasures, simple desires. Growing up, she instilled in us the appreciation of simple things in life. She taught us how to be happy with what we have. There is an adage in India that translates as " one should stretch his legs only as far as ones blanket allows". Why am I getting philosophical?? What I am trying to get at is also the fact that she also taught us how to eat healthy. She cooked simple wholesome meals. For breakfast there would be something nutritious, for lunch, it would be rice and one curry. For dinner, it would be kanji( rice porridge) with some vegetable on the side. To this date, my parents have no chronic health issues and do not take any medications. This I think is primarily due to her healthy dietary habits. She is a pure vegetarian. She cooks with very little oil. Half a liter of cooking oil can last her a whole month!! She only cooks with coconut oil and she only eats fresh vegetables.



So today as Mother's Day special DFT, I am bringing to you one of my mother's favorite breakfast items: whole wheat coconut Shevai  . What is this??  Where I come from, they make whole wheat noodles or string hoppers and sun dry them. When dried like this, they can be stored for years without going bad( just like how we have the rice noodle or pasta).





This is just the traditional way of doing it. Now this, like any pasta, when cooked in warm water, gets soft , and can be cooked as desired,again like any rice noodles or pasta. The only difference is that this is more healthier with whole grain wheat flour and no preservatives.


My favorite is the way my mom makes it : coconut Shevai. It is such a quick and simple way of providing a healthy nourishing  breakfast.



Servings: 2-3 (Serving size: 1 cup per person)



Ingredients:


Dried whole wheat Shevai : 2 cups
Water: 4 cups
Salt: 1/2 tsp
Coconut oil: 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds: 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves: 1 sprig
Urad dal( matpe bean lentil): 1 tsp
Green chilies: 2 small, slit lengthwise
Freshly grated coconut: 1/4 cup
Sugar: 1 tsp

Method:


Boil water with salt in a pot. When it boils, turn of the flame and add the dried Shevai  to the point in such a way that the Shevai is completely immersed in it. Close the pot and keep aside for 5 mins or until all the Shevai have turned whitish in color.

Drain and keep aside. Make sure that you don't soak the shevai for too long as then the whole dish will be mushy! The Shevai has to be al dente.Upon draining, if it looks a little clumpy, separate it using your fingers.

Heat coconut oil in a sauté pan/ kadai on medium heat. Add mustard seeds. Once it splutters, add the curry leaves, urad dal and green chilies. Saute for a few seconds.

Now add the drained Shevai and mix well. Add sugar and more salt if needed. 

Add freshly grated coconut reserving a little for garnish.Turn off the gas.

Garnish with the remaining coconut.



Serve hot .

May be served with accompaniments like banana, mixture, chips and even chutney.

Enjoy.

Cooking made easy:


There are several ways to ensure that the Shevai are not overcooked. The most important being not to soak it for too long. When you take out, it might look like it is not yet done, but the noodle will continue to cook even after draining due to the remaining heat retained in it.

If you fear that you have soaked the Shevai for too long and will become mushy, upon draining, run it under cold water. This will stop it from continuing to cook.

The whole wheat Shevai can also be cooked with the addition of vegetables like peas and carrots. This makes it even more healthier. It becomes more like a pulao when prepared in this manner.

Footnotes (Tip for healthy living):


Diabetes and carbs:  There is a myth in the general population that carbs are bad for diabetics and therefore people with diabetes should avoid all types of carbs!Carbohydrates per se are not bad. It is the amount and the type of carbohydrate that is consumed that is the culprit. The balance between how much insulin is in the body and how much carbohydrate is eaten determines the blood sugar level. There are three types of carbohydrates: 1.starches such as starchy vegetables like potatoes, peas and corn, dried beans and lentils and grains such as oats, barley and rice.
2. Sugars , could be naturally occurring like that in milk and fruits or added sugar like that in sweets and desserts.
3. Fiber : like that in beans and legumes, fruits and vegetables and whole grains like whole grain cereals, whole wheat pasta, whole grain breads and nuts.
Needless to say, it is important to eat the healthier carbs that are whole grain and fiber rich and to avoid carbs that are rich in sugar. Portion control is also the mainstay of a healthy diet.

References:
http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/food/what-can-i-eat/understanding-carbohydrates/make-your-carbs-count.html


Disclaimer:
I am not a nutritionist or dietitian. My knowledge and information is based on my research and reading from different resources. Please consult your doctor or dietitian before making any changes to your diet.


Other Entries from this week DFT featuring more Mother's Day Recipes:




Anu's fenugreek baskets with green chickpea salad

Shailja's papdi chaat

Vidhya's quinoa and masoor dhal bisibelebath

Prachi's lentil sprouts tikki

Chahat's Chnana Chaat

Apsara's cabbage and coriander brownrice and lentil adai

Swati's moong dal kaathi rolls

Sonal's jhaal mudi with papad chips.



Food for thought:

A mother's arms are made of tenderness and children sleep soundly in them. Victor Hugo.