Indian recipes have a worldwide presence. Its distinctive aroma and tangy taste have found a global following. Have you ever thought that prior to the popularization of electric appliances in Indian kitchen which appliances were used by the Home makers?
Jaipur Beat takes you down the memory lane to the time where our grannies used to make mouth watering succulent gastronomical dishes, without the help of any electrical appliance.
- Stone Mortar:
An ancient Indian predecessor to modern day grinder. A hollowed structure from within in which a stone is used to pound and later fine grind the material. This was specially used to makedosa orrava idli mix batter. Unlike today’s mixie the process to grind with this primitive tool was lengthy and laborious too. Needless to say, it is very rare nowadays to see such a spectacle.
Image from – http://ldinamoni.blogspot.in/
- Sil Batta
This grinding stone was used in a large number of Indian households. It is known as “Sil-Batta” in Hindi with Sil referring to flat stone and Batta referring to a cylindrical grinding stone. This grinding stone was primarily used to prepare green chutney of coriander or mint, or to mix dry spices used for making Indian curry. On one hand it is a good form of exercise for the arms, and secondly, it imparts the authentic taste to the freshly ground spices which in no way can be copied by any other kitchen aid.
But with the passage of time it has been replaced with the electric grinder/mixer for the convenience and to save time as well.
- Wooden Ice cream maker:
When Ice cream parlors were not a common thing even then our mother used to serve home made Ice creams. We are not talking about fridge here, but ice creams made from traditional wooden ice cream maker. The making of ice cream in itself was the celebration where every member was involved as the duty was assigned from the youngest to the eldest member to keep rotating the handle for churning. It definitely involves planning to organize the ingredients like rock salt, ice and making a mixture of milk. Not only this once it is ready it has to be consumed at the earliest. So at times you can’t even wait for the dinner to be served.
Image Via Google
- Brass Utensils:
Though modern science now reluctantly approves of cooking in brass utensils, but our forefathers knew about them and propagated their use. The modern day cooking utensils with chemical coating have failed to match the taste these age old utensils used to provide.Since brass being an alloy of copper and zinc was not considered safe for cooking and keeping cooked stuff, a coat of lead was provided in the interiors of these utensil with kalai a shining silvery metal. Getting “kalai” done on utensils was a ritual carried after every six months. It was not uncommon to hear the loud voice from Kalai Wala passing by on the road and inviting to get the kalai done on utensils.Thanks to pressure cooker, steel and other cookware to make this everyday’s sight a rare one now 😦
- Hamam Dasta:
This appliance very similar to Stone Mortar mentioned earlier is a competitor to the contemporary dry grinder. Made of metal, generally, cast Iron or brass this is used to grind the dry spices used in Indian cooking. As it is made up of metal it takes lots of effort to use this. No wonder, our grandmothers who worked endlessly in the kitchen were far stronger and powerful than us.
- Kanse Ke Bartan
An alloy very healthful was used by our ancestors to make utensils specially for serving food. A healthier option to melamine and acrylic crockery used these days . This is the reason why the royals of Rajasthan extensively used these utensils for serving food.
Indians had a tradition to have multi-course meal, but in a different manner. Instead of dishes served in a phased manner they had all of them served in one big platter with small bowls used to keep the items of the day’s menu. This system of serving the food is known as ‘Thali’. Apart, from daily use, Indian household uses thali made of Silver in honor of the guest and to flaunt their opulence.
Though these appliances have lost the race of extinction against modern ones, their relevance will remain for the people who have taste bud for traditional taste.