Himachal Pradesh presents anthropological, cultural, environmental and topographical diversity. Its reflection is seen in the variations of architecture of houses, clothing styles, food and food habits. The variations in availability of raw materials, environmental conditions clubbed with the time tested traditional knowledge and wisdom have made the people of different regions of this hill state to formulate, develop and perpetuate the consumption of a wide range of traditional foods and beverages unique to its places since ages. Bhatooru, siddu, marchu, seera, chilra, manna, aenkadu, sepubari, patande, doo, baari, dosha, malpude, babroo, bedvin roti, madrah, tchati, churpa, sura, chhang, kinnauri, angoori, chulli, lugri, arak/ara, rak, chukh and pickles (e.g. brinjal, lingri, bidana, peach, pear, plum, tomato, bottle gourd, etc.) made from different fruits and vegetables, etc. are some popular traditional products that are unique to the tribal and rural belts of Himachal Pradesh. Some of these products, e.g. bhatooru, chilra and tchati constitute staple food in rural areas of the state while others are prepared and consumed during marriages, local festivals and special occasions, and form part of the sociocultural life of hill people. However, the production of these foods and beverages is largely limited to household level.
Keywords: Traditional foods, Traditional beverages, Himachal Pradesh
First humans arrived in what is today known as Portugal about 10,000 BC, entering between the shore and the west end of the Pyrenees.
In 2,000 BC the Iberians arrived, maybe from North Africa. Then the Celts arrived and at the same time, a handful of Germans (who were farmers) with wagons for transporting what they needed. They settled in the North where forests were rich and abundant and wild game, honey and even shellfish was added to the menu. Nuts and chestnuts were gathered, roasted and used to make bread.
The inhabitants of Portugal thrived and so foreigners arrived, settled and introduced more foodstuffs, more habits and more traditions. Then Celtiberians and Lusithanians arrived. Then Romans conquered Iberia. They introduced olives, onions and garlic, 3 ingredients which are indispensable in Portuguese cuisine. The Moors arrived in Spain in 711, planning to invade Europe but they pretty much stuck to the south, the Algarve and Alentejo. The Moors brought new irrigation systems, turned barren areas into rich agricultural land where they, very successfully, planted almond, fig and citrus trees. It was at this stage that new ingredients in the form of rice and spices were also introduced and the locals were taught fascinating new cooking techniques.
Later, Columbus went on the acquisition trail and he brought back spices like coriander, saffron and ginger as well as potatoes, tomatoes, peppers and Portuguese food took on another dimension.
Fascinated by the east, Vasco da Gama took a trip and discovered the sea route to India and the far east, bringing back even more exotic spices. It was on these trips that the famous bacalhau and cured pork became standard fare for sailors on the long voyages to the far east.
2. Functional foods from plant sources
Overwhelming evidence from epidemiological, in vivo, in vitro, and clinical trial data indicates that a plant-based diet can reduce the risk of chronic disease, particularly cancer.
These biologically active plant chemicals, are now known as phytochemicals or plant secondary metabolites.
Tomatoes have received significant attention because of interest in lycopene, the primary carotenoid found in this fruit, and its role in cancer risk reduction.
Is one of the main ingredients of Mediterranean cuisine Mediterranean cuisine (of which PORTUGUESE cuisine is a VERY GOOD example) is a vegetable-dominant cuisine. The most prevalent ingredient is olive oil. Eggplant, artichokes, squash, tomatoes, legumes, onions, mushrooms, okra, cucumbers, and a variety of greens are served fresh, baked, roasted, sautéed, grilled and puréed.
Garlic is likely the herb most widely quoted in the literature for medicinal properties. The health benefits of garlic are numerous, including cancer chemopreventive, antibiotic, anti-hypertensive, and cholesterol-lowering properties.
Module 8: Food Chemistry, Nutrition, and Traditional Foods Molecules of Food: Carbohydrates
6-C rings, 5-C rings
Mono-saccharides (sugar, fructose) Dissacharides (lactose, sucrose) Polysaccharides (starch, fibre, glycogen)
Carbohydrates are assimilated in the body as “mono-saccharides” following digestion
Glucose: Body’s Primary Fuels
Molecules of Food: Lipids and Fats
Fats: Large biological molecules, diverse compositions, insoluble in water (i.e. non-polar in nature)
Fatty acids (assimilable form)
Triglycerides (in blood)
Phospholipids (cell membranes)
Sterols (e.g. cholesterol)
Source of energy (during sustained activity)
Structure of cell membrane
Free Fatty Acids (one chain)
Unsaturated (e.g. Omega-3, Omega-6)
Long-chain fatty acids (12+ carbons) are abundant in meats and fish
Short-chain fatty acids (12 carbons or less) are abundant in dairy products
Cold-water fish are rich in essential omega fatty acids
Unsaturated fatty acids, when cooked, change conformation to a “trans” shape (which tend to accumulate in blood vessels)
Unsaturated fats are more prone to react with oxygen, causing rancidity (common in stored fish)
Phospholipids are “modified” triglycerides where one fatty acid chain is replaced by a phosphate group
Soluble in water
Important in cell membrane
Multiple rings of carbon
Best-known sterols: cholesterol (the building block for all other sterols)
Bile acids, some hormones, Vitamin C
Absorption of Lipids
Fat breakdown occurs in intestines
Smaller units: fatty acids, glycerol, and sterols
Cholesterol and triglycerides are non-polar, hence need “lipoproteins” to carry them in the bloodstream
Molecules of Food: Proteins
Chains of Amino Acids
Diverse roles: enzymes, hormones, regulators, molecular transports, antibodies, building tissue like muscles, and energy
Made up of C, H, O, N, other ions
Four components around a central carbon (C)
An amino group (-NH2)
An acid (-COOH)
A functional group
Molecules of Food: Vitamins
Essential organic compounds to ensure proper metabolism
Little caloric value
Water-soluble vitamins (enter directly into bloodstream)
Fat-soluble vitamins (must be transported by carrier proteins)
Several diseases are associated with vitamin deficiencies
Caloric Contents of Food Molecules
Subsistence Food Provisioning
Nutrition for indigenous people in the Arctic is changing rapidly; from 100% to <50% “country food”.
Presence of larger communities, presence of “Co-op” or “Bay” stores, and an increasing cash economy contribute to changes in feeding habits.
Lastly, hunting activities are costly when modern technologies are used à the “pay off” of traditional food provisioning is decreasing.
Subsistence activities: The hunting, fishing, and gathering of local foods for consumption, sharing, and trade or barter.
e.g. caribou, whales, seals, marine birds, waterfowls, eggs, fruits (largely a carnivore diet)
Note: Commercial trapping or fishing is generally not viewed as traditional food gathering; although they could be traditional activities.
Example of Subsistence Food Economy
Inupiat households in Barrow, Alaska
Production vs. Sharing
Food provisioning is crucial, but sharing is an intricate part of subsistence
Sharing touches upon all members of a community, and represents a way of establishing and maintaining ties to family and within the community at large (e.g. support of elders, non-hunting members)
Sharing is viewed as part of the “culture” of indigenous society
Quality Food: Arctic Char
Quality Food: Beluga
Quality Food: Caribou
Quality Food: Muskox
Quality Food: Polar Bear
Quality Food: Ring Seal
What is special about a subsistence diet in the North?
“Çalışmadan, yorulmadan ve üretmeden, rahat yaşamak isteyen toplumlar; evvela haysiyetlerini, sonra hürriyetlerini daha sonra da istiklal ve istikballerini kaybetmeye mahkumdurlar.” Mustafa Kemal ATATÜRK