You must have been told this many times over when you were young, “Eat vegetables, they are good for you.” And remember when you didn’t like that bowl of lauki or karela or one of those other greens on your plate and yet you were made to eat them – why, because they were good for you.
At Holachef kitchen we went back to the same philosophy that we all grew up on at home. Our chefs follow cooking techniques that are good for you!
Before we get into details of what conspires at Holachef kitchen every day, here’s a brief explanation of what food preparation is all about and you will be surprised to know that cooking is but a small part of the entire process.
To make something which is fit for consumption requires selection of right ingredients, measurement of these ingredients in the most suited proportion and combining these ingredients in such an orderly procedure and with appropriate technique so as to achieve the desired results. Hence, it is safe to say that food preparation includes cooking but is not limited to it.
The choices we make at every step of food preparation decides the amount of nutrients retained in the dish being prepared. Thus, it is of extreme importance that we understand and can differentiate the good practices from the bad ones.
Here’s what our chefs follow at Holachef kitchen to make certain that the food presented to you for consumption has been made with the most suitable process:
1) Procurement of the freshest produce
The vegetables and fruits utilized in cooking are procured directly from the main marketplace of farmers soon after they arrive in thebazaar, fresh from the fields. The raw material thus acquired is then put in cold storage for a few hours till the kitchen is prepped for the day. Before the ingredients are utilized, each variety of vegetables / fruits is washed and cleaned thoroughly in salt water and with Suma tablet. This detaches them from any undesired particles that there may be. They are then cleaned again in an automated vegetable and fruit washing equipment which gives them a rigorous swirl in fresh water. This ensures that the fresh produce is thoroughly rinsed and is ready to be used for cooking.
2) Skin on
It is a well known fact that peels of vegetables and fruits have a high concentration of nutrients in most cases. Depending on the type of vegetable, the peel or the skin of the food can be a rich source of fiber, anti-oxidants, calcium, vitamins and various other nutrients. At Holachef, we keep the skin on for as many vegetables and fruits as possible, keeping in mind the dish it is being used for.
3) Steamed, not boiled
Did you know that the longer the vegetables are cooked, the more nutrients they lose? It is for this reason that we apply techniques which, while fully cooking the raw vegetables, also retain nutrients. Steaming vegetables (instead of boiling) allow us to cook the vegetables with the heat without making them soggy. In fact, steamed vegetables are crispier and preserve original texture and flavor to a large extent.
A simple example that deserves to be mentioned here is that of potatoes. Have you ever wondered why potatoes from the Holachef kitchen don’t feel as ‘soft’ as the boiled potatoes that you might have eaten at home? The answer is simple: boiling robs the potatoes of their texture, maximum nutrients and even leaves them slightly overcooked. Dull flavor is another result of such a cooking method. Steaming them helps us avoid these after-effects.
4) Big cuts to retain maximum nutrients.. and freshness
Chopping whole vegetables into really small pieces presents the risk of dehydration of the vegetable, flavor loss, texture loss and above all, nutrient loss too. Basically, finely chopped vegetables serve little or no purpose if not consumed soon enough as they tend to lose freshness and all benefits very quickly.
Hence, to keep the vegetables at Holachef kitchen fresh and to ensure they present maximum advantage in their consumption, our food preparation process maintains large cuts as much as possible.
5) The cooking itself
After all the preparations are done in the right manner, the food is cooked with the requisite spices and other ingredients based on recipes by expert chefs. The chefs standardize these recipes to ensure that the taste is authentic and palatable. The chefs oversee the exact proportion in which the ingredients need to be blended and the steps that are required to be followed in strict precision.
This is followed by packing of food as per standard quantity and combinations. The packaged boxes are then dispatched as per the orders received after QA/QC.
Thus concludes the cooking process at Holachef every single day! So while you bite into your next Holachef meal, remind yourself that it’s good for you!