Zero oil cooking, per se, is not really ‘cent’ percent oil free food.
It is the dishes cooked with about a teaspoon or a bit more of fat in it. For our Indian palates, which are so not used to such food, it is tough when one decides to convert to it. Firstly, it is not possible to give up oil in our diets within a day. This procedure has to be timed out.
Like, for instance, to start with, one can try having no butter or clarified oil on a daily dose of rotis. Then, slowly, less of oil content in our veggies and main course dishes can be incorporated. We can then give up having butter on our toasts and replace this snacking with a handful of nuts or a bowl of sprouts or so. Slowly, we can even wean off fried stuffed paranthas and have stuffed rotis instead, or better still, sandwiches with the same stuffing in them.
Naturally, there will be withdrawal symptoms which one has to cope up with. If a buttered parantha addict goes without them for a week, one can expect the next seven days to be replete with them or all hell will break loose with his or her internal system. So go easy with this diet plan.
The food substitutes have to be delicious ones like a tasty meal of salted oats or subwiches with nice stuffed veggies in them.
What saves the day is the number of cookery books available in the market today with zero oil recipes in them. One can pick up a few of these and get cracking!
Yumilicious spreads like peshawari kebabs, shahi paneer, shabnam curry, kaali daal, mirch makai ka salan, dhingri matar, handi channa, kandhari aloo and even continental items like veggies in tomato basil, cabbage rolls in white sauce and veggies baked in the green sauce, all can be whipped up with no oil.
Then comes, dealing with cross arguments like a basic amount of fat is essential for wear and tear of body tissues, especially in the case of women. In this event, what is it that should be done? It is wise to understand that fat is present in small quantities in most foods to some extent. Hence, it is best to free yourself from its clutches when it comes to actual cooking.
If a dish asks for a tablespoon of oil, try drizzling in only half of it. Also, it is best to switch to olive oil or rice bran oil, both known for their “good” saturated fats. If pricing is an issue, try mixing a few routine oils like groundnut oil, sunflower oil, mustard oil in somewhat equal proportions to make an oil mix. Use this as the food binder in place of going at it with a single oil.
Also, becoming health conscious when it comes to what we ingest is a life changing philosophy. It cannot be emphasized enough that just like one cannot give up a daily diet of seven cups of tea or coffee just within the wink of an eye, so is the case with fats.
It all starts with how you make up your mind. Begin with switching over from fried shahi tukras to simple bread dipped in a cup of milk.
See if you like the changeover. You will not, at first.
Mind conditioning is important. And so is the age old proverb that slow and steady wins the race. Do not substitute with foods which do not appeal. Just lessen the fat content in the same dishes. And then, do without it, is the actual trick that works.