Turmeric-based recipes are gaining popularity on social media. From wellness shots and ice cream to pickles and pizzas, there are several delicious ways to incorporate turmeric into your daily dishes.
Entrepreneur Shilpi Kulshrestha, co-founder of Prean Organics, Gurugram, understood the health benefits of this spice and put it to use. “During the COVID-19 pandemic, we began crafting turmeric pickles with a focus on enhancing immunity. This endeavour has been a delightful culinary adventure and a creative way to utilise the spices rich in health benefits,” Kulshrestha told Happiest Health.
Health benefits of turmeric
Turmeric is no ordinary spice – Indeed it is often celebrated as the culinary star in curry. It also became an internet sensation called golden milk when people began mixing it with milk. It is the key to combating inflammation, improving immunity, and safeguarding your well-being.
But that is just the tip of the spice-berg! Furthermore, turmeric dazzles with a multitude of benefits, and at the heart of it lies its rich antioxidant profile.
“Turmeric has been used for years in Indian cooking and in ayurvedic therapy as it is known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties,” says Varsha Abhishek, nutritionist, clinical dietitian, founder at Mekosha Nutrition and Yoga Studio, Bengaluru.
This herb helps fight allergies and infections and boosts our immunity. It can be used to manage allergic rhinitis, indigestion, urinary infections, colds, cough, fever, skin issues like acne pigmentation and autoimmune conditions, she adds.
Turmeric owes its potent medicinal properties to its primary flavonoid, curcumin. This essential component is responsible for delivering a comprehensive range of benefits offered by this spice. Curcumin serves as a bioactive compound with abundant medicinal properties. It regulates cholesterol levels, manages blood glucose, aids in mood balance, and provides protection against oxidative stress, says Abhishek.
According to recent research published in the journal BMJ Evidence-Based Medicine, the curcumin found in turmeric helps to manage dyspepsia and helps reduce excess stomach acid.
Adding turmeric recipes to your diet
You might be wondering how to include turmeric recipes in your diet. Worry not; we have got you covered with a simple recipe to incorporate this golden goodness. Moreover, most of the health benefits of turmeric can be found in this turmeric pickle as the preparation process involves minimal alteration.
- 1 cup fresh, cleaned and sliced yellow turmeric roots
- 1/4 cup finely chopped mango ginger (if available) or ginger (this can bring an extra flavour to the pickle)
- 8-10 long green chilies
- 2 lemons juiced – ¼ cup
- 2 tablespoons mustard oil
- 1 tablespoon rock salt
- ½ teaspoon asafoetida (hing)
- 1 tablespoon split mustard seed
- 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 pinch sugar
Method for making turmeric pickle
- Thoroughly rinse and then peel the fresh turmeric root and ginger.
- Now steam the turmeric for 20 minutes. When cooled, dice them into very small cubes (use disposable kitchen gloves to avoid staining).
- Take the green chillies, remove the stems, and cut them into small half-inch pieces. Chop the ginger into fine slices.
- In a frying pan, lightly toast the fenugreek and mustard seeds for about 1 to 2 minutes. Allow them to cool, and once cooled, gently crush them.
- Heat the mustard oil in a separate frying pan. Add the crushed mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, salt and asafoetida to the oil. Switch off the stove.
- Along with it add the chopped turmeric, ginger and green chillies. Add 2 tablespoons of water. Mix the ingredients thoroughly.
- Let the mixture cool down completely. Then add the lemon juice and a pinch of sugar.
- Transfer it to an airtight glass container, then keep it in a dry place for 2 days.
- Enjoy your homemade turmeric pickle!
Note: For better results, use mustard oil and a pure lemon infusion instead of vinegar as your preferred ingredients.
It is completely safe to use a few pieces of turmeric daily. Although turmeric is considered safe when consumed as a spice (which is usually in very small quantities) in various culinary preparations, there have been side effects of using turmeric therapeutically or as a supplement. Experts recommend that it is always important to consult a healthcare professional before taking turmeric/curcumin supplements to avoid untoward complications.