WRITTEN  by London  Swaminathan

Date: 26 JULY 2019

British Summer Time uploaded in London – 8-50 AM

Post No. 6681

Pictures are taken by London swaminathan 
((posted by AND

Few years ago, I wrote in this blog that India is the land of highest number of food items. It was part of my Deepavali Research article (the talk I gave at Harrow Desis Diwali Festival). I counted over 160 sweet items/dishes. I gave the proof for my research as well. Every week I used to go to Willesden Green Library in London and visit the cookery section. The shelf on cookery books had more books on Indian cookery than any other country. When I did some statistical research through the index of many country’s cookery books, I arrived at the conclusion that INDIA HAS THE LARGEST NUMBER OF FOOD ITEMS IN THE WORLD. Every state, even every big city, has its own speciality.

Recently (July 10 and 11, 2019) I went to Bangalore to attend a wedding. On two days I counted over 60 items, leave alone the desserts. Some mouth- watering dishes are pictured here (all pictures are taken with my poor I pad)—


Long live Vegetarians .

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1 Comment

  1. The typical Madrasi wedding lasts 1.5 days – even in the now shortened version: from the previous evening to the reception and dinner on the wedding day. [ Nowadays, most people have the reception on the previous evening, to save on hall rental.] This involves a minimum of snacks twice , a breakfast, three full meals. The food arrangements are now given on contract to professional caterers, who have branches in many parts of India. The Madrasi community has also become very cosmopolitan. This combination results in a huge spread of nice items from all over India. Some caterers do give out small menu cards for each session. The items are mind boggling, if also mouth watering. Even in the paan, there are two/three varieties. Remember the song from the old movie Maya Bazaar, 1956 about marriage feast, sung by Tiruchi Lokanathan, lip-synced by the inimitable S.V.Ranga Rao? கல்யாண சமையல் சாதம் , காய் கறிகளும் பிரமாதம்…etc? As you have said, this is a great tribute to the art , craft and science of Indian vegetarian cookery. We do enjoy the festivity and the feast, even if it is a bit extravagant! A marriage feast is remembered for many years!

    However, the disturbing part is the waste that invariably accompanies such large scale arrangements. Some of which is unavoidable ( due to excess preparation), but much of it is also wanton, as our people have a tendency to waste. This is simply due to lack of self discipline. It is so sad to see so much food going waste.
    But our wedding feasts also involve other kinds of waste- paper cups and plates, plastic water bottles,, paper napkins, etc.
    Not only at marriage feasts, our people waste food everywhere. I have seen food given out as Prasad in Tiruvannamalai and Chidambaram at festival times being thrown away, and lying in heaps on the road. One ISKCON temple in Bangalore used to serve a mini meal as prasad but it led to waste. They started charging Rs.30 per prasad plate, and the waste is stopped!.
    “Annam na nindyat ” , exhorts our Upanishad. How nice it would be if we all followed it in spirit!

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