Traditional Recipes for Pregnancy & Motherhood: An ideal guide for a crucial phase

Nichola Pais tucks into the spread of tasty and healthy recipes from across the country, in Traditional Recipes for Pregnancy & Motherhood

“Pregnancy is a crucial period in a woman’s life. During this phase, it is of utmost importance to provide the best nourishment to the mother and her baby. During lactation, a wholesome and balanced diet is vital – for the mother’s recovery as well as the health of her newborn.” With a mission of preparing a path for a woman’s wholesome journey to motherhood, Sonal Chowdhary and Supriya Arun shares 80 recipes from across India and 6 superfoods in their most useful and beautifully-photographed book, Traditional Recipes for Pregnancy & Motherhood.

This book also addresses the many misconceptions among the millennial generation regarding the customary pregnancy diet of our ancestors. “As an alternative, new mothers/ parents are drawn to Western food and lifestyle choices mainly because there is little to no awareness about the positives and negatives of our traditional fare,” they point out.

Rui Macher Jhol

An attempt to acquaint the reader with the wisdom of the traditional Indian diet and also lay down an ideal pregnancy and post-pregnancy diet, the book focuses on regional diets which contain therapeutic and nutritional ingredients. What’s more, the recipes strike the balance between nutrition and convenience – equally important in today’s fast-paced world.

There is relevance and scientific basis to the recipes, along with the benefits and uses of various herbs which are useful during pregnancy and lactation. The preparations are rich in various macro and micro-nutrients. The book also includes real-life pregnancy stories of women, and is a ready reckoner for women looking for a nutritious meal plan that is imbued with the healing, nurturing nature and legacy of traditional Indian cuisine.

The recipes are divided into region-wise sections, complete with a listing of the names of ingredients in English and the local language, quantities and beneficial uses. The Tamil Nadu section includes recipes for Legiyam Podi (Post-childbirth herb powder), Suraa Puttu (Scrambled White Shark Fish), and Sirukkerai Masiyal (Tropical Amaranth Curry). Recipes from Gujarat include the Bajra No Sheero (Pearl Millet Halwa), Digestive Munch and even a Special Tea. Offerings from Punjab and Himachal include Khairani (Dry Fruits in Milk Base), and Moong Dal Halwa (Split Green Gram Halwa).

Maharashtra’s specialities include Methichi Kheer (Fenugreek Seed Pudding), Alivche Ladoo (Garden Cress Seed Ladoos) and Lahsun-Tilachi Chutney (Garlic-Sesame Chutney). Sunthi Kanji (Dry Ginger Porridge), Sabsige Soppu Bhaat (Dill Leaves Rice) and Vaali Ambat (Malabar Spinach Curry) find mention in the Karnataka section, while Rajasthani favourites include Gond Ke Ladoo (Edible Gum Ladoo), Battissa Kada (Herbal Decoction) and Paan Masala (Herbs with Betel Leaves). Bengal, Odisha and the Northeastern states are represented by delicacies such Shukto (Mixed Vegetables in Poppy Seed Paste), Muri Ladoo (Puffed Rice Ladoo) and Rui Macher Jhol (Rui Fish in Gravy). Harira (Mixed Nuts Snack), Makhana Kheer (Fox Nut and Milk Pudding) and Bhuknoo Churan (Digestive Herb Mix) are among the recipes from Uttar Pradesh, while Muringaila Curry (Drumstick Leaf Curry), Uluva Lehyam (Fenugreek Halwa) and Manga Chammandi (Raw Mango Chutney) represent the taste of Kerala cuisine.

Makhana Kheer

This tome also includes healthy snack ideas for pregnant women and lactating mothers, which are rich in proteins, fats, carbohydrates, iron, vitamin B12, folic acid and calcium.

Authored by Sonal Chowdhary, a holistic nutrition consultant with specialisation in weight management, sports and clinical nutrition, and Supriya Arun, a nutrition and wellness consultant certified in clinical weight management and sports nutrition, Traditional Recipes for Pregnancy and Motherhood would make an ideal guide for eating that is both tasty and healthy at this crucial time in life.