When it comes to the Indian food culture, fried snacks are an essential part. Munching on deep-fried samosas, kachoris or a crunchy chakli is a food experience to which, we can all relate. Whether it’s home-made or ordered in from your favourite snack vendor in the neighbourhood, we’re all guilty of this unhealthy indulgence.
We all recognise that frequently consuming deep-fried foods can have an adverse effect on our health. These fried foods reduce the amount of natural nutrition of the ingredients. When the foods are deep fried in oil at a high temperature, this may cause the food to convert to carcinogens (cancer-causing substances).
Yet it’s hard to say no to that strong craving. So, why not turn them into healthy snacks? A good way to keep indulging, without any compromise on health, is simple: don’t fry them. Bake them.
Baked snacks wouldn't just be healthier, but as delicious as the oily, fried treats you've been having. It’s a cooking technique, where the food is dry heated in an oven and the dry heat is modified by steam. Baking requires a very little oil, so it does not cause any reaction in foods, making them healthier.
Before we tell you about some popular baked healthy snacks, here are some benefits of baking vs frying:
• More efficient: baking is less time-consuming and a lot less messy compared to frying. No excess oil, no splatters and no unnecessary utensils. All you need to do is place your snacks in the oven and they’re cooked through.
• Low on fat: with less oil comes less fat. Baking requires a minimum amount of oil in comparison to frying. In fact, it can be done without any oil too.
• Improves flavour: Baking food items doesn’t compromise the flavour, making the food delicious and healthy.
Let’s take a look at some of the most popular Indian healthy snacks that can be baked instead of fried:
We all love our Pakoras. These taste just as delicious when baked. Put them straight into a pre-heated oven (250C or 480F) and bake for about 25 minutes for that crunchy yet tender perfection.
Baked Ragi Chakli
Chakli, also known as murukku, is a favourite snack amongst all ages. Make it with healthy ragi flour and bake to perfection instead of an oily fry. This healthy snack would be perfect to pair with a hot cup of chai.
Baked Aloo Tikki
Whether you shallow fry it or deep fry it, Aloo Tikki is done better when baked in the oven. Make a roll, a chaat or a sandwich with this healthy alternative, and it’s bound to become a favourite in your home.
The entire world loves the Indian Samosa, as do we. Make the switch with this popular favourite by choosing to bake them instead of an oily deep-fry. Put it in a preheated oven for about 15 minutes, until the samosas are golden brown.
Baked Chana Dal Vada
Nothing beats a Dal Vada, especially if it’s made even healthier through baking. A good 20-minute bake in a pre-heated oven (200C) does the trick. Use the Tata Sampann’s unpolished Chana Dal to ensure that your ingredients have the most amount of natural protein and nutrition.
The options to bake everything that you once fried, are endless. Baking comes without any compromise to your favourite snacks and it’s a simple switch that has big benefits to your health. So, the next time you’re craving your favourite Indian snack, bake it to make it.
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