Healthy Ramadan

Stay Lean During Ramadan 2017

Ramadan is right around the corner! It’s a wonderful time for mental resolve and spiritual benefit. However, many fear that consuming food at such late hours will result in weight gain!

This doesn’t have to be the case! If you follow Mr Mango’s simple rules for staying lean during Ramadan then you’ll have absolutely nothing to worry about. See them below…

Rule 1 – Don’t Overindulge at Iftar

healthy ramadan

Iftar is the meal eaten after sunset during Ramadan. It’s understandable why many tend to overindulge when the sun goes down, especially during the first week of the holy month when the body is adapting to fasting.

However, overeating will undoubtedly lead to weight gain if you do it throughout the month. If you’re eating more calories than your body needs throughout Ramadan, the result could mean you see a few extra pounds on the scale when you weigh yourself on June 24th (the last day of Ramadan).

 Rule 2 – Eat Right

Healthy Ramadan 3

It’s not just how much you eat but what you feed your body as well. Eating nutrient dense foods is essential as they will keep you fuller for longer.

Carby foods will be digested and used up relatively quickly compared to foods high in protein or healthy fats. Make sure when you eat, your plate of food is a nice balance of protein, carbs, fats and vegetables of course!

Also! A Mr Mango top tip would be preparing your meals in advance so you’re not tempted to binge on any unhealthy food!

Rule 3 – Sleep

Sleep deprivation is common during the month of Ramadan but it is key that you get as much sleep as you can in, not only for muscular recovery if you’re working out but for many other factors.

Sleep deprivation causes havoc with your body at a cellular and hormonal level. When you’re sleep deprived, the mitochondria in your cells that digest fuel start to shut down and your body boosts the levels of the hormone ghrelin which tells you that you’re hungry i.e. you’ll eat more calories and not be able to digest it properly leading to weight gain.

Rule 4 – Drink plenty of water

Healthy Ramadan 5

Drink as much water as you can between Ifthar and Suhoor (pre-dawn meal) to reduce the risk of dehydration during fasting.

It’s also key to maintaining your metabolism levels so you will be less likely to store the calories you consume as fat.

Tip – Drinking coconut water in moderation is great to increase the electrolytes in your body, which are essential for heart, nerve and muscle functions.

Rule 5 – Train Smart

Healthy Ramadan 6

The best time to hit the gym would be 2 hours before you break your fast; this way the food you eat when you break your fast will aid in muscular recovery. It also maximises the time you’ll be able to eat as you won’t be spending Ifthar time training.

Also, seeing as water cannot be drunk before sundown, HIIT or intense cardio workouts will be very difficult. So, stick to the weights and light cardio activities like walking for the month.

That’s Mr Mango’s 5 rules to stay lean during Ramadan. Do you have any other tips you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments below.

Also, if you’d like some nutritious HMC Halal protein sources for your Ifthar meals, be sure to check out Mr Mango’s online aisles for a great selection of Chicken, Lamb, Mutton, Marinated Meat and Spices right here… https://www.mrmangodelivery.co.uk/

Healthiest Ways to Cook Meat Feature

The Top 3 Healthiest Ways to Cook Meat

We at Mr Mango delivery thought you, our wonderful customers, would be interested in the healthiest ways to cook your HMC approved Halal meat.

There are countless methods to cooking meat but not all are what you’d call “healthy.”

So, here are the top 3 techniques to cook your meat in the most guilt-free and health conscious ways known to mankind!

Grilling

Healthiest Ways to Cook Meat Grilling

Now I know what you’re thinking. You think grill and an image an unhealthy barbecue comes to mind but, if George Foreman has taught us anything, grilling can be a very healthy cooking option.

Grilling is extremely popular as it requires few additional fats (like oil) whilst retaining the meat’s nutrients. It also adds a smoky flavour which many find appealing.

However, there are some things you should avoid when cooking your meat on the grill including chargrilling. Regularly consuming chargrilled meat has been linked to pancreatic and breast cancer.

Furthermore, when meat is grilled at high temperatures, the animal fat which melts onto the cooking surface creates a toxic chemical called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs); these are known carcinogens i.e. cancer causing agents.

I know this sounds concerning but if you remove the meat drippings once cooked, PAH formation can be reduced by a whopping 89%!

Overall, if you don’t overly cook your meat and get rid of the drippings when cooked, you will be consuming leaner meat full of nutrients!

Poaching

Healthiest Ways to Cook Meat Poached

Poaching is not just for eggs! It’s a great way to cook delicate foods such as chicken because liquid, not fat, carries the heat into the meat whilst cooking.

Although poaching may take a little longer to cook meat than grilling due to the lower cooking temperature, research has shown that a little more patience at the stove may not be such a bad thing.

Cooking with moist heat at low temperatures can minimise the production of advanced glycation products (AGEs) which have been associated with diseases including heart and kidney disease.

The trade off with poaching is that some of the meat’s nutrients may be lost; in particular Vitamin B.

Poaching is relatively shorter than the similar methods of steaming or simmering so in terms of moist heat methods, it’s your best bet!

Pressure Cooking

Healthiest Ways to Cook Meat Pressure Cooker

Pressure cooking is very quick and healthy way to cook meat!

A big advantage off pressure cooking is that due to its quickness, the meat’s vitamins and minerals are kept intact.

Also, the cooker seals the meat in steam created by the boiling water meaning flavours are intensified and no extra oil or fat is needed.

The only disadvantage is that this method may result in some meats becoming overly soft but after some trial and error with various meats, this shouldn’t be a long-term issue.

And that is our top 3 ways to cook meat in the healthiest way possible! Which way do you prefer to cook your meat? Be sure to let us know in the comments below!

Top 10 Tips to Make Indian Food Healthy

Indian food has fast become a staple in the UK, but can been seen only as a takeaway to some. These takeaways can be greasy, un-apologetically stodgy and downright unpleasant! Once you’ve tasted a proper curry though, you can never go back!

However, some parts of traditional Indian cooking can be very unhealthy. Some food require frying, and there’s lots of cream and ghee used. We’ve created our list of the top 10 ways to make your Indian food healthy!

Variety of vegetables and legumes

Curries normally contain a variety of vegetables and legumes to help create a variety of flavours. Try mixing up the ratio of meat to vegetables, or have a solely vegetarian dish! Vegetables and legumes are a great source of antioxidants and fibre.

Bulk dishes with legumes

Legumes include sprouted beans and lentils. Using these to bulk out your dishes isn’t only healthier, but less meat will be needed!

Use minimal red meat

Red meat is high in saturated fats, so when you’re cooking, try to avoid using Lamb, Beef or Pork. Opt for more protein filled meats like Chicken or Turkey, especially if it’s lean.

Use oil sparingly

You don’t need to use Ghee in every recipe! There’s nothing wrong with using standard vegetable oil because you’ll still get the same taste, but your food will be less oily and greasy. If you do choose to use oil though, you don’t need it to be of the same quantity as you would with Ghee. Use the oil sparingly.

Meals that don’t require frying

There are plenty of recipes that don’t require frying. A simple Google search will provide you with recipes for non-frying based dishes, like Broccoli Curry or no fry Pakoras.

Coconut milk/cream replacement

Coconut milk and cream add unnecessary fats into your meals, so look for replacements like skimmed milk, cashew nut paste or poppy seed paste. You’ll get the same great taste, but keep your meal as healthy as possible.

Tandoori grilling

A fantastic way of cooking your meats without frying them in excess oil. Tandoori grilling allows for all the excess fat from the meat to escape before you eat, giving yourself more lean meat!

Wholemeal flour instead of plain flour

When you’re making Chapattis or Parathas, try switching your plain flour to wholemeal flour. This slight change may make your food a little darker, but wholemeal flour is a slower releasing carbohydrate and so it’s better for you!

Brown basmati rice instead of white rice

For the same reasons as the wholemeal flour, swapping your white Basmati rice for the wholemeal alternative means you’ll be eating slow release carbohydrates, as well as them being nutrient dense, meaning there’s more vitamins and minerals in every bite!

Bake Samosas instead of frying them

Arguably still a big debate, but highly recommended for a healthier diet. Baking your Samosas instead of frying them makes them less greasy and fatty. Whether you’re having a vegetable or meat-based Samosa, you’ll be grateful for baking them!


Have we missed anything? Let us know your tips for healthier Indian food in the comments below!

Food Events in Birmingham in 2017!

Throughout the year, it’s always nice to try something new! Experience new cultures and try new and exciting food! It’s a shame that there isn’t a food festival every week – but there is one almost every month!

We’ve compiled a list of the highlights of the food festival calendar, from March to December! Unfortunately not every month can be filled with foody goodness, but there are some months with double servings! Enjoy!

March

4th March – Solihull’s Fairtrade Cake-Off

Lots of different categories from cupcakes to show stoppers, all of which must contain at two Fairtrade ingredients! Judges include Amari Koryang, winner of CBBC Bake Off 2015

25th March – Holi-Rave

The return of the Holi Rave means it’s getting time to mark the arrival of Spring! You can always count on finding some amazing street food from all over the Midlands here!

June

15th-18th June – BBC Good Food Show

Michelin-star chef Glynn Purnell will be appearing at the NEC for the BBC Good Food Show 2017. As the face of Saturday Kitchen, you’ll definitely experience some delightful food!

30th June-1st July – Colmore Food Festival

Glynn Purnell is back again is helping to officially launch the Colmore Food Festival. This annual celebration attracts 30,000 visitors to help celebrate food in the heart of Colmore Business District, filled with bars and cafes.

August

26th-28th August – Lichfield Food Festival

Your Bank Holiday weekend just got very busy! You can expect a massive selection of food and drink stalls, free cookery demonstrations, street food, pop-up coffee and so much more in Lichfield City Centre!

September

Date TBC – Birmingham Chilli Festival

Visit at your peril! Be prepared to taste some of the hottest sauces, foods and chocolates you could find! See if you can spot Chilli Queen Lou Witterick challenging new contenders for the Chilli eating competition.

November

3rd-5th November – Cake International

Ideal for cake lovers – eaters or makers! You can find some of the most amazingly detailed cakes in the NEC! Want to know what your favourite celebrity looks like in cake form – you’re bound to find out!

December

Date TBC – Birmingham German Market

It’s back once again! Enjoy exquisite German food and culture in this month long festive treat! The date is yet to be confirmed, but hopefully it will continue all the way up to Christmas Day again!

 


Are you attending of these food festivals, or know of anymore? Let us know in the comments!

Gulab_Jamun

The Sweet History of the Gulab Jamun

We’re Jamun, We’re Jamun. I hope you like Jamun too!

One of the sweetest dishes South Asian cuisine has to offer is undoubtedly the Gulab Jamun! Made from the perfect concoction of floury, milky, sugary, syrupy and nutty ingredients, the Gulab Jaun packs a powerful punch that rounds off any meal perfectly.

These rose scented syrupy spheres of joy are particularly popular in India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh and now, it would be difficult to find an South Asian restaurant in the UK which doesn’t have this desert on their menu.

Read on to learn the history of the Gulab Jamun and how to make the perfect batch yourself!

The Gulab Jamun Origin Story

“Gulab” is derived from the Persian word gol (flower) and ab (water) whilst “Jamun” is the Hindi/Urdu word for Syzygium cumini, a fruit also known as the Java plum which is a similar size and shape to the Gulab Jamun.

Believe it or not, the first Gulab Jamuns were prepared in medieval India and is the descendant of a fritter. According to the culinary historian Michael Krondl, the dish may have derived from a Persian dish which was improperly prepared by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan’s personal chef.

The Perfect Gulab Jamun Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 130g dried milk powder
  • 3 tablespoons plain flour
  • 2 tablespoons ghee (clarified butter), melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 125ml warm milk
  • 1 pinch ground cardamom
  • 1 litre vegetable oil for deep frying
  • 250g caster sugar
  • 200ml water
  • 1 teaspoon rose water
  • 1 pinch ground cardamom
  • 1 tablespoon chopped almonds (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped pistachio nuts (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon sultanas (optional)

Steps:

  • First of all, get yourself a large bowl and mix together the flour, baking powder, dried milk power and cardamom
  • Stir in the chopped almonds, chopped pistachio nuts and sultanas (all of which are optional)
  • Add the ghee and mix well with the warm milk
  • When well blended, cover the dough and let the mix rest for 20 mins
  • For the syrup, in a large frying pan, mix and stir the sugar, water, rose water and a pinch of cardamom. Simmer for 1 minute then set this mix aside as well
  • Get a large frying pan and fill it hallway up with oil and heat for 5 minutes over a medium flame
  • Knead the dough and create 20 small balls
  • Then, on a low heat, fry the balls (10 at a time)
  • After a few minutes the Jamun will expand twice their size and begin to float. At this point, increase the heat to medium and turn them frequently until they turn golden brown.
  • Remove the Jamun from the oil, allow them to cool slightly and then drain them using a kitchen towel.
  • Place all of the Jamun onto a pan with the syrup and simmer over a medium heat for 5 minutes.
  • Squeeze them sporadically so the Jamun can soak up as much of the syrup as possible.
  • Serve immediately or allow to cool then chill.

Best Bollywood Films about Food!

What’s the one thing that’s bigger than Bollywood?…Food!

But what happens when you combine the two? You’ll get an explosion of culture and exquisite taste enough to warm the soul!

Combining the best in Bollywood acting, and sublime cooking skills can only spell out for a great film!

But what are the best Bollywood films about food? Find out below!


The Lunchbox

“Sometimes the wrong train can get you to the right station”

A charming film starring Irrfan Khan and Nimrat Kaur, we see a young woman cooking for someone she’s never known, and awaiting the notes he sends back to her!

Both characters are suffering from personal issues, and through food they’re helping each other cope and build!

 

Luv Shuv Tey Chicken Khurana

A man on the run from a dangerous UK gangster, lead character Omi Khurana, played by Kunal Kapoor, tries to help uncover the secret family recipe of Chicken Khurana in order to help restore family order!

With lots of family issues uncovered, you can always count on the hunt of a secret recipe to help bring everyone back together!

 

Cheeni Kum

Described as a “sugar-free” romance, it’s a story of chef Buddhadev Gupta, played by Amitabh Bachchan, and his restaurant Spice 6. He then meets a much younger Nina Verma, played by Tabu, and falls in love.

Their romance and passion certainly helps highlight the skill are art in Amitabh’s cooking!

 

Paranthe Wali Gali

Take a romantic middle class love story set in the backdrop of the oldest lane of Delhi thronged with delicious paranthas, and voila–a perfect treat!

Starring Mohinder Gujral as Rimjhim Kaur, and Yuvraj Haral as Vivian, it really is a great film to watch for couples.

 

Daawat-e-Ishq

Bring a handsome Lucknawi cook with a heart of gold and a chirpy Hyderabadi girl with a weakness for kebabs and you have a gastronomical love story!

Starring Aditya Roy Kapoor as Tariq and Parineeti Chopra as Gulrez, it feels like a classic!

 


What’s your favourite Bollywood film about food? Let us know in the comments below!

 

 

 

 

samosa 1

The Delicious History of the Samosa

Ah, the Samosa. Its savoury offerings have tantalised the taste buds of the world’s population for hundreds of years and the triangular South Asian delicacy has become a staple in British Culture.

Who would’ve thought such an elegantly simple dish would have reached these untold levels of popularity? How did this immense following of the Samosa occur?

Read on to find out the history of the samosa and how to create the perfect tetrahedral snacks yourself!

The Samosa’s Origin Story

The beginnings of the samosa can be traced back prior to the 10th century! It was in Middle Eastern cuisine where its origins can be found under the name Sanbosag in Persian texts.

India and Pakistan had no knowledge of the Samosa until the 13th or 14th century when migrant workers travelled from the Middle-East to the South Asian countries to find employ in the kitchens of Muslim nobility.

In the following centuries, the many variants of the Samosa were created due to the diverse eating cultures in different regions e.g. the vegetarianism found in Hindu culture brought the Vegetable Samosa into fruition.

The Samosa can now be found in a plethora of countries including:

India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan, Maldives, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Xinjiang, Burma, Indonesia, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia, Israel, Portugal, Brazil, The United Kingdom, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, South Africa, Kenya and Tanzania.

It is remarkable how far and wide the samosa has travelled and it is because of this reach that we now have so many Samosa varieties to choose from. In 2017, we now have the real first world problem of deciding on which Samosa to devour.

Chole Samosas, Chow Mein Samosas, Pasta Samosas, Keema Samosas, Cheese Samosas, Chocolate Samosas, Fried Rice Samosas, Matar Soya Samosas, Egg Samosas, Paneers Samosas, Jam Samosas and Fish Samosas are just some of the concoctions the world has come up with.

But what is the perfect Samosa?

The Perfect Samosa Recipe

samosa 2

In this writer’s humble opinion, a Samosa is at its finest when it’s kept to its purest form…the vegetable samosa! Also, the perfect samosas have to be baked!

As time has passed and the health conscious among us have increased, Samosas have been forced to adapt to survive and they have done so splendidly.

The advent of the baked Samosa was a gamechanger; no longer are the triangular treats a greasy and oily encounter but a healthier non-dripping enriching one.

It is the simplicity of the Vegetable Samosas that make them so effectively scrumptious, providing all of the correct textures and ingredients for a melt in the mouth experience every time.

Ingredients:

  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • ½ tsp mustard seeds
  • 60g chopped onion
  • 1 tsp finely chopped ginger
  • 60g frozen peas
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp red chilli powder
  • ½-¾ tsp garam masala
  • 1-2 tsp dried mango powder
  • salt (to taste)
  • splash water
  • 600g potatoes
  • 4 tbsp chopped fresh coriander leaves
  • packet ready-made filo pastry
  • 5 tbsp melted butter

 

Steps:

  • Heat the oil in a small non-stick pan and fry the mustard seeds for about ten seconds
  • Add the onion and ginger and cook for 2-3 minutes over a high heat.
  • Add the peas, spices, mango powder, salt, a splash of water and stir well.
  • Cook for 1-2 minutes, then add the potatoes and coriander and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.
  • Taste your creation and adjust the seasoning if required.
  • Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.
  • Lay the pastry sheet flat on a clean surface and brush with melted butter.
  • Fold in one third of the pastry lengthways towards the middle.
  • Brush again with the butter and fold in the other side to make a long triple-layered strip.
  • Place one teaspoon of the filling mixture at one end of the strip, leaving a approx 2cm/1in border.
  • Take the right corner and fold diagonally to the left which should form a complete triangle.
  • Fold again along the upper crease of the triangle until you reach the end of the strip.
  • Brush the outer surface with more butter.
  • Place onto a baking sheet and cover while you make the rest of the samosas.
  • Bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes, or until golden and crisp, turning halfway through the cooking time.
  • Serve with Chutney
  • Enjoy!
Santa food

How many calories does Santa eat on Christmas Eve?

On Christmas Eve, Santa Claus will be delivering presents to 1.6 billion children! If those children are evenly distributed across the world that means Santa will be travelling a distance of 510,000,000 km!

Santa is going to work up quite the appetite after climbing up and down all of those chimneys so it’s a good thing children always leave him some snacks to help keep him going.

These snacks normally take the form of cookies and milk. The cookies provide an instant sugar boost whilst the milk will provide Saint Nick with slower releasing form of energy. The perfect quick combo snack for a man in a hurry.

Just how many calories do all of those cookies and glasses of milk amount to? The answer may frighten you!

Let’s assume that every glass of milk is 200ml and that every house leaves 2 medium sized cookies for Santa.

The milk would be 87 calories, meanwhile the double serving of cookies would be 156 calories. In total, Santa would be consuming 243 calories at every house he visits.

So how many houses does he visit? Well, With an average of 2.5 children per household Santa will need to make 640 million stops.

640,000,000 x 243 = 155,520,000,000 billion calories!!!

After Christmas Day, Mrs Claus must surely get Santa on a low carb, low sugar, raw food, paleo, caveman diet to balance all the milky, chocalatey, biscuity goodness!

How to make the perfect Jalebi

There’s just something about Jalebi isn’t there? Their sweet aroma, their crispy crystalized orange outer layer and the sugar syrup that is waiting to be devoured after that first bite. It is no surprise that the dessert has been a staple for South Asian families, particularly when entertaining guests. Over the holiday season, entertaining family and friends will become a more frequent activity and all will be expecting the crunchy chewy texture of Jalebis to be waiting for them moments after walking through your door. Here is how to make the perfect Jalebi so you don’t disappoint those armed with a seasonal sweet tooth….

 

Ingredients:

Batter:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp corn starch
  • Pinch of citric acid
  • 1 teaspoon of oil
  • 1 teaspoon of Yeast
  • 1-1/2 cup water

Syrup:

  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 4 crushed cardamom
  • A few strands of saffron
  • Few drops lemon juice
  • Frying oil

 

Steps:

Batter:

  • Mix the all-purpose flour and corn starch
  • Add the yeast and citric acid and mix well
  • Add the water slowly to make batter; this should be the same consistency as pancake batter
  • Place the batter aside in a warm place for half an hour

Syrup:

  • Boil the sugar and water together
  • Add the lemon juice, cardamom and saffron
  • Boil for 2-3 mins until the syrup starts to stick to your finger
  • Turn off heat

Remaining Steps:

  • Heat oil in a frying pan that is one inch deep
  • To test, place a drop of batter in the oil and, if the batter sizzles and rises into a ball, then the oil is ready
  • Place the Jalebi batter into a piping bag
  • Squeeze the batter into the hot oil in the oh so familiar concentric Jalebi shape
  • Fry the batter until light golden brown on both sides
  • Remove the Jalebi from the pan, wait for a minute, then transfer them into the warm syrup
  • Soak for about thirty seconds and then take them out
  • Repeat the process and a batch of Jalebis will be ready to serve

Mr Mango’s Kitchen – Indian Mutton Curry

Ah mutton, the most tender of Indian delicacies. When curried, goat meat really is a sensational dish bursting with a unique immense flavour. Mutton contains low levels of saturated fat and cholesterol, is high in iron and rich in protein. If red meat is your guilty pleasure, then opt for mutton as it is the healthier and leaner option. Try out the delicious Indian Mutton Curry recipe below!

Ingredients:

  • 1 kg of goat meat, cut into suitable bite-sized chunks
  • 4 tbsps vegetable/ canola/ sunflower cooking oil
  • 2 large onions sliced thin
  • 2 large diced tomatoes
  • Chopped coriander
  • 2 tbsps garlic paste
  • 1 tbsp ginger paste
  • 2 tsps coriander powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 2 tsps garam masala powder
  • Salt

Steps:

  • Heat the cooking oil in a heavy deep pan, on medium heat.
  • When hot, add the onions and sauté until golden brown.
  • Remove the onions from the oil and drain on paper towels. Turn off heat.
  • Grind the onions into a smooth paste (adding very little to no water) in a blender. Once done, remove into a separate container.
  • Now grind the tomatoes, garlic and ginger pastes together in the blender. Remove into a separate container and keep aside for later use.
  • Heat the oil left over from frying the onions again and add the onion paste. Sauté for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the tomato paste and all the powered spices, including the garam masala. Mix well.
  • Sauté the resulting masala (onion-tomato-spice mixture) until the oil begins to separate from it. This can take up to 10 minutes.
  • Add the goat/mutton pieces to the masala and season with salt to taste. Stir to fully coat the goat/ mutton pieces with the masala.
  • Sauté until the goat/mutton is browned well.
  • Add 1/2 a cup of hot water to the pan and stir thoroughly.
  • Cook until the goat/ mutton is tender. You will need to keep checking on the goat/ mutton as it cooks and adding more water if all the water dries up. Stir often to prevent burning. The dish should have a fairly thick gravy when done.
  • When the meat is cooked, garnish with chopped coriander and serve with hot Chapatis, Naans or rice.
  • Enjoy!