Abbey Reiner | 2A | 3-10-14
background and culture
- located in Asia
- considered the world's 2nd largest population (1,220,800,359) consisting of mostly Hindu's and Muslims.
- very hot in the summer (90C-104F) pretty cold in the winter (59C-15F)
the extreme heat and heavy rain destroy the farmland.
India's agricultural products:
fresh fruit, spices, mustard seeds/oil, ginger, buffalo & goat milk, dry chilies & peppers, cumin, cloves, mace & papads.
Native customs and beliefs
- bound to satisfy spice-lovers.
- India widely practices vegetarianism.
- it's unthinkable to taste any dish during preparation.
- water must never be sipped from a glass but poured into ones mouth & is used for rinsing, must not be swallowed.
- because of the Hindu tradition, you are to sit on the ground facing east or north, in silence & food is systematically arranged on a disposable banana leaf. (which some sprinkle water on as a ritual act of purification before eating.)
- washing hands before and after are practiced because you use your right hand to eat.
- betel leaves and nuts are eaten after to help digest.
- special foods like rice stained with turmeric, grains of barley, and ghee (butter) are a must for ceremonial events like weddings but must never be used during death & mourning because they're all considered auspicious foods.
- Naprasan is an event for celebrating a child's first tasting of food, this is a combination of rice, milk, sugar and honey boiled.
- a uniquely Indian practice of eating is serving free meals to thousands of people in temples an religious festivals where they eat together and share food.
- Many celebrate the start of spring with Holi. In the morning, people splash each other with colored water and smear one another colored powders. Many also drink a yogurt drink. After the festival, the old clothes are burned and halwa (a sweet dish) is eaten. The day often ends with a feast and musical festivities. Halwa "cakes" are often served for breakfast on special occasions, such as birthdays.