Kanji, also known as congee, is not just a comfort food but also helps nourish the gut. It is a go-to homemade treatment preferred by a majority of Indian households for treating colds and flu for centuries. Even Bollywood actresses Anushka Sharma and Aditi Rao Hydari, time and again, opt to relish this nutritious dish to replenish their energy. Recently, the duo took to Instagram to share a glimpse of this holistic Kerala vegetarian cuisine that was sent to them by Marina Balakrishnan, also known as That Thalassery Girl.
Have a look at what Anushka Sharma posted on her Instagram story earlier this month:
Here is a look at what Aditi Rao shared on her wall:
During an interaction with the Indian Express, dietician Garima Goyal highlighted why Kanji is beneficial for health.
Good for digestion
According to the dietician, Kanji should be consumed by the sick as it not only heals stomach-related problems but also nourishes the gut. It is also easier to digest as it is cooked with a higher quantity of water and has a mushy consistency.
Good for hydration
While explaining the quantity of water in the dish, the expert said it usually has a 10:1 water-to-rice grain ratio. It can also be 7:1 if one wishes the consistency to be thick. For infants, the dish can also be made using 13 parts of water. “Kanji is basically 80-90 percent water. Long-duration cooking makes the rice grains absorb a lot of water. So having it on sick days is very refreshing and hydrating,” she said.
Apart from water, congee can also be made using chicken stock or bone breath, which doesn’t only make it easily digestible but also rich in proteins, vitamins, and minerals.
Since the water quantity is more, carbohydrate is low in the dish. In addition to this, Kanji is also filling and reduces hunger pangs.
Treatment of cold and flu
Adding ginger and chopped scallions to the dish makes it a good homemade treatment for symptoms of cold and flu, as per the expert.
How to make Kanji?
The first step is to rinse the excess starch from the rice by washing it thoroughly with water. This also leads to the removal of any kind of impurity or dirt in the rice grains. Choose the water ratio depending on the choice of your consistency. Bring the mixture to a boil. Keep stirring it every now and then to prevent the rice from burning at the bottom. Once you find the consistency fine, season it with salt. (Note: proteins including chicken, fish, and ground pork can be added to the item.)
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