Ever since man evolved from a hunter to a food-gatherer and producer, he has been looking for means and implements to process food.
Our ancestors may have been far more sophisticated eaters than we perhaps give them credit for.
Processing food grains, nuts, wild fruits required implements. With Stone Age came the answer, in the form of kitchen tools.
Let’s talk about them and evoke some #पुरानीयादें (old memories)
The Hamam Dasta or Khal dasta has been used in many an ancient civilisation, not just for processing food but for medicinal preparations too. Remember depictions of Vaids or Ayurvedic doctors using a mortar-pestle to pulverize herbs and mixes?
As civilisations progressed, the Hamam dasta evolved too, it began to be available in wood and bronze, latter being more popular.
With development, came convenience and modern technology slowly replaced the old kitchen tools with appliances.
But for centuries, traditional cooks worldwide have used the good old mortars and pestles to prepare their signature dishes. Because for them, it is not just about cutting and shredding ingredients (that food processors do), but pounding and pulverizing them which brings out the actual flavours.
Additionally, this method has the added advantage of crushing the food with low energy, just enough to bring out its essence without warming it up.
Now that convenience is available at the flick of a switch, it’s interesting to note that these ancient tools actually doubled up as body fitness equipments too!
Pounding with the heavy pestle is a good arm exercise while concentrating on the movement and the food being crushed improved focus. How’s that for a quick fit idea!
Do you still use the Hamam Dasta/Ural/Khal Dasta?