Since ancient times, mud vessels are used for cooking and are one of the healthiest ways to cook. Here’s why you can use them and how to take care of them.
Mud or the earth is one of the five elements that make up our bodies. The remaining four are water, air, space, and fire. Clay vessels are filled with all the goodness of the Prithvi tattva. Using mud vessels for cooking isn’t just helpful for your health, they have a number of other benefits too!
It is considered to be the most ancient and healthiest way to cook apart from iron and alloy ware. Now, without beating around the bush, let me highlight a few essentials of preparing the mud vessels for cooking, the benefits, and maintenance.
Step one- The initial wash
Before using the mud vessels for cooking anything, you need to prep it for about a week to be able to use it. Freshly baked mud ware must be washed thoroughly with water and a steel scrubber. Wash it till you see no mud or dirt sticking to it.
Step two- First-week care
Once done with the initial scrubbing, fill the vessel with water to the brim and store it in a dry place. Remember to change this water on a daily basis for the next 5-7 days. This helps reduce the moisture-absorbing capacity of the vessel.
Step three- Using it for the first-time
After a week, boil some water in it, while keeping the burner on low flame. Put the vessel to dry and apply some coconut oil inside out. The layer of oil improves the clay’s non-stick nature. It also protects the mud vessel from any fungal growth in future.
The vessel is now fit for daily use. Yes, the initial stage is a time consuming process but once you’re done, it helps increase vessel’s life. Always remember to store it in a dry place.
Cheap and local availability- You can purchase these from any local and neighbourhood potter. Remember to buy the unglazed ones.
Saves fuel- After the first few sessions of slow cooking, the vessel picks up its speed. It takes the same time to cooking with any other ware, but at a lower flame. Also, cooking uses less oil thus making it a healthy option to cook food in.
Natural non-stick- It is the best non-stick ware I ever used. And to add to it, it is organic and non-toxic. The mud vessel can be used to cook anything right from khichdi, any vegetable stew or curry. Chapatis parathas and roasts can be done in clay tawas or pans. The food gets cooked evenly and this helps it remain fresh for a longer time.
Environment and health Friendly- This is the need of the hour. Mud vessels improve the nutritional levels of the food. The curries prepared in it don’t just retain their nutritive value, but also absorbs it from the clay. Calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous are available readily and naturally in mud vessel.
The best part about using a mud vessel is, it doesn’t require any soap for cleaning. Also it’s not advisable to use detergent, as clay tends to absorb it. Use tap water with steel scrubber to scrape and clean it after cooking.
Remember to place it in a dry place. Personally, I prefer to boil water in it after the normal tap water wash. I have been using the clay vessels for more than a year now and can vouch for its innumerable health benefits. And to add to it, it is assisting me befriend mother nature.
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