Benefits of Using Clay Pots in CookingAccording to Ayurveda Specialist at Dr. Vaidya's, Dr. Surya Bhagwati, "cooking in a clay pot not only has a variety of health benefits but also makes for an easier cooking process and in the end, a more flavorful and nutritious dish. Due to its numerous health benefits, Ayurveda suggests cooking in a clay pot. Cooking in a clay pot is much better than cooking in a normal utensil, not just for its various health benefits, but also makes it much simpler to cook and improves the quality of the food at the end. The porosity and natural insulation properties of clay causes heat and moisture to circulate throughout clay pots. This makes cooking in a clay pot a much slower process but has added benefit of preventing amateur cooks from burning their dishes. More importantly, this causes the moisture and nutrient loss while cooking in clay pots to be much lower compared to cooking in metal or enamel lined utensils."
1. Porous in Nature
Clay pot's porous nature allows both moisture and heat to circulate through the food, which results in slow yet aromatic food. It also retains the nutrition of the food, which is generally lost in other types of utensils. The thermal inertia in clay pots helps meats stay tender and soft as the muscle proteins denature and collagen breaks down completely.
2. Alkaline Nature
Clay is alkaline in nature and it interacts with the acidity in the food, thereby neutralising the pH balance and eventually making food healthier and a lot tastier. It is believed to provide the required minerals including calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus and sulphur that benefits our health.
3. Lesser Usage of Oil
4. Ensures Flavourful Food
Due to slow cooking and porous nature of clay pots, the moisture and aroma tends to stay in the pot without losing any nutrient, hence making it flavoursome. It also has an earthy flavour added to it, which we bet you may not get in any other utensil.
5. Inexpensive and Easily Available
No matter how modern times may be, we are sure there are shops that still sell pure and unglazed clay pots. Clay pots are not very expensive, at least not more than any other types of utensil. You can get them in different shapes and sizes without really making a hole in your pocket.
Health Benefits of Using a Clay Pot
As per Ayurveda expert Dr. Sandeep Madan from Aastha Ayurvedic Clinic, "In modern times, I wouldn't suggest anyone to use clay pots majorly because they are glazed with substances that contain lead, mercury and many others that can be hazardous for health. If you manage to get an unglazed and pure earthen pot, you can start cooking in them after soaking them in water for some time.
It is difficult to get products in their purest form, but it isn't impossible. If you really want to start cooking in clay pots, make sure you do not buy any glazed or polished one, rather try and find unglazed ones. If you get your hands on them, you wouldn't want to miss the earthy flavours of food and surely never want to go back to other utensils.