Mock Meats on the Menu in Indian Restaurants

   |  Updated: June 02, 2015 14:37 IST

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Mock Meats on the Menu in Indian Restaurants
From jack fruit patties to soyabean chops or 'vegetarian' chicken and fish - options for those
seeking alternatives to meat are now available dime a dozen.

Commonly known as mock meats, such food preparations are preferred choices across a cross-section of people ranging from newly turned vegetarians to those forced to curtail meat intake due to dietary restrictions.

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"I feel the trend of serving mock meat is catching up, not as a substitute but rather a healthy alternative to meats as these products have almost similar nutritional value in terms of protein intake etc," says Anurag Mathur, Executive Chef, Jaypee Vasant Continental.

Simple plant-based products are used to substitute meat in popular dishes and make them fit for even the strictest vegetarians.

"For people who are turning vegetarian after years of gorging on meat, for people who don't eat meat due to ethical reasons but don't want to miss out on the experience and even for those who don't want to stand out in a crowd of non-vegetarians, mock meats are a godsend," says Mathur.

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Products popularly used as mock meats include wheat gluten, tempeh, tofu etc besides packaged substitutes of fried prawns etc. "Tofu is used in abundance in our Chinese specialty restaurant Ano Tai in main course items and one of our highest selling vegetarian burger in our coffee shop Eggspectation uses a vegetarian patty made out of tofu," says Mathur.
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Vegetarian prawns, lobsters and crabs are spotted on the menu of 'Chi Ni' the new mini restaurant at Dusit Devarana. "We are using special mock meat or soya meat sourced from Malaysia. The menu has almost 70 per cent vegetarian dishes. So you get to have veg fish, veg prawns, veg chicken. It's a 'fish' but purely vegetarian," says Nishant Choubey the restaurant's chef.

Participating in a recent cooking demo organised at the Le Creuset art kitchen, the chef dished out self designed recipes like 'crispy muri asupara maki roll with black kuru' and 'paneer stuffed with orange jam' recipies he describes as 'new world cuisine.'

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Quinoa, a Peruvian ingredient, is getting very popular among the health conscious population, says Choubey who claims to have cooked for celebrities such as Salman Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Akshay Kumar and Hritik Roshan. Coconut, eggplant or mushrooms are other popular substitutes that can be replaced for meat.

(Best Quinoa Recipes - Why is it a Super Grain?)

CommentsTo cater to the market for mock meat companies like Godrej Nature's Basket are stocking up an extensive range of Mock Meat.

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