In view of the present cereal shortage in the country, certain experiments on diet were tried in Maganwadi. The following results which have been tested at Maganwadi will be helpful to save cereal consumption to some extent.
Rationing authorities in certain places are distributing atta
instead of cereals and as the cereals employed are of lower quality
there is a suggestion of adding calcium salt to the atta to make
it more nutritious. We would suggest an addition to the atta of
15 per cent of cleaned groundnut cake.
This will have many advantages:
1) There will be an outright saving of 15 per cent in cereals.
2) The protein content of the atta will be practically doubled.
3) There will be no increase in the cost; if anything it may scale down the cost.
4) The ground-nut cake is very rich in vitamin B complex particularly in
There is no danger of the cake powder getting rancid as in the
proportion in which it will be present in the atta, the anti-oxident
property of the atta will be effective to check any hydrolysis.
Only good fresh seeds should be taken, cleaned, by hand-picking and
passed in bullock-driven ghani presses. The extraction of oil
being by cold process no nutritious ingredients of the ground-nut are
lost. The oil is pressed out leaving only about 10 to 11 per cent in the
cake. The cakes are broken into small pieces and dried in the sun. The
cake so treated will remain quite fresh for at least one week and retain
its flavour. They get bone hard and can be cracked to a fine meal in a
pestle and mortar. This meal can be fed in the hand chakki to
pulverize and bring it to atta consistency.
The 15 per cent of its addition will mean in the normal diet a daily
consumption of less than 1˝ chhataks. There is no difficulty in
making the preparations of the atta. It retains all the good
points of the whole cereal atta plus a special nutty flavour
which makes food all the more tasty. This flavour may be very negligible
when only 15 per cent of ground-nut-oilcake atta is added and
only on a larger addition can the taste be fully appreciated.
The cake contains over 50 per cent of high grade protein.
Scientific experiments elsewhere have also established high grade
digestibility coefficient of ground-nut protein. It ranks with the
microbial protein of yeast and closely approximates animal protein as
found in milk, eggs and mutton.
After many experiments we have come to the conclusion that 1 to 2
chhataks of ground-nut oil-cake can be easily digested and taken
along with cereals making the preparation more palatable. The cake bits
are soaked in water and in two hours or so they disintegrate forming a
uniform paste. This paste can be mixed with atta and made into
chapatis. The proportion of 1:5 is quite good. The paste adds to the
flavour of the dal or vegetable, if cooked along with these. It
is very tasty when used in the preparation of dalia or porridge
with cereals half and half or even without that.
Such use of ground-nut cake will release some of the cereal needed and
will be a very good health-giving food.