Find comfort in food choices

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Not only are we continually seeking comfort in our food choices, but we are also becoming more conscious about overeating and actively opt for guilt-free snacks…writes Chef Kunal Kapur

Snacks and junk food are the unavoidable bad habits in the present times. Youngsters have a close relationship with these kinds of food that destructs our inner and outer body slowly. Lately, many of us have been bogged down and caught up with work and home responsibilities; when it comes to leisure time, our options are limited. Yet on any normal day, we look forward to our favourite cup of chai or coffee and a snack that instantly uplifts our moods. During the evening hours, we allow ourselves to indulge our cravings for flavourful and mouth-watering foods; but we also seek easy-to-prepare solutions to satisfy hunger pangs.

While we each may have our preferences, when choosing a snack, taste plays a vital role. We only wait for our short evening snack breaks, because that’s when we can treat ourselves to something yummy. Snacking is known to enhance our good feelings and cheer us up, even on dull and dragging days. While we can’t meet up with friends and colleagues to chat up over samosas and chaat, we can exploit the digital medium to share in these little joys over video calls and group sessions. In fact, ready-to-eat foods that are easily available can provide safe and exciting solutions to the dilemmas of ‘new normal’ lifestyles.

Capturing the growing inclination towards snacking, Euromonitor reports reveal that most of us are constantly seeking time-saving solutions and higher convenience across various aspects of life, including our food habits. In most households, food is prepared by the homemaker and by late afternoon, fatigue sets in; she prefers simplified alternatives to a traditional snack menu. These days, even those accustomed to a cook are managing without any additional help, and the need for easy-to-make snacks have been on the rise.

Not only are we continually seeking comfort in our food choices, but we are also becoming more conscious about overeating and actively opt for guilt-free snacks. When it comes to mindful eating, wholegrain oats are becoming increasingly popular for their high nutrition, protein and fibre content. Oats are satiating in small portions and these days, they come in various forms and flavours, such as Saffola Masala Oats that are infused with traditional spices to suit the Indian palette and desire for piping hot snacks.

Euromonitor reports also indicate that instances of snacking are the highest between 4 p.m. to 6 p.m; when we break from work or catch up with our social media feeds, music playlist and OTT shows that we are binge watching. We enjoy eating light, but also need to tease our taste buds and feel content; oats allows us to customize our bowls to suit our fancy. With regional twists like Masala & Coriander or Curry & Pepper,

Saffola Masala Oats can be whipped up to your liking using real vegetables, sauces, dry fruits and crispies.

In fact, it can also be shared virtually with colleagues — plan productive brainstorming sessions or team-building activities on Zoom or Google Meet. Most companies have been adopting innovative ideas to keep employees motivated when working from home. Snacking can supercharge creativity and calm the jitters; so why not schedule it on the work calendar. Saffola Masala Oats is available at local stores and online on platforms like Amazon.in and BigBasket; so your colleagues can easily select their favourites.

It can also be made more exciting with fresh ingredients like lemon and mint leaves or crunchy toppings like carrot sticks, capsicum slices and croutons. If you prefer going solo and have been spending your evenings reading or watching the sunset, make the most of your time at home with a lip-smacking bowl of joy. Feel good with tangy oats on toast, bite on lavash and coriander oats, sip a soupy bowl of vegetable oats and just go wild with your imagination when customizing your evening snacks!

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