5

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6 Months in India! vegetarian chef job at yoga retreat~ what to eat?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 22, 2011 at 9:10 PM

I've got an amazing opportunity to live and work in India while practicing Ashtanga yoga, but my job is cooking vegan and vegetarian food for the guests at a very nice yoga retreat. I've done this job before and I know what it available to me, and not much of it qualifies as paleo! I don't intend to be a vegetarian myself while there and plan to eat fish at least a couple times a week, as that is good and local. I've never eaten other meat in India and don't really want to!

I can get:

~coconut, coconut milk, oil, etc. but there are no jars of Artisana- more like hammering away it and attempting to wrestle out some coconut meat. The milk is in boxes or cans and I wouldn't be surprised if it's full of weird ingredients.

~eggs - I love to blend up raw eggs with coconut milk but not sure about safety in India.

~raw milk from the neighbors- but it's not exactly a pristine deep-green grassy pasture- more like a garbage-strewn ditch- so I'm not too sure about this.

~papayas, banana, pineapple, mango, jackfruit (yuk) or imported, old, radiated apples and whatnot that are horrible. ~a decent variety of vegetables although they usually seem kind of lifeless and nutrient-poor. beets, carrots, zucchini, cucumber, some organic leafy greens too ~grains~ different kinds of rice, and wheat flours (want to avoid) ~legumes~ mung, lentil, garbanzo etc. (need to avoid)

~ghee ~ nuts, cheese, curd, spirulina, bee pollen, are also available. So the question is, how can I make the most of this? I plan to emphasize coconut and make shakes of raw milk/coconut milk with raw eggs and honey or stevia, eat bananas, papaya, pineapple and mango, green smoothies with fruits and add spirulina, vegetables with ghee, and sneak out and pay for fish once in a while? I don't do well with nuts and want to keep the sugar to a minimum although I do like papaya and mango- and of course that is the local food. Is this a do-able paleo diet? coconut, tropical fruit, eggs and fish, basically? Also I will be pursuing during this an advanced ashtanga practice and need to keep the weight down and the energy up! Any advice is appreciated and thanks for bothering to read this long post!

600c123bacc43bf566c17b19253f5779

(170)

on September 27, 2011
at 06:19 PM

Hi Kamal,thank you for your answer. I would definitely like to talk to Aravind about this. I've been reading so much anti-fruit opinion on this site that I am scared of all the fructuose I'm about to consume...

149af6e19a06675614dfbb6838a7d7c0

(3202)

on August 23, 2011
at 03:10 PM

Kamal, where in India are they. I am mainly in Mumba but I travel throughout. Do you ever come? I will meet you in the US. If your grandparents hate me then theu can get in line behind all the doctors that do here. There is some change in the US but Indian docs are 10 years behind. The weird part is, I am trying to get them to go back to the old ways. Eat closer to the ground, more ghee and coconut, yoga, herbs and meditate. They all want the Mayo Clinic. India has taught me so much. I am grateful for the coming closeness of both our countries.

Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on August 23, 2011
at 03:51 AM

Oh snap I jumped the gun. Just saw this after I posted above.

Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on August 23, 2011
at 03:49 AM

Aravind and kamal are in the middle of a low reward thirty day experiment with only minimal internet and no paleo sites or blogs. Hes eating some plain lentils, and abso lutely no chicken legs for kamal. Too high reward. :) they will be back in about three weeks, greatly transformed.

559aa134ff5e6c8bcd608ba8dc505628

(3631)

on August 23, 2011
at 01:14 AM

low-reward experiment = C O O L !

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on August 22, 2011
at 10:48 PM

Oh yeah, I forgot that you're all up in India! Good answer. Although if my grandparents know that you eat meat, they will secretly hate you.

Af1d286f0fd5c3949f59b4edf4d892f5

(18472)

on August 22, 2011
at 09:59 PM

yah where is Aravind. I exchanged comments with him on Stephan's new post from today, but he is strangely absent from PH. Aravind - where you at, foo?

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on August 22, 2011
at 09:24 PM

you might want to look at his past answers http://paleohacks.com/users/3311/aravind#axzz1VhdYwBmt he is a paleo-minded vegetarian

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on August 22, 2011
at 09:20 PM

where is Aravind? We neeed you!

  • 600c123bacc43bf566c17b19253f5779

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7 Answers

best answer

8
21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on August 22, 2011
at 10:18 PM

Hi love,

As Melissa and Jack noted above, Aravind would be a great person to address this question. Aravind is a lacto-ovo vegetarian, and is Indian American as well. He eats Indian food every day. After coming out as a vegetarian at the Ancestral Health Symposium, his diet has popped up in some posts around the web such as this one on Denise Minger's blog.

However, Aravind and I are in the midst of a 30-day low-reward experiment to reset food and technology reward circuits, and he has sworn to not log in to paleohacks.

But your message has reached him through other means apparently, and he sent me here to get you in touch with him, if you so choose. Let me know if you want to talk to Aravind, and I'll send you his email address. Now I have to go back to my low reward cave. Sorry for hiding the main point at the end of the message. Good luck!

Sincerely, Kamal

Edit: Your diet in India looks to be close to this "Island Paleo" diet, with coconut, fish, etc etc. The answers to this hack might apply to your question.

Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on August 23, 2011
at 03:51 AM

Oh snap I jumped the gun. Just saw this after I posted above.

559aa134ff5e6c8bcd608ba8dc505628

(3631)

on August 23, 2011
at 01:14 AM

low-reward experiment = C O O L !

600c123bacc43bf566c17b19253f5779

(170)

on September 27, 2011
at 06:19 PM

Hi Kamal,thank you for your answer. I would definitely like to talk to Aravind about this. I've been reading so much anti-fruit opinion on this site that I am scared of all the fructuose I'm about to consume...

7
149af6e19a06675614dfbb6838a7d7c0

on August 22, 2011
at 10:32 PM

Love, I have spent the last 3 1/2 years mostly throughout India. Unless your retreat prohibits meat, you can find it most everywhere. A lot of Hindus eat meat, some under the table. Muslims eat meat and together thats a lot of Indians. I found that even the veg Hindus will gladly cook meat and serve it to you. They were the sweetest of people. Otherwise, make friends with some Muslims and they can sneek you in some grass fed. I don't want to get you kicked out of your retreat by some peaceloving yogis so stay on the sly. This might be the time to become an insectavor. Offer to do some gardening.

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on August 22, 2011
at 10:48 PM

Oh yeah, I forgot that you're all up in India! Good answer. Although if my grandparents know that you eat meat, they will secretly hate you.

149af6e19a06675614dfbb6838a7d7c0

(3202)

on August 23, 2011
at 03:10 PM

Kamal, where in India are they. I am mainly in Mumba but I travel throughout. Do you ever come? I will meet you in the US. If your grandparents hate me then theu can get in line behind all the doctors that do here. There is some change in the US but Indian docs are 10 years behind. The weird part is, I am trying to get them to go back to the old ways. Eat closer to the ground, more ghee and coconut, yoga, herbs and meditate. They all want the Mayo Clinic. India has taught me so much. I am grateful for the coming closeness of both our countries.

1
Dd2944d3038715aa784eadf5ef5fb575

(275)

on August 22, 2011
at 11:19 PM

oh... I am sooo jealous!!! I am sure you will do wonderful things with the ingredients available!!
Enjoy!!
Namaste'

0
246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21430)

on March 08, 2012
at 12:54 PM

Fish cooked with copious coconut oil sounds the ticket. Occasional mutton (very popular there from what I've been told by my Christian and Muslim Indian friends), and pork/chicken is almost always available somewhere.

I used to be an IT Trainer that trained help desks. I had some quite awesome experiences eating in American restaurants with 10-12 folks from Mumbai. You defiantly learn a lot from the culture just through food. I also was instrumental in teaching them American food is not just pizza and cheeseburgers - and now I'm sure there are about a dozen folks back in Mumbai trying to find where to get good Mexican food.

0
17b46d8ceb8895577712e94dd3fc3a9e

on March 08, 2012
at 07:46 AM

Where or how do I apply for a job! I'm a 38 year old chef/yogi who is going to teacher training soon, but would love to travel, cook good food for good people and practice YOGA! Scott Anderson 360-961-2144

0
7d0c3ea9bf8be00b93e6433d8f125ac3

(7540)

on August 22, 2011
at 09:18 PM

Is there a reason you want to emphasise shakes so much? Why not eat cooked eggs? Anyway, you have ghee, fruit, vegetables, eggs, some dairy, and coconut, plus the fish. Seems like a decent amount of food, as long as your plan to sneak out and get fish every so often works out.

0
Ef4c5b09fdccf73be575d3a0c267fdd9

(2539)

on August 22, 2011
at 09:15 PM

Tropical fruit, perhaps some starches from potatoes, eggs, and fish is definitely paleo. You should do fine. You could ferment that raw milk into kefir and I'd say you should fair well.

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