1. It is hard to think of an Indian snack that is not fried. However, we need to be aware of
what happens to oil when it is heated. When oil begins to smoke, it is a good indication that it
has been heated too much. At this temperature, chemical changes begin to take place, which
have many health risks. Of course, this is tricky. If the oil is not hot enough, then more of it
is absorbed, and the resultant product is quite soggy and unfit to eat.
Further, prolonged heating of oil at high temperature, i.e., at its smoking point or higher,
leads to its degradation. A substance called acrolein is formed which can irritate the stomach
lining. Oil that has decomposed to acrolein will be dark and viscous. Normally, this does not
happen when food is fried at home. But as oil is expensive we are not willing to put it down
the drain after having used it only once. The common tendency is to set aside any oil that is
left over to use another time. And repeated use of the same oil guarantees the formation of
acrolein with all its undesirable effects.
In fact, some experts suggest that oil should not be held at its smoking temperature for
more than 15 minutes at a time. This time span, as everyone knows, is hardly sufficient to
prepare required number of pooris for even a small family of four. Sadly, olive and corn oils
are not widely available in our markets. Both these oils can be heated to higher temperature
before they start smoking.
Even heart-friendly oils like those made from sunflower are also not spared from these
effects. The harmful chemical changes will take place if oil is heated to high temperatures for
a long time, or if it is used over and over again. Still, vegetable fats are recommended for
frying over animal fats like butter and ghee because they are less likely to cause heart disease. Another problem arises when used oil is stored under less than satisfactory conditions. If the
oil is not stored in an airtight container which, additionally, allow light to pass through, then it
will deteriorate further because of the effect of oxygen and light on the oil.
By and large, these undesirable effects result when food is deep-fried. So eat deep fried food
occasionally. This does not mean that we can no longer enjoy the flavour and palatability of
fried foods. Some food like tikkis land themselves to both deep and shallow frying. Oil from
shallow frying is rarely left over, so that takes away the worry about decomposed oil. And
every batch of frying will require fresh oil, oil that has not been used before.
The practice of heating small amounts of mustard, black gram, dal, curry leaves, chillies and
the like in a little oil before they are added to curries and vegetables and meat dishes, is
called tempering. Tempering is not meant solely to lend a fine flavour to the food. It has a
nutritional benefit as well. Certain vitamins ? A, D, E and K are soluble only in fat, and in
order that they are absorbed in the human guts, some fat has to be present in the same
meal, preferably in the same dish. To get the benefit of the carotene in carrots, for example,
temper them with a little oil, mustard and curry leaves.
a.On the basis of your reading of the passage, make notes on it using headings and sub
headings and giving a suitable title. Use recognizable abbreviations wherever necessary.

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