The Prosperity of A Banana Leaf
South India has an abiding tradition of using banana leaves to serve food. They have their purposes in ornamental and emblematic objectives in the festive seasons of South India. Even the dry banana leaf has its usage for building homes, fences, and roofs.
Chronicles of the banana leaf: The banana leaves’ history includes it’s use in the ceremonies of Hindu and Buddhist. In Africa, they symbolized women’s fertility and used for rituals done to make the women fertile. The banana leaves’ flowers are infertile, and for this reason, Buddha referred to it as a symbol of emptiness in earthly properties.
Perks of the mighty leaf: Banana leaves are eco-friendly, pliable, and impermeable that can be used as a tray for food and easily disposable. They will decompose speedily, and they are themselves the delicious food for domestic animals like cows, sheep, etc. The leaves are more hygienic than the utensils that involve the usage of soap and other chemicals to cleanse them. If placed in the fridge, they can last up to a week after harvesting.
Polyphenol, the natural antioxidant and the Lord Yama for many diseases, is present in Banana leaves in large quantities. The anti-bacterial properties that exist in the banana leaf can be a germ fighter. In South India, many individuals will be sitting on the floor when they are eating in a banana leaf.
When a person sits on the floor (a prominent posture in yoga), a large number of muscles will function than when one sits on a chair. The hips will be open, making the legs more flexible, and it also bolsters the lumbar region of the body, reducing the stress.
The art of using a banana leaf: In South India, there is a hidden craft in utilizing a banana leaf. It may look like an easy task, but the person who eats must be a connoisseur to enjoy the feast. From placing the banana leaf in a correct direction or folding the banana leaf, in the end, there are some crucial rules that you must follow.
Kindly follow these steps if you want to return in one piece,
●Rinse the banana leaf well with hot water and tap it dry.
●Cut the banana leaf to a platter, plate, or bowl (as per your wish). Mostly, use kitchen scissors to cut it.
●Now you should place the leaf in a specific way: the tip of the banana leaf must be on the left-hand side (according to the diner). The sage surmises that the creation of the universe occurs on the left side, and the decimation occurs on the right side.
●And you must sprinkle some water in it, clean it with your hand, and pat the leaf dry.
●After finishing the meal, one must fold the upper half of the leaf towards the lower half of the banana leaf. South Indians have believed that wasting food is a sin. So, one must fold the banana leaf in a subtle way of hiding the food that the person wasted.
If one folds it from lower to upper, it is a way of insulting the family who is conducting the feast, and it is like telling them that the relationship between the person and the family is no more.
The fashion in food placements: Each type of food must be present in a particular space. It would be easy to spot the type of food that the diner is willing to eat at that time. On the top-right side, side dishes are present that are mix with rice. The top-left side is the less eaten items like pickles, papadum, salt, etc. The rice will be present in the bottom - center. Besides, the unwanted things, that the person doesn’t like (such as onion peel, curry leaves), can be placed at the bottom-right side. The rice is separated based on the quantity of the rice that the person needs in the particular round. The unwanted rice is set aside on the bottom left side.
If eating in banana leaf is music, then the south Indians are the Mozarts in their way. The style of consuming Rasam in a banana leaf without spilling a single drop can be accomplished only by a pro. It is a winnable war for a South Indian and a revengeful short story for others. The reason for this is because the south Indians have the experience of eating a banana leaf from the day when they were born. However, it will be a fun-filled journey for everyone in this world.