Everyone knows the importance of getting a good night’s sleep. But many of us struggle to actually sleep for 8 or 9 hours every night. Did you know food plays an important role in getting a restful night? Paying attention to what you eat can go a long way towards getting quality sleep. Almonds, kiwi fruit, walnuts, banana, chickpeas, milk, oatmeal and white rice are food that have ingredients that enhance sleep.
Alphonse Reddy, founder and CEO of Sunday Mattresses, and Ciclo Cafe’s culinary head Mrinmoy Acharya, have shared insights on food and easy recipes that could help you sleep well.
* Oatmeal and white rice is high in carbohydrates and has been reported to induce drowsiness when consumed before bed. Oatmeal is also a source of melatonin, a hormone that is stimulated by darkness and signals your body that it is time to sleep.
* A salad for dinner would help as lettuce has lactucarium, which is considered to have sedative properties.
* Chickpeas, commonly known in India as Kabuli channa, is a surprise super food when it comes to sleep. Apart from being a rich source of protein, chickpeas are also full of vitamin B6, which helps the body to produce melatonin.
Here are some recipes:
* Quinoa, beetroot and orange salad
Quinoa – 50 gm
Hot water – 150 ml
Beetroot – one small
Fresh orange – one
Assorted lettuce – 100 gm
Olive oil – one tbsp
Balsamic vinegar – one tbsp
Roasted almond – 2 gm
Salt and pepper to taste
Method: Take a bowl, put 150 ml of hot water, soak the quinoa for 10 minutes, strain it and put it in a fresh bowl. Add some seasoning like olive oil, balsamic vinegar. Put assorted lettuce mix it properly, and then put it in a fresh serving plate. Take the beetroot, cut into small cubes, and marinate with seasoning salt pepper and balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Put these in the same plate of quinoa and top up with peeled orange slice.
* Spirulina and jalapeno hummus
Whole boiled chickpeas – 125 gm
Tahina paste – one tsp
Garlic – 1/2 tsp
Extra virgin olive oil – 2 tbsp
Lemon juice 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste
Spirulina 1/4 tea spoon or a pinch
Jalapenoes chopped – one teaspoon
Spirulina powder 1 pinch
Method: In a blender, add chickpeas, tahini, garlic, lemon juice, salt. Make a smooth paste, slowly adding in olive oil. Add spirulina powder. Add chopped jalapenos after removing from the jar. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Serve cold with toasted pita or melba toast.
* Almond milk creme brule
Almond milk – 200 ml
Fresh cream – 400 ml
Caster sugar – 80 gm
White chocolate – 60 gm
Egg yolk – 8
Demerara sugar (powdered) – 1 tbsp
Method: In a pan, heat almond milk, cream, sugar and white chocolate for a minute till sugar and chocolate dissolves. Remove and cool. Whisk in the egg yolk and strain. Pour in ramekins. Take a baking tray and place the ramekins. Cover the ramekins with silver foil. Pour water in the tray just to cover half of the ramekins. Bake for 25-30 minutes at 170 degree Celsius. Remove, cool and refrigerate. For serving, sprinkle with powdered sugar covering the top. Use a blow torch to lightly brown the sugar to form a thin layer.