The etiquette of Indian dining is one of the most novel and discrete practices in the world that never fails to get mentioned in travel books and channels. The combined flavours of spices, herbs, vegetables and fruits rolling in our tongue fed with our hands and dining with friends and relatives making eating hours one of the most important part of our cultural premise.
We are not people who really like repeating the same vegetables or fruits at least in a period of a week. Why should we when our tropical varieties are really large? Having said that, have you given a thought on how do we really differentiate between fruits and vegetables?
Okay, so before you read further categorize the following as vegetables and fruits
We eat so many varieties of fruits and vegetables but sometimes never gave a thought on what actually differentiates them other than the general notion that fruits are sweet and easily consumed uncooked, vegetables usually savoury.
By definition, botanically, A fruit is the mature ovary of a seed plant, usually developed from a flower.
A fruit is simply the seed bearing structure of a plant mostly growing out of a flower. The rest parts of a plant that are edible are the vegetables. Roots, Stem, leaves, flowers etc are vegetables.
Now check if your answers to the list were right or wrong.
GREEN PEAS Fruit
BITTER GOURD Fruit
PLANTAIN STEM Vegetable
Carrot, radish etc form edible part of the root of the plant and hence termed vegetables. Similarly potatoes, tapioca are tubers (the fleshy roots) which also come under vegetables. Cauliflower and broccoli for the flowers, Cabbage the extended leafy part of the plant and Plantain stem all come under vegetable categorization. The rest of them bear seeds including bitter gourd and brinjal. Chilies, bell peppers are seed bearing and hence fruits.
So what is for lunch? Rice or Roti? And if I say we have a bowl full of cooked dry-fruits every day, would you agree?
Cereal grains are also a type of fruit - a dry one-seeded fruit in which the ovary wall is united with the seed coat, typical of grasses and cereals. So basically rice, wheat, corn kernels are typically seeds – dried seeds often called dry fruits.
But remember an unripe corn is a vegetable!
Pulses, lentils are all seeds that grow in a pod. A pea pod is a fruit and Pea by itself a seed.
So how many vegetables and fruits did you eat for LUNCH today???