I would like to clearly mention here that this is purely my knowledge of Balanced diet after delivery and not a common practice around all places in world. The method of taking care of the new born baby and delivered mother, the vegetables, recipes are purely my version.
Now I start with my description:
Preparation for Delivery:
From 9 month of pregnancy, daily, the mother should massage the hip and stomach of the pregnant women with gingelly oil and should gently massage it with warm water.
There may be many chances for a pregnant lady to deliver a baby before the due date. So in 9 month itself, we should prepare ourselves to take all the necessary things for the delivery. Things like, night dress, flask, changing dress, inners, dress for the babies, towel, comb, etc should be taken in a separate bag. We can call this as a labour bag.
When the pregnant woman gets pain, we can check whether it is a false pain or labour pain using cumin seeds kashayam. Take 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds and and dry fry in a pan, add 1.5 cups of water to it and allow the water to become ½ cup. Give this to the pregnant women. If it is a false pain, then the pain will go off. If it is a real labour pain, this kashayam will make the pain develop further. This is the correct time to start to the hospital. All set to go.
With God’s Grace the child is born. Mother and baby are fine. Please follow the doctor’s advice with respect to food and other things till the new born and the new mother are in hospital. After returning home, we can start the pathiya samayal.
In olden days, when I was young, for the new mother, the elderly women in house will steam cook idly’s and give only 4 idly’s to her. Mother or elderly women in the house cook idly for the new mother and pour 1 teaspoon of ghee over the idlies and serve with little sugar. For the lunch, it is pathiya samayal and for dinner it is only Parboiled rice porridge(puzhungal arisi kanji) with manathakali vathal fried in ghee along with narthangai pickle or sutta appalam. This is the balanced diet for the first 10 days after delivery. Sukku water will be given for the new mother. We have to take sukku(dry ginger) and make it a powder and mix it with hot water and give it to the new mother. Also, all the 3 times when the mother have the food, they will be given beetle leaves. She has to eat the beetle leaves before she feed the baby after food. Beetle leaves are good for digestion.
On the 11th day, we call it as kulimurai. We have to keep ready gingelly oil, ginger and pepper. Heat the gingelly oil and to it add ginger powder, pepper and remove from flame.
Take a Winnowing basket(In tamil we call as Muram) and put kolam in it. Keep this near pooja room and place a silk cloth over the winnow. First using the gingelly oil we prepared, bath the baby. Wipe the baby with a towel and put a new dress and place the baby on the winnow. Elderly woman in the house has to first take the baby from the winnow.
Then we have to call the delivered mother, and take the gingelly oil and need to massage the hair, stomach, and hip. Bath her with hot water and massage the hip nicely. Use sheeyakaai powder and wash the hair. Also apply turmeric powder to the whole body. After bath, wipe the hair and body completely and give her new clothes. Then immediately give her sukku(dry ginger powder) with jaggery. Also give her little salt with raw rice and ask her to eat. In the mean time, take a spatula/slotted spoon and heat at the end and ask the new mother to squeeze mother’s milk into the heated portion of the spatula/slotted spoon using both the breasts. Take care while squeezing as the spatula/spotted spoon is hot. We should hear a ‘zzz’ sound when the breast milk touches the hot region of spatula. Then the new mother can take the new born baby and feed the baby.The same procedure has to be repeated on 15, 18, and 21st day after the child birth. Based on the delivery whether it is normal/c-section, we can arrange for a punniyajalam/naming ceremony.
The above said tradition may differ for each families. I have given this based on my knowledge.
Now I am going to start with the Balanced Diet(Pathiya Samayal) Recipes.
Pathiya samayal is a special cooking after delivery. Whenever a mother give birth to a child, especially in south india, elderly women in house will prepare pathiya samayal for the women who gave birth to the child. This is to ensure that the delivered mother gets healthy dish which will reach the child through her milk. Pathiya samayal is a well balanced nutrition rich food for the new mom's. It is believed that this pathiya samayal will increase the supply of breast milk.
The first 45 days period after delivery is crucial for any mother because whatever she is eating will have direct effect on the new born child. So mother has to be very cautious in her intake. She should avoid certain vegetables and usual way of cooking to prevent health issues in new born. Now a days doctors are advising all the mother to take normal diet after delivery. This pathiya samayal is not recommended by any doctor, but pathiya samayal has its own advantages. So i recommend all the delivered mothers to follow the pathiya samayal instead of the usual cooking to avoid any health issues for both mother and the new born. However seek the advice from your family elder's also before you follow the below instruction.
1. Take green vegetables and fruits as advised by doctors. We can take more drumstick which aid in production of more breast milk. Other than this, we can take carrot, beans, green vegetables. Try to avoid root vegetables. We can include snake gourd but try to avoid this during winter as it is a cold vegetable.
2. Take food at proper times. Do not skip any session.
3. Dinner has to be completed before 7pm as it will help in digestion. The new moms will have digestion issue so it is always recommended to eat before 7pm in the night. Eat beetle leaves(Vetrrilai along with paaku) to enhance the digestion.
4. Drink plenty of water to avoid constipation issue.
5. Do not take oil fried appalam. Better to use sutta appalam.
6. Take oil bath as per the custom of each house. Normally, we take alternate day oil bath and after oil bath use sambrani to dry the hair to avoid wetness and prevent cold.
7. Do not eat anything too hot or too cold.
8. Do not eat fried snacks or items
9. Include garlic in pathiya samayal as this will enhance the production of mother's breast milk.
10. Avoid gas-causing vegetables.
11. Upto 30 days, after the mother take bath, she should be given marundhu and after that the mom has to take breakfast/milk/horlicks before seeing the new born kid.
12. Always good to give sweet lime juice mixed in hot water in the afternoon session for the new moms.
13. After 45 days, on an auspicious day, we can make the mom to touch salt, tamarind and then we can follow the normal cooking for the new moms.
14. Grind dry ginger powder with jaggery and can be given to the mom. Always better to boil the water and add dry ginger powder(Sukku) and then give that water to mom.
For oil bath:
Take 2 teaspoon of gingelly oil along with 1/2 teaspoon of urdal, 1 red chilli, 1 pepper, 1 virali manjal(Turmeric stick) and keep it in low flame and heat the oil. Apply this oil in the new mom's hair and then ask her to take oil bath.
This powder is generally used for all curry(Poriyal) varieties and also for rasam.
- Heat the ghee in a pan and fry all the above ingredients till the urdal turns golden brown color.
- Grind this in a mixer to a nice powder.
- Add this to poriyal or rasam along with curry leaves and salt.
Dhaniya (coriander seeds) - 2 tablespoon
Neem Flower - 2 teaspoon
Sundaikkai vathal - 2 teaspoon
Pepper - 1/2 teaspoon
Cumin seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Salt - To taste
- Heat a heavy bottomed pan, and add all ingredients and dry fry the ingredients
- Grind all the ingredients in a mixer to a nice powder
- Serve the angaya podi with hot rice and ghee. This powder is good for stomach.
Gingelly oil - 1 teaspoon
- Heat oil in pan and thurdal, pepper and salt and fry till the dal turns golden brown color.
- Grind this in a mixer along with curry leaves and serve with hot rice
- Heat tamarind in flame and soak in water and extract the juice in a vessel.
- Along with the tamarind juice add the kalathu powder, salt and allow the rasam to boil
- Heat ghee in a pan and when the ghee is hot, add mustard seeds and cumin seeds and allow it to sputter and then add this seasoned ingredient to the boiling rasam and remove the rasam from flame.
- Serve the rasam with hot rice.
- Heat the tamarind in flame and soak in water and extract the tamarind juice and keep it aside
- Heat ghee in a pan and fry the manathakkali vathal till it turns crisp. Take it in a plate and keep it aside
- Heat oil in pan, add mustard seeds, when the mustard seeds starts to sputter, add urdal, broken red chilli, thur dal and fry till the dals turns golden brown color
- To this add tamarind extract and salt and allow the vathakuzhambu to boil
- When the raw smell of tamarind goes off, add the fried manathakkali vathal and curry leaves and remove from flame
- Serve vathakuzhambu with hot rice and sutta appalam
Parboiled Rice Porridge ( Puzhungal Arisi Kanji) :
Parboiled Rice(Puzhungal Arisi) - 1 kg
Omam - 50gms
Badam - 20
Cashew - 20
Palm Sugar - as needed
Method for preparing porridge flour:
- Rinse the parboiled rice in water, and in a clean white dhoti or towel spread the wet rice evenly
- Allow the wet rice to dry in the towel
- Take the dried rice in a container and add omam, badam and cashew
- Grind the above ingredients in a rice mill to a nice powder.
- You can also try grinding it in a mixer in home in smaller quantities and sieve to remove lumps and again grind the lumps to get a nice kanji powder.
- Clean your hands and vessels to start preparing porridge. Hygiene is more important as this for the toddlers.
- Soak some palm sugar in water, and extract the juice using a filter to avoid sand
- After preparing the porridge powder,based on the age of the baby, take little quantity(1 teaspoon) on the first day and add little water to in and stir well to avoid lumps.
- Keep the diluted porridge flour in flame and keep stirring and add little water again and make sure the porridge is cooked completely and it becomes semi-solid.
- Add palm/cane sugar, and stir well and remove from flame.
- Once the porridge cools off give it to baby in smaller quantities. Make sure this new diet suits your baby and does not upset their stomach.
- Once this porridge suits your baby, then slowly increase the quantity.
- Take one ingredient at a time, wet a clean rough surface with water and rub it in a rough surface only once.
- Repeat the same step for the other ingredients
- Take the medicine from the surface and mix with mother's breast milk and feed the baby
- We can use sandalwood stone to rub the ingredients