Urban Rajah: Food Author, Cook, Traveller And Lifestyle Adventurer
‘The chapatti shuffle is an exceptional manoeuvre. It requires dexterity, loose shoulders, a wobbly head and dry hands. It’s one of my earliest memories of growing up in Slough, a town that defines multiculturalism’
…And so begins the story of Urban Rajah, the self-confessed dandy brought up where terraced living was shared with his brother, mother, father and a pair of orange curtains.
Ivor Peters aka Urban Rajah is a food author, cook, traveller and lifestyle adventurer with roots deep in the Indian subcontinent. A second-generation immigrant and a son of 1970s Britain, he grew up on hot summers, street cricket and spiced Indian food, which has narrated his life. His cookbook Urban Rajah's Curry Memoirs (Headline, £16.99) is packed full of inspiring stories and generations-old recipes, opening the door into a world of family cooking that teaches us how to cook delicious curry in our own homes.
Every year Britain spends £3.5bn on Indian food, however this ‘curry economy’ is almost entirely based on takeaways and Indian restaurants. People fear spice - but they shouldn't. Urban Rajah is on the campaign trail to make Indian food accessible to the every day cook, fit for every palette and for the smallest or tallest.
The Healthy Option
Urban Rajah believes that a curry diet is the answer to staying young and healthy. Did you know that curry & spice have extensive health benefits?
Better moods – lean red meat in curries such as beef, pork and lamb not only provide a significant number of B vitamins which are essential for helping the body to release energy from food, but they can also enhance mood and promote a more positive state of mind.
Lower’s risk of cancer - Tomato based curries are a great source of lycopene. This extremely powerful antioxidant is far more prevalent in cooked tomatoes than raw ones.
Reduced risk of heart disease - Regular consumption of cooked tomatoes also prevents the formation of blood clots, lowering the risk of heart attacks and strokes by as much as 48%. Many spices, such as curry powder and paprika may also help to cut the risk of heart disease as they contain salicylic acid, a compound that scientists believe may work to stem inflammation in the blood vessels that could otherwise lead to hardening of the arteries.
Increased metabolic rate - Several clinical research studieshave found that an ingredient known as capsaicin found in spices, particularly chilli, can raise the metabolic rate for as long as three hours after a curry.
Reduced risk of Alzheimer's - According to researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles, a chemical found in the spice Turmeric called curcumin can reduce the build-up of knots in the brain that can cause Alzheimer's by as much as 50 per cent. This may help to explain why Alzheimer's affects just 1 per cent of people over the age of 65 living in some Indian villages. Turmeric has also been found to improve memory, aid digestion, reduce inflammation, fight infection and guard against heart attacks.
Boost the immune system – paprika, chilli and other spices trigger the body’s natural defences to produce extra mucus, trapping viruses and soothing inflamed passages.
Reduced blood pressure - Coriander, another common ingredient of Indian curries, contains high levels of antioxidants that help to lower high blood pressure and prevent their formation.
Increased energy - A lamb curry can provide up to 50% of the iron a woman needs in a day, boosting energy.
A stronger immune system - Research shows that garlic contains allicin, which is antibiotic, antifungal and may even be antiviral.
Bettering lives through food
Not only does Urban Rajah look good, cook good food, he also does good. Aiming to better peoples’ lives through food, whether enlivening the sense through eating fantastic Indian fare, or by enriching the spirit by giving away at least 10% of Urban Rajah profits from events, products and experiences. Additionally Urban Rajah donates 100% of profits from his Cash n Curry supper club to projects in Chennai’s slums, India. This social enterprise focuses on helping those who have been trafficked, or are without the basic human rights of health and education.
So fire up the rickshaw and experience life the Urban Rajah way:
See & Taste > at the Great Indian Food Feast
Cook > from the book
Read > theblog
Urban Rajah brings together a distillation of global culture, stories from a vibrant past fuelled by migration, ideas and trends, diverse ideas and international trends, a celebration of the individual, and an insatiable thirst for life Urban Rajah’s philosophy seeks to bring together like-minded people, who seek pockets of radiance in everyday life.
That's the Urban Rajah www.urbanrajah.com @urbanrajah
For recipes follow this link