Prasad- safe to eat for westerners?

#1 Jul 6th, 2016, 04:14
Join Date:
Jul 2016
Location:
California
Posts:
6
  • kriyabass is offline
#1
A friend of mine told me he never eats the prasad in India, as it would make him sick. What are you all's experiences? I will be in Puri and would like to eat Mahaprasad from Jagannath temple...it sounds delicious. Have any westerners tried it? It is made in their own kitchen so I thought it might be fresher and less likely to cause digestion trouble. Thanks
#2 Jul 6th, 2016, 04:34
Join Date:
Sep 2001
Location:
Land that shakes and bakes.
Posts:
15,820
  • edwardseco is offline
#2
Without tempting fate I am still kickin'. I follow the rule given to me decades ago. Eat or drink anything set before me. I have drunk chocolate colored water in a village with unusual geology and even eaten my nemesis...
Karela (mountain gourd?) many times. I worry about other things like how to pay for my book purchases. Actually, my in laws would say I never worry about those. They worry about being able to pay those. Not worrying keeps up my resistance and therefore affords good health..
#3 Jul 6th, 2016, 14:26
Join Date:
Oct 2004
Location:
Chennai, India
Posts:
70,773
  • Nick-H is offline
#3
I would say, reasonably safe.

You can get sick in a 5-star or a street stall. A plate washed in dirty water... a guy with a stomach upset who didn't wash his hands... These things are more likely to cause sickness than the food itself --- unless you eat in places that are obviously dirty and don't have much business to keep the food recently cooked.

(leaving aside the old-but-gold guidebook no-noes such as tap water, salad that was probably washed in it, and ice cream that gets thawed and refrozen in low-turnover restaurants with power cuts. Believe it or not, Indians get sick from this stuff too, not only foreigners! )

I am not an avid temple goer, so I may not be the best "sample" to take on this. I've eaten prasadam two or three times in the past several months, though: no ill effect. Small temples, where the food probably comes from someone's home kitchen. I've never got sick from wedding/other-religious-function food, even though I may have observed that the preparation doesn't look like text book hygiene.
~
Life gets aadhar every day.
.
#4 Jul 6th, 2016, 16:06
Join Date:
Nov 2015
Location:
New Delhi
Posts:
43
  • DilliDiaries is offline
#4
You can get sick if you are seriously allergic to the ingredients. As simple as that. Otherwise Prashaad served in most of the big temples is generally safe (My experience). I enjoy the "Halwa" served at Banglasahib and Harmandar Sahib gurudwaras in New Delhi and Amritsar respectively. Puri temple is a well known temple all over the world so I guess their prashaad would definitely be good for you. P.S. I have never been to that side of the country. If you are allergic to wheat or any other most commonly used food item, you should ask before consuming it. But hygienic? I think there should be no problem. Enjoy
#5 Jul 6th, 2016, 16:17
Join Date:
Apr 2009
Location:
Almora
Posts:
6,833
  • jituyadav is offline
#5
Quote:
Originally Posted by kriyabass View Post I will be in Puri and would like to eat Mahaprasad from Jagannath temple...it sounds delicious.
I know many who had it and lived to tell the tale. Places like Puri and other big temples are generally safe and hygienic, but it is not a rule, so if you have doubts, avoid it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by edwardseco View Post I follow the rule given to me decades ago. Eat or drink anything set before me.
In my view, that is not a good rule to follow. If I have seen Prasad, food, drinks etc made in exceptional hygenic conditions, I have seen more of them being prepared with absolute disregards to basic hygiene and ethics.

You are lucky is all I can say. Sometimes, it is better to be disrespectful than prospects of spending time on a hospital bed.
If you find my posts confrontationist, please bear, I am an old frustrated guy who has nothing better to do than sit on rocking chair and curse the world whole day
#6 Jul 6th, 2016, 17:17
Join Date:
Oct 2004
Location:
Chennai, India
Posts:
70,773
  • Nick-H is offline
#6
Indeed. Just because edwardseco has the constitution of a bison does not make his lead good to follow
#7 Jul 6th, 2016, 17:51
Join Date:
Mar 2007
Location:
Switzerland, at the moment in Thailand
Posts:
3,352
  • atala is offline
#7
The most common Prasad that you get in Puri is Khaja, a type of deepfried, hard, crispy sweet (see it here, the third item if you scroll down), that is always ok to eat. Then, there are the regular cooked items, mainly rice, maybe with some dal, this is already a bit iffy (can be old, since many offerings are done in the temple all the time), but if taken in very small bits the way it is distributed, it should be ok. It is distributed outside the Puri temple door, one actually has to buy it, afaik, I would not take much of that. The third version is that someone procures whole pots of rice for you, that can be dangerous, if you eat by scraping the pots empty. I saw someone getting terrible diarrhea for long time from this. But from the Khajas, I would not worry at all.
#8 Jul 6th, 2016, 18:10
Join Date:
Mar 2007
Location:
Switzerland, at the moment in Thailand
Posts:
3,352
  • atala is offline
#8
At other places it is safer, for instance at Govindaji temple in the Royal temple compound in Jaipur, where some kind of sweet is also sold and distributed by the devotees in a kind of merry-making style, this stuff is also safe to eat. (If you can go to Jaipur, you have to see the Managala aarthi early morning at this temple at least once; you can spend hours there, enjoying the sweetest songs people sing in praise of their beloved deity.)

If you are visiting Vrindavan and stay longer and have no place to eat, you can arrange to get the prasad at some temple, like at Radha-Raman in the center of town. Those food items are generally safe, since freshly cooked.

If anything ever looks stale and unsavory, don't eat it; don't just eat things thinking it's prasad, so you have to, or it won't do anything to you.

One thing to be weary of, is the Charanamrita offered at various temples. A type of scented water, often with Tulasi leaves, which you get in small spoons (it is often for self-service, but sometimes some Pujari offers it, and it feels awkward to refuse it). A way to accept that is to sprinkle it over one's head instead of sipping it.
#9 Jul 7th, 2016, 00:08
Join Date:
Oct 2004
Location:
Chennai, India
Posts:
70,773
  • Nick-H is offline
#9
Never feel that you are obliged to accept, or eat, prasadam. True, it is probably more tactful to refuse it than to throw it away, but if you do accept it and have second thoughts, or find it highly spiced, or whatever, it's your stomach.
#10 Jul 7th, 2016, 02:19
Join Date:
Aug 2004
Location:
cloud
Posts:
1,480
  • RPG is offline
#10
Since prasad is holy, it cannot carry any infections. Just like the waters of the Ganga, which are brown with feces but absolutely sterile. However, if you get sick, it will only be because you do not sincerely believe this.
#11 Jul 7th, 2016, 02:59
Join Date:
Sep 2001
Location:
Land that shakes and bakes.
Posts:
15,820
  • edwardseco is offline
#11
Quote:
You are lucky is all I can say. Sometimes, it is better to be disrespectful than prospects of spending time on a hospital bed
Bison or not the cost benefit analysis indicates little marginal cost from taking on one more food item produced under dubious circumstances is so modest. The comment about 5 * hotels is so appropo. The Taj Vivanta food is very much excluded in that category. The extra or marginal benefit of showing you are not a stuck up (excluded under TOS) is truly vast. One of my most productive experiences was going with some forens to a village. They declined the proferred pani and I heard the response in Marathi. I reached over saying in the same, thank you give me some. It completely upstaged the big shots which I have learned to doubt in terms of what goes on in development (or doesn't)..
#12 Jul 7th, 2016, 03:58
Join Date:
Aug 2004
Location:
Vermont
Posts:
14,519
  • hfot2 is offline
#12
Quote:
Originally Posted by kriyabass View Post ...I will be in Puri and would like to eat Mahaprasad from Jagannath temple...it sounds delicious. Have any westerners tried it?...
At a quick skim of this thread, I don't see anyone mentioning that Westerners can't get into the Jagannath Temple in Puri unless they are certifiably Hindu by birth.
Walt Whitman - Song of Myself

Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)
#13 Jul 7th, 2016, 04:09
Join Date:
Jan 2010
Location:
London (UK) (Current) & Pali Hill, Bombay (IN)
Posts:
8,904
  • ViShVa is offline
#13
Quote:
Originally Posted by hfot2 View Post At a quick skim of this thread, I don't see anyone mentioning that Westerners can't get into the Jagannath Temple in Puri unless they are certifiably Hindu by birth.
I'm not certified (yet), (insane or) Hindu, but then I don't adulate temples or priests.

I eat prasad at 'em temples which/when I visit as a tourist, because the turnover is so high in popular temples, that I know it is freshly cooked.

No time for it to go off. If you are offered the same at a deserted shrine, skulk away. Bacteria loves stagnation.

As far as Puri's Jagannath is concerned, others will know better.
#14 Jul 7th, 2016, 05:12
Join Date:
Oct 2004
Location:
Chennai, India
Posts:
70,773
  • Nick-H is offline
#14
Quote:
Originally Posted by edwardseco View Post Bison or not the cost benefit analysis indicates little marginal cost from taking on one more food item produced under dubious circumstances is so modest. The comment about 5 * hotels is so appropo. The Taj Vivanta food is very much excluded in that category. The extra or marginal benefit of showing you are not a stuck up (excluded under TOS) is truly vast. One of my most productive experiences was going with some forens to a village. They declined the proferred pani and I heard the response in Marathi. I reached over saying in the same, thank you give me some. It completely upstaged the big shots which I have learned to doubt in terms of what goes on in development (or doesn't)..
Hats off to the Bison

But didn't you catch one of those nasty diseases many years back? Or was it a mossie/carried one? Or maybe I'm getting you confused with the buffalo!

It must be offputting to the locals to see the look of fear on the face of a tourist offered one of their food items. In fact I know it is, because I have been the offerer

Even the humble glass of water seems, sometimes, to require a "Would you like me to explain the technology and the cost of our water purifier?" to got with it.

But I still say, if you feel uncertain, pass politely. Try not to look as if someone has just offered you a punch in the face, though. Indians are used to other Indians refusing the food.
#15 Jul 7th, 2016, 05:31
Join Date:
Oct 2004
Location:
you essay
Posts:
4,390
  • ananda2193 is offline
#15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick-H View Post It must be offputting to the locals to see the look of fear on the face of a tourist offered one of their food items. In fact I know it is, because I have been the offerer

Even the humble glass of water seems, sometimes, to require a "Would you like me to explain the technology and the cost of our water purifier?" to got with it.

But I still say, if you feel uncertain, pass politely. Try not to look as if someone has just offered you a punch in the face, though. Indians are used to other Indians refusing the food.
You can always make an excuse like I'm allergic to ? if you know the recipe. Or a diabetic if Prasad is concerned. Only ate Prasad I think in Pushkar and was very sweet. And didn't get sick. Little white balls if sugar.
"Travel is fatal to prejudice,bigotry and narrow-mindedness" Mark Twain

Similar Threads

Title, Username, & Date Last Post Replies Views Forum
Safe to eat raw veges? Jul 24th, 2011 03:37 20 5382 Health and Well Being in India
Is dried fruit safe to eat in India? Nov 28th, 2010 07:13 47 7287 Health and Well Being in India
To eat or not to eat? That is the question... Dec 7th, 2004 04:50 27 7797 Indian Railways


Posting Rules

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Forum Rules»
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.3.2
© IndiaMike.com 2018
Page Load Success