Leeds & West Yorkshire

Bradford restaurant in lower-fat curry bid

Faz Rehman (r) and one of his chefs
Image caption High blood pressure and diabetes made Mr Rehman take another look at his cooking and lifestyle

A West Yorkshire businessman is claiming that Britain's favourite dish, the curry, can be a lower-fat dish.

Faz Rehman, from Bradford, who is opening a restaurant that does not use oil in cooking, said: "You can still have the same taste."

His chefs are learning to cook with a jug of water beside them - the water being used instead of oil.

However, Mohammed Aslam of the Aagrah restaurant chain was rather doubtful. He said: "You need good quality oils".

Mr Aslam, executive chef and managing director of the West Yorkshire-based chain, added: "Only the very minimum oil needed to cook should be added, there should be no excess oil."

Different oils

Mr Rehman who is opening the Jumerah restaurant is not a chef by trade but recent ill-health, including high blood pressure and diabetes, made him look again at his cooking and lifestyle.

He claimed a curry dish, cooked his way, is about half the calories of a more traditionally-prepared dish.

James Evans, a dietician with Bradford Teaching Hospitals Trust, said it was not a matter of curry being healthy or unhealthy but that the type and amount of oil used was important.

Mr Evans said: "We recommend using no more than half a tablespoon of oil per person when cooking a curry."

He added that vegetable oil or olive oil was preferable to using ghee.

Type 2 diabetes, which is prevalent in Bradford's Asian population, is linked to obesity among a variety of other factors.

Health advice is that keeping oil to a minimum when cooking will limit calories.

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