The thali is a metal plate, a kind of tray with several compartments. Served in a traditional way, all the dishes arrive together, with the dessert! In South India, thali can be served on a banana leaf, best to try it at The Bangala in Chettinad Region. Most thali contain: white rice, chapatis, dal (lentils), vegetable preparation (curry, korma), chutneys, raita (beaten yogurt) and dessert.
in India each meal is accompanied by bread, more like flat bread or roti or chapatti. In the most frequent, the most limited places, you will always have chapattis. Sometimes accompanied only by rice and vegetables, these small pancakes are an integral part of the daily thali and allow the dish to be seasoned. Every Indian knows how to prepare chapattis. A better, tastier pancake because it is cooked over a wood fire, it is the naan. Well known abroad, this pancake can be garnished with garlic, (garlic naan) cheese (cheese naan) or simply butter (butter naan). The naans are cooked in the tandoori. Finally famous in South India, parathas differ from other pancakes because their dough contains a little fat, hence their smoother taste. They can also be stuffed with potato,a special treat at breakfast!
In a predominantly vegetarian country, meat is replaced by other proteins contained, for example, in lentils. Most of the time they are cooked in oil with spices, depending on their colour there are different recipes. Consider the yellow lentils (yellow dhal) and the creamy recipe for black lentils (dal makhani).
Momos are the Himalayan Dimsums that you will find in restaurants or small eateries on the road in Nepal, Ladakh or Tibet and even at nooks of Delhi and nearby areas. They are either steamed or fried. There is something for everyone, stuffed with vegetables or stuffed with meat. They are eaten with a spicy sauce and sometimes a soup.
Dosas are a specialty of South India. These large, thin and salty pancakes are made from rice flour, lentils or chickpeas. Very popular, they are served with a spicy vegetable broth and a coconut chutney. The famous masala dosa is filled with potatoes with spices and sliced onions!
A trip without chai or Masala Tea is like an Indian without a moustache. It is the Indian national drink that we never refuse. Ideal for taking short breaks and chatting with the locals, by the roadside or in the alleys of an old town. You'll love this addicting little cardamom taste, you can drink it without worry! This boiled milk tea is flavored with many spices: cloves, cinnamon, ginger and cardamom. Another Indian specialty: try the lassi. This smooth yogurt drink is delicious, plain or with fruit.
Tandoori is a way of cooking a dish, mainly in northern India and the Himalayas. The tandoor is a hollow terracotta oven where skewers garnished with chicken or paneer are dipped and where the famous naans are cooked. The preparation called Tikka is a spicy marinade that is applied to tandoori skewers.
The meaning of the term curry is different in India and France. In Indian cuisine, curry refers to a dish in gravy sauce made from a mixture of spices (masala). There are different recipes cooked in this way, including the excellent fish curry in South India. This is usually complemented by an aromatic plant called curry that many Indians grow at home.
Kebabs don't look like sandwiches like in Europe. These are skewers that are mainly found in North India. Mutton, chicken, paneer or vegetables, the pieces are marinated before being cooked in the tandoor. Quite spicy kebabs are one of the specialties of the Old Delhi district of the capital.
Biryani is a cooked rice that is cooked in a pilaf style, with many spices. It can be vegetarian or with meat, often sprinkled with small raisins and cashews. Served in the form of a pyramid, it is a dish in itself. Opt for a raita (yogurt) to calm the heat of the spices.
India immediately evokes a word: "spicy". If there is a country with a rich gastronomy that stands out for its variety, it is India. As many spices and vegetables as the diversity of the subcontinent. Both producer and consumer, it is in Kerala that you can visit the spice gardens that have made the reputation of the region. Still as important today the spice market is in Fort Cochin. The prestigious black pepper, the excellent turmeric (turmeric in English) or cardamom are among the best spices in the world. Masala means the mixture of spices, not necessarily spicy.Where to eat?
During your trip to India, Shanti Travel gives you all the good addresses to discover the unique gastronomy of India.