The land of Himachal is a home to many beautiful hills standing tall and reaching the sky. The cold breeze plays within the mountain ranges touching the peaks and running down to the feet. The picturesque land of Himachal will leave your mouths agape with its aesthetic beauties and shall make your mouth water with its culinary delicacies. The cuisines of Himachal Pradesh show a wide variety in taste and presentation.
The food of this state is quite simple and it is made delicious with the addition of copious amout of ghee. The non-vegetarian cuisines of Himachal Pradesh use spices like cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and red chillies.
Culinary Delights : Paani Ki Gharaats, Maahni or Urad Daal, Madra, Luchi-Poti or Lamb Intestines, Dham.
Usual Meal in Himamchal :
A typical meal in Himachal Pradesh comprises dal, roti, sabzi and chawal. Lentil broth, vegetable dish with bread and rice meal are commonly found in the state. Rice is the staple food in Himachal and it is served with a Maahni, which has a pungent smell and contains dried raw mangoes. You will also get a dish of lentils or Madra, cooked in yoghurt, along with the rice and Maahni. These foods are used almost in all the states of India and hence Himachal never creates trouble for national tourists. The special dishes in Himachal are prepared during festive occasions.
Madra A Forte of Chamba :
A unique food in Himachal is Madra that is speciality in Chamba region. This food preparation involves 20 spices and it contains pulses named Rajmah, which is cooked in yoghurt and ghee, under low flame.
Among the non-vegetarian food, most commonly found preparation is lamb intestines and this dish is specially prepared during winter. The fresh corn flour in Himachal is a tasty food as it is ground carefully in water propelled mills. Bread made of fresh corn flour is usually eaten with milk during the breakfast. The hardy mountain inhabitants of Himachal usually take buttermilk as they can digest it easily and it also keeps helps them to withstand the harsh cold weather.
Sidu A tasty Fluffy Bread :
Sidu is a form of bread prepared from wheat flour. The flour is first kneaded with yeast and the final dough is allowed to ferment for 4-5 hours. Sidu is first browned over a slow fire with stuffing of fat and then it is steamed. Sidu is generally eaten with item like ghee, dal or lentil broth and also with mutton preparation.
Foods of Special Occasions :
You will find ankalos, a common festive food in Hmachal, which is made out of rice flour. In the dry valleys of Lahaul-Spiti, buckwheat leaves and mixed with rice flour to prepare cakes named “Aktori”, which is again a special dish of Himachal. Patande is another culinary delight of the state, especially available in the region of Sirmaur.
Dham, which is a traditional festive meal, is cooked exclusively by 'botis'. Botis are a particular sect in Brahmins who are chefs by from generations. Preparation of boti, an elaborate mid-day meal, starts from the night before. This intricately prepared food is served in Manali Cuisine. In Chamba region, the preparation of dham is served with rice, a madrah of rajmah cooked in yoghurt and moong dal. Dham is then followed by boor-ki-kari along with a dark lentil.
This exclusive food pf Himachal is also offered with deserts that comprise a sweet or sour sauce, which is made out of tamarind, jaggery. The other dessert is sweetened rice mixed with plenty of raisins and dry fruits.
You will also find some of the finest preparation of Japanese and Tibetian food in the state.
The assorted cuisines of Himachal Pradesh are sure to tantalize your taste buds during you next vacation.