Jammu and Kashmir like other states of India have wide tempting cuisines to be served.
While Jammu and Kashmir are considered to be one the 300 km separates them which makes two states and both of these cuisines have distinguished cuisines to offer to their guests.
India is rich in culture and has a rich variety of food to satisfy the foodie’s heart. So, are you ready to taste kaladi kulcha and rista with me? Here’s a tour guide of what to eat when you are in J&k.
Traditional Jammu Cuisines:
- Kachaloo Chaat –
This spicy snack provides a tangy taste to your taste buds with the amalgamation of lemon, red chilly flakes, black-eyed beans, and tamarind in a perfectly balanced way. It is basically a spiced taro root. This chaat is quite popular among localites of Jammu.
- Kaladi Kulcha–
It is a traditional dish from the Udhampur district of Jammu. It is an exceptionally magnificent food item that you cannot miss. It is prepared from cow’s or goat’s milk and looks similar to mozzarella cheese. It is accompanied by flatbread commonly called kulchas and chutney which makes it a perfect breakfast. You won’t stop slurping!
- Rajma Chawal
It is a quite popular Dogri dish which is made in every household as Sunday lunch. It is prepared of red kidney along with other spices that add taste to its gravy and gives a tempting aroma. It is mainly served with rice and anardana (pomegranate seeds) chutney. It is undoubtedly everybody’s favorite and this food item is specially prepared for every big occasion.
- Khatta Meat
Khatta Meat is the specialty of Dogra cuisine. It is traditionally made of anardaana (pomegranate seeds) and is smoked with coal which adds a different flavor in the dish. As the name itself suggests, khatta means sour, and it is sour but in a delicious way. The tangy flavor is achieved either by anardana (pomegranate seeds) or amchur (dry mango) powder.
Patissa is a sweet item alternatively also known as son papri. It is prepared from a mixture of a gram and local flour together. The soft and smooth texture instantly dissolves in the mouth and satisfies the sweet tooth.
Traditional Kashmiri Cuisine:
- Dum Aloo
Alu dum, commonly known as dum aloo, is a classic Indian dish with Kashmiri roots. In a curry or masala sauce, potatoes, tomatoes, and onions are all cooked together in this dish. Dum aloo is regarded to be a difficult dish to produce since it requires precise boiling and frying, real spices, and a lot of time and patience.
A typical earthenware pot (handi) is used to cook dum aloo, and it is often shut until the food is ready to be served. Combining the words aloo (potatoes) with dum yields its name (steam, or warm breath).
An ancient and regal Indian cuisine from the Kashmir zone is known as rista. Meatballs are the primary ingredient in this dish, which is made up of a hot crimson gravy. The usual ingredients for the meatballs include mutton, cardamom powder, salt, and ginger powder.
Asafoetida, onions, saffron, red chili powder, fennel, cloves, cinnamon, mustard oil, and bay leaves are among the additional components that are briefly sautéed in a pan before being covered with water. The meatballs are added to the pan as the gravy is simmering, and everything is combined and simmered until the meatballs are thoroughly cooked.
A typical from the Kashmir region is called goshtaba. Mutton meatballs cooked in a hot yogurt gravy make up the curry. Mutton mince, mustard oil, fennel, cumin, fenugreek, cinnamon, cloves, bay leaves, black cardamom, cumin seeds, ghee, yogurt, and saffron are used to make it.
After being made, the stew is topped with saffron threads and fresh coriander before being served. Goshtaba is best enjoyed with rice or butter garlic naan on the side. The dish, which is frequently referred to as The Dish of Kings, is typically made during significant rituals.
- Tabak Maaz
Tabak maaz is typically, it’s prepared using a mixture of lamb ribs, oil or ghee, salt, cardamom, garlic, ginger, and cloves. The ribs are cut into pieces, boiled with garlic, and then the pot with the saved cooking water is brought to a boil.
The ginger, cloves, cardamom, salt, and turmeric are added to the saucepan with the ribs. The ribs are prepared in a frying pan with ghee or oil after the bones have been removed. To lock in the flavours, they are fried till browned. After being removed from the oil, tabak maaz is prepared for serving.
- Nadru Yakhini
Nadru yakhni is a traditional Indian curry originating from Jammu and Kashmir. Although there are many variations, the curry is usually made with a combination of lotus roots, ghee, cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, aniseed, ginger, yogurt, and salt.
The spices are cooked in ghee with ginger and aniseed. The mixture is seasoned with salt, and the half-cooked lotus roots are then added to the mixture and cooked until tender. In order to complete the dish, the yogurt is stirred in and the curry is simmered for a few more minutes over low heat.
It’s recommended to serve nadru yakhni with steamed rice and naan or similar Indian flatbreads.
Whenever you get a chance to visit Jammu and Kashmir make sure you try out these local traditional cuisines instead of Domino’s and Pizza Hut. Every place has its authentic cuisine that talks about that place through its tastes. I hope you enjoyed this mouth watery write up.
Writer Agrita Chhibber is from Jammu
Images from different sources
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