Himachali Food & Community Feast Customs
HIMACHALI VEGETARIAN DISHES
Chana Madrah – Madrah is known to be a kadhi-like dish. It is set up with chickpea flour and yogurt and is one of the most common dishes in the hills. It is set up with a unique sort of chana known as “Kabuli Chana”. Or you may utilize white chickpeas. It is cooked in a curry with a heap of pahadi flavors, onions, garlic, and ginger.
Patande – Patande is somewhat like pancakes. It is from the Sirmaur area of of Himachal Pradesh. It is made with a batter consisting of wheat flour, sugar, and milk.
Akotri – Known to be a delicacy from the hilly region of Northern India, Akotri is a famous dish. It is known to be a sort of cake which is made by using buckwheat. It is usually made for events and celebrations.
Bhey- Bhey is a exceptional dish, which is made using the stems of the lotus blossom. It is a lovely dish, which requires careful cooking. The stems are first cut in thin slices and washed. It is then bubbled and pan-seared with garlic, onions, ginger-garlic glue, and gram flour. Some gram flour is added for extra flavours.
Aloo Palda – This is a dish for potato lovers. The potatoes are cooked in a curd based tangy gravy and eaten with rice or roti.
Siddu – Siddu a signature “Himachali dish” and popular in most of state like Mandi, Kullu, Manali, Rohru and Shimla. It is a sort of bread produced using wheat flour. To make siddu you have to make a blend of wheat and yeast. After kneading wheat with yeast, permit the batter to raise for four to five hours or hold up until it rises well. Then its stuffed with minced vegetables or meat and served with ghee and chutney.
HIMACHALI MEAT DISHES
Kullu Trout – This is a specialty from the Kullu, Himachal Pradesh. The exceptionally flavoursome dish is made by panfrying trout fish with a limited amount of condiments and spice. This helps to bring the original taste of the fish.
Chha Gosht – This is a lamb meat dish in a blend of coriander powder, cardamom, red chilli powder and ginger garlic paste. Asafetida and cove leaf are lightly fried in oil and afterward added for strong flavour.
Pahadi Chicken – The pieces of Chicken which is sautéed and cooked in an assortment of flavours. It’s is cooked with coriander, garlic, and ginger alongside mint leaves and other ingredients for flavours.
Chamba Style Fried Fish – This dish is cooked with fish in different kinds of spices of the Chamba area of the state. The fish is first marinated with various spices and afterward chickpea flour is added. The fish is then seared till it is crispy.
Luchi Poti – It is a dish in which lamb intestine is the main ingredient. There are two kinds of flour which are used to make this dish, one is millet and another one is wheat. They are then blended in with an assortment of spices and condiments and ground to a paste-like consistency. This paste is then stuffed in the intestines and then steamed. Typically a lamb soup is served on the side.
Babru – This is a pahadi variety of the normal Kachori. Rather than the dal filling, it utilizes a dark gram filling which is first made into a paste and afterward stuffed into the mixture. These are then moved with a moving pin, and pan-fried in oil.
Guchchi Mushroom – They are called ‘Guchchi’ in the Himalayan locale and are liked for their spongy, honeycomb surface and unique flavour. Guchchi mushrooms typically develop in bunches on logs of rotting wood or rotting leaves and even in humus soil. They may or not develop in a similar fashion to the following season and they are famously unusual as they may show up anyplace.
Dhaam : Community Feasts in Himachal Pradesh
Dhaam – Dhaam is a community feast prepared and served on each happy occasion or festival in the family. People likewise serve Dhaam on the greater part of the celebrations or auspicious dates. This is common in Dogra community in Himachal and Jammu.
According to legends, Jaistambh, the then-King of Himachal Pradesh in 7th century, loved the Kashmiri Wazwan so much that he requested his cooks to set up a comparable dinner without utilizing meat. Even though Kashmir was completely populated by Hindus and Buddhists at the time, meat was a big part of the cuisine there. Subsequently another menu was developed in Himachali cooking, in the end known as dham. The assorted variety in the way of life and customs in Himachal Pradesh is reflected in the conventional dham of every district, which gives them a unique spot in the Himachali food. Many dhams don’t use onion, garlic and any other vegetable and exclusively us grains, dairy and lentils for all their dishes.
Batloi/ Charoti – Charoti/Batloi are brass or copper vessels utilized for cooking food in dhaam.
Boti – A person (Brahmin Cook) who prepares the Dhaam.
Pattal – A plate made of dried leaves of tour/sal or banyan trees.
Char/ Tiun – It is a trench dug in earth and filled with firewood for cooking.
Panihara – Panihara, an individual lresponsible for filling water, cleaning, and washing utensils. His obligation is to clean the seating area after each bunch completes the process of sharing food.
Rasailu – Kitchen in Himachal Pradesh is called ‘Rasailu’.
Dhams in Himachal Pradesh
1. Mandyali Dhaam – The meticulousness of taste, the sizzle of flavors, and the skill of cooking is the core of Mandyali dhaam. Sage Sushrut in “Sushruta Samhita” clarified the best possible grouping of having meals and referenced every one of the six rasas in the eating regimen. He clarified that one should begin the food with a sweet, trailed by sharp and salty food, and at long last harsh and astringent food for a sound body and brain. This grouping can be found in the Mandyali dhaam wherein, one finds that it follows appropriate eating routine depicted in Ayurveda.
2. Kaangri Dhaam – Dishes in a Kangri dhaam are generally are an ideal mix of oils and flavors important for the body. The menu is served strictly in the Vedic way, which helps in better digestion
3. Bilaspuri Dhaam – In Bilaspuri dhaam, moong dal is cooked in ghee, urad dal and toor dal cooked in the mouth-watering white mustard paste, and popular sebu badi. Adding to the flavorful menu is khatta, which is one of a kind as it comprises pumpkin, chickpeas, tamarind, and jaggery followed by the “kadi pakoda” . At long last, a sweet dish “bundi ki daal” is served.
4.Chambayali Dhaam – Here, the dhaam begins with the serving of rice and auriyali moong dal and rajma madrah, which is served by the head boti. At that point a sweet dish, typically “meethe bhaat”, is served followed by “teliya maah ki daal”, and kadhi, and at long last “khatta” is served.
5. Hamirpur Dhaam – In Hamirpur area, raw mustard oil is added to the dishes during the cooking procedure, which helps in giving a sharp flavour to the dishes. Onions and tomatoes are added to the dishes in modest quantities. Dried apricots are utilized for getting ready khattas, ghee, tomatoes, and curd are used for planning conventional madra in Hamirpur district.
6. Kinnauri Dhaam– In Kinnauri dhaam, rice is served alongside puri, halwa, and occasional vegetables. There is likewise arrangement of alcohol and goat meat for the visitors.
6. Dhaam in Lahaul Spiti – In Lahaul and Spiti region, rice is served alongside chana dal (Bengal gram), rajma (kidney beans), chole (chick pea), gobhi aloo ki sabzi (cauliflower and potato vegetable), and goat/sheep meat.