If you asked an Indian where one can find the essence of Indian cuisine, he would point at his heart. Such is the heart-warming effect of Indian food that it not only satiates our hunger but satisfies our heart with its wholesome taste. If you went one step further and asked where someone can find the best of Indian food, he would take you home and feed you plate of homecooked Indian food. Such is the magic Indian mothers possess in their hands, a magic they add by the ladle every day in the food cooked with love everyday at home.
When we talk about Indian cuisine, we do not talk about a few signature recipes that the world loves. We are talking about the different food recipes that are eaten with happiness even today in different regions of India. Indian cuisine is therefore not one single cuisine but a festive plate of different regional cuisines that have found their influences in the national cuisine. Whether it’s the sweetness of Bengal, found in its Sondesh or Mishti Doi; the simplicity of Maharashtra with its filling Kanda Poha ; the richness of Punjab, felt in the fragrance of a well-cooked Paneer Butter Masala or the tanginess of Kerala, left lingering in its tart fish pickle, food in India has many faces and is known by many names, just like anything else in our vast and diverse country. So, what do you exactly mean by Indian cuisine? And with such variety of sub cuisines under the Indian cuisine portfolio, what dish would really represent India in the world aptly? If you asked the foreigners, they would go for a good naan and chicken tikka masala. And if you asked the mothers of India, they would feed you at least one signature dish from their kitchen.
Still, there are a few Indian recipes that every Indian craves for and has eaten or is planning to eat once in his life. These recipes, that can change the course of a meal are as follows-
- Butter Chicken– A hearty dish of chicken cooked in rich butter; Butter chicken has a heart-warming tale of friends reuniting after the partition of 1947 behind it. After the political upheaval of 1947, when three friends reunited in Delhi after fleeing from the unrest in another region of erstwhile India, Butter Chicken or Murg Makhani was made in their collaborative restaurant- Moti Mahal. Neither the friends nor the people of Delhi knew that Butter chicken will one day become a beloved dish in India and Moti Mahal will be a renowned restaurant because of it. If Indian Cuisine is a temple, Butter chicken will be its temple bell, calling out to foodies around the world, Today, food enthusiasts and chefs from around the world come to India to taste the butter chicken at Moti Mahal and take the taste back to recreate it in their kitchens. The rich dish can be recreated at home if you have your spice game strong and know how to season and marinade chicken well. Be generous with the butter and enjoy this well-cooked dish with soft naan or Rumali roti cooked with Globe Kitchenware.
- Tandoori Chicken- Cooked in the traditional clay oven or Tandoor, Tandoori Chicken is loved by the Indians for its smoky barbecue flavour. If you looked at the dish closely, it is India’s answer to America’s summer barbecue. Tandoori Chicken is so popular that no Indian party and get together is incomplete without a smoking hot, fresh out of tandoor Tandoori Chicken. Some believe that the origins of the Tandoor and the Tandoori Chicken can be traced back to the kitchens of India’s oldest civilization, Harappa. When archaeologists explored the remains of the Harappan civilization at the excavation site, ovens similar to the modern-day tandoor have were found which indicated the 3000-year-old story of origin linked to the creation of Tandoori Chicken. Despite all this, the founder of Moti Mahal is credited with the invention of the modern-day Tandoori chicken, which is slow roasted in the Tandoor after a thorough marination in a mixture of yogurt and aromatic spices, rendering a beautiful red colour and smoky flavour to the dish. Nowadays it is possible to recreate the recipe of Tandoori Chicken but it is a time taking process as the chicken is left to marinate for 6 hours and then slow cooked in the oven or grill.
- Chicken Vindaloo curry– A spicy chicken curry from the lesser known Goa cuisine, Chicken Vindaloo has a distinct Portuguese influence as the dish was introduced by Portuguese traders who landed in Goa in the 15th century. Originally cooked in wine and vinegar, the dish was modified to a no wine version as there was no wine in India back then. Instead, palm wine and a lot of Indian spices like cinnamon, black pepper and tamarind was used to season the meat. The Vindaloo is originally a dish cooked with pork, but since chicken is the more widely eaten food in India, the Chicken Vindaloo curry is more famous. The spices used need to be roasted well and then made into a fiery paste, so make sure that you cook the paste well with a Globe Kitchenware Kadhai.
- Rogan Josh– The Kashmiri equivalent of Rajasthan’s Lal Maas, the king of Kashmiri cuisine Rogan Josh literally translates to red lamb. This aromatic lamb stew from the mountains has a fiery kick to it but also has the balancing richness of cream added to it. Red lamb curry with an intense heat and red colour, Rogan Josh is eaten by the Kashmiri people during times of extreme cold to increase body heat and survive the harsh winters. The dish is believed to have Mughal origins and Persian influences. The slow-cooked stew of lamb is packed with spices which give it a unique taste and make it a very popular traditional dish eaten in the north India. Making Rogan Josh at home might be tiring but the fruit of your labour will taste heavenly with a bowl of well-cooked Basmati Rice in Globe Kitchenware Handi.
- Palak Paneer- No recipe book or Indian kitchen is complete without a good recipe of Paneer. Palak Paneer, soft paneer pieces cooked in a wholesome, nutritious sauce of spinach is the healthiest of them all. Though paneer is not an Indian ingredient, you will find that paneer is extensively used in the restaurants and kitchens of India. It is said that Palak paneer had an earlier version called Saag paneer which was paneer cooked in a sauce of pureed greens harvested from the fields of Punjab. Slowly, it developed into palak paneer that was available widely in Punjab and outside the state. A smooth sauce of paneer with soft cubes of paneer and a light seasoning of spices is easy to cook with Globe Kitchenware kadhai and deep pans.
The above recipes are some of the most popular recipes of Indian cuisine that should be recreated at home and enjoyed with family over a hearty meal.