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Indian Cuisines

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Rajasthani cuisine

Rajasthani cooking was influenced by the war-like lifestyle of the Rajput inhabitants and the availability of ingredients in this arid region. Food that could last for several days and could be eaten without heating was preferred. Scarcity of water and fresh green vegetables have all had their effect on the cooking.

In the desert belt of Jaisalmer, Barmer and Bikaner, cooks use the minimum of water and prefer, instead, to use more milk, buttermilk and clarified butter. Dried lentils, beans from indigenous plants like sangri, ker etc. are used liberally. Gram flour is major ingredient here and is used to make some of the delicacies like khata, gatte ki sabji, pakodi, powdered lentils are used for mangodi, papad. Bajra and corn is used all over the state for preparations of Raabdi, khichdi, and rotis. Various chutneys are made from locally available spices like turmeric, coriander, mint and garlic.

Rajasthani cuisine is predominantly vegetarian and dazzling in its variety. The spice content is on the higher side, even by Indian standards. Rajasthanis also relish ghee which is an integral part of many of the preparations. The most famous dish would probably be dal-bati, which are spicy lentils with baked balls of wheat with lots of ghee. The variety of sweet dishes is also immense and sweets are relished as much as the spicy curries in Rajasthan.

Corn is a used in a lot of preparations both spicy and sweet. A popular sweet dish made of corn and milk is jhajariya. In fact guests are force fed with lot of affection, also termed manuhar or manvar. It is considered extremely rude to just lay the food on the table and expect guests to serve themselves.

Sweet Dishes

Sweet dishes are never referred to as 'dessert' in Rajasthan, because unlike desserts which are had after the meal, Rajasthani sweets are had before the meal, with the meal, and after the meal! And typically there is no rationing.

* Churma: is the most popular delicacy usually served with baatis and dal. It is coarsely ground wheat crushed and cooked with ghee and sugar. Traditionally it is made by mashing up wheat flour baatis or left over rotis in ghee and jaggery.

* Ghevar: is a honeycomb shaped delicacy made using plain flour and ghee. Ghevars are usually large in size approx. 200 mm. or 250 mm. (8" or 10") squares or rounds and are either sweetened with syrup or served topped with sweet raabdi or thickened milk. They are earmarked as a traditional dish for some special rituals and festivals. They are generally prepared in January for Makar Sankranti, in March-April for Gangaur and in July-August for the Teej festival.

* Besan Chakki: is a very popular sweet dish made of gram flour.
* Balusahi
* DilKhushaal
* Jhajariya
* Palang Torh

Here is a partial list of characteristically Rajasthani dishes:

* Daal-Baati
* Tarfini
* Raabdi
* Bail-Gatte
* Panchkoota
* Chaavadi
* Laapsi
* Nukhti
* Ghoogri
* Dhungari Chhaachh

Here is a partial list of characteristically Rajasthani curries:

* Kicha ki sabji
* Moranga ki sabji
* Guwar fali ki saag
* Beans ki sabji
* Gajar ki sabji
* Karela ki sabji
* Raabdi
* Vadi
* Keri ki sabji
* Khaddi
* Makki ki raab
* Makki ki saag
* Kikoda ki sabji
* Matar ki sabji
* Aloo matar ki sabji

Here is a partial list of Rajasthani meat dishes

* Mohan maans (meat cooked in milk)
* Laal maans (meat in red chillies curry)
* Safed maans (meat cooked in curd)
* Saanth ro achaar (pickled wild boar meat)
* Khad khargosh (wild hare cooked and roasted underground)

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