Department of Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology of the RWTH Aachen University

Indian Food

The Indian Cuisine is very different from the European one. Mainly you can find vegetarian but also non-vegetarian. It encompasses the regional cuisines of the Indian states. Also the Hindu and Muslim belief and culture have a big influence on the regional cousins. Meat has a minor role in India, it isn’t that important like in Germany.

There is no “Indian Cuisine” like there is no “European Cuisine”. The Indian Cuisine can be roughly divided into a northern Indian Cuisine and southern Cuisine. In the northern part there are more dishes of corn- and wheat flour like Naan and Roti. In the South you can find more rice (Pulao, Chawal). Also you can find Dal, a preparation of beans, peas or lentils.

Here are some dishes you should definitely taste when you visit India.

Starter

When you take a look on the menu you will find a lot of starters. Aloo Chaat is one of the starters and also street food. Aloo is the hindi word for potato and it is the main ingredient. It is made of fried potatoes, spices and chutneys. In restaurants it is mostly served as a warm potato salad. There are many different ways to prepare this dish so it never tastes the same when you go to different restaurants.

Aloo Chaat

Main dish

Biryani

Hyderabad is famous for Biryani, a rice-based dish with spices, vegetables or meat. In Hyderabad you can find Hyderabadi Biryani, it is made of basmati rice and goat meat. But you can also find it with chicken. Other indigents are yoghurt, onions, spices like chili and lemon. As a side dish you get onions with lemon wedges and salt (in a salt shaker). Put the lemon juice over the onions and then the salt and you will get a different taste of the onions. Other side dishes for the Biryani are Dahi Chutney (made out of Yogurt, green chilis, mint and onions) and Mirchi ka salan a curry made out of peanuts, chili, garlic, bay leaves and ginger.

Paneer

Paneer is an unaged non-melting farmer cheese and very common in India. It is a bit dryer than Ricotta and mostly unsalted.

Paneer Butter Masala: a popular dish from North India. The main indigents for the sauce are tomatoes, onions, butter, red chili powder and different masalas, fresh cream, garlic and ginger. You can eat it with tandoori Naan or Roti. It is a bright orange-colored creamy fare.

Palak Paneer: It is a popular vegetarian dish with consists of spinach and paneer. The thick curry sauce is based on spinach.

Chicken Tandoori

Chicken Tandoori is made out of roasted chicken. The chicken is marinated in yogurt with spices like pepper, red chili and masala. Tandoor is a cylindrical clay oven in which the chicken is roasted.

Chicken Saagwala

Chicken Saagwala are skinless chicken pieces in spinach. Other ingredients are cardamom, onions, garlic, ginger, chopped tomatoes and pepper.

Bread

Breads are generally flat breads made out of different types of flour. Popular breads are Naan, Roti and Puri.

Naan: is an oven-backed flatbread. It is leavened with yeast. Naan can be cooked in a Tandoor. Yogurt can be used to give it a greater thickness. Mostly you can get it as plain Naan or butter Naan. It can also be served stuffed with minced meat, nuts or lots of spices. You can also find garlic Naan in some places, it is very tasty but you should keep in mind that other people will smell the garlic too.

Puri: Puri is mostly served at breakfast and lunch time. It is made out of wheat flour or whole wheat flour. The dough is rolled out in a small circle and deep fried in oil. While it is fried it puffs up. It is finished when it is golden-brown. It is also street food snack.

Drinks

Lassi is a very popular creamy drink in India and can be find in nearly every restaurant and also sometimes on the street. It is made out of yogurt or curd and chilled water and some spices. Lassis are perfect cooler on hot days. There are two types of Lassi: salted Lassi and sweet Lassi. The salted Lassi is flavored with salt and other spices while sweet Lassi is blended with sugar or fruits like mango. You can also find Masala Lassi.

Mango Lassi is very popular. It is made out of yogurt, water and mango pulp. Sugar can also be added but it will become too sweet.

Masala Lassi is not that popular. The masala consists of green chili, coriander leaves, ginger, mint leaves and curry powder. All the ingredients are grind and mixed into the Lassi.

Yorck Adrian
Student of M.Sc. Georesources Management, RWTH Aachen University See all posts from Yorck Adrian
  1. i let the little csohoe between things to eat meatballs OR hot dog [she doesn’t need to know it’s a tofu hot dog]i let her dip things into small amounts of sauce [ketchup, japanese tonkastu or teriyaki] she’ll eat more meatball, or chicken, or even peas if she can do thisi save the fruit for last because she adores fruit. one more bite of XYZ and you can have as much fruit as you wanti don’t sweat it if she asks for the same thing [cheesy noodles] day after day after day. eventually she switches it up. but i should try shapes have NOT done that and there is never any forcing of food. that just doesn’t workand she ALWAYS puts her fork into dishes after she’s done and she skips to 16 after 14. almost everytime

  2. Eating in India is an adventure, from the East-meets-West artistry of tandoori-style foie gras to the tangy jumble of flavors in a street snack.

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