Kashmir ,the Heritage land in northern region of India, Known as Heaven, a region Possessed by natural beauty and the inheritance which nature has Given to it.An assortment of distinct yet mesmerizing Traditions and culture of kashmiri Pandit’s & Muslim’s which are quite divergent but still tied in an Ethnic Knot.Feel the environment and you will fall in love with this place . The diversity of people can be seen also through the Food of Kashmir . kashmiri food mostly include slow cooked foods which has a flavor burst of balanced spices, use of onions is very minimum in the dishes resulting in thin gravies which are often thickened by yogurt. A major part of kashmiri Dishes includes Mutton of around 30 types, halal chicken is found where chicken is cut and let bleed. Rice dishes including Biriyani and Pulao are prominent where Wazwan is their most famous delicacy, made with stacks of rice including mutton, barbecued ribs and seekh kebab served with yogurt and dips. It is treated with great respect and eating it is done with a ritual where group sits together around and starts it by washing their hands.
During my recent visit to Kashmir I found meat being served at every single food place.There were hardly 4-5 Pure veg restaurants including The Krishna Dhaba which was serving a good veggie gourmet. Exclusive of Meat the only veg food that You will find most often is Halwa with Parantha. It is available at every food stall whether it is roadside vendor or a big refreshment kiosk.
Kashmiri Halwa– It is basically a Dense Sweet dish with a crumbly and coarse texture, made form Semolina and Milk,Ghee as Primary Ingredients, its taste would always enlighten your taste-buds with the warm Hospitality and gastronomy of Kashmir. It is Garnished with Grated Coconut and Nuts and served, an all time companion of Parantha .It is conventional Sweet dish of localPeople and households as it always a gourmet with less of efforts. It is more sweeter than other halwas and the aroma, color and flavor of local Kashmir saffron added is a cherry on the cake. i went around the Hazratbal Mosque and found a plenty of vendors selling this whose face would tell the precision they had in this art.
Kashmiri Pqrantha– Just having a Halwa is being bias to the vendor selling it, having this Parantha,which is a Flat Bread made From whole purpose flour. Coupling it with halwa is the best way to have a all time gastronomic experience, blending yourself to this paramount food culture of the region.
This Parantha is High demand in Kashmir for Breakfast. Making this is not everybody’s Cup of Tea, It is an art which demand a lot of skills and practice for precision and this distinct taste and texture. The process looks very simple where they make a dough from flour, salt and milk, taking a large loaf in 1 batch and Flattening it in a circle of 1-1.5 m in Diameter. It is so Big that it needs intense care and command to Flatten it. After this skill test it is deep fried it in hot oil, giving it a crispy brown texture. if i would be given this job, then surely it is going to be a challenging time i guess. When it comes out of Hot Sizzling oil its aroma and Texture will make you to try it. It is so huge and heavy that it is Sold by weighing per Kilogram.
The twosome of Halwa and Parantha will give you an amazing Food sensation which will directly connect you to the food Heritage of Kashmir. So for your next visit to Kashmir do note down to taste this duo gourmet on your Task list.
Picture Credits: Rishab Beri
Location Courtesy: Hazratbal, Srinagar,