Classic Indian Foods Taking The World By Storm

This article is authored by Dr. Shweta U. Shah. A practicing homeopath, she follows a patient-centred perspective, emphasizing the benefits of natural remedies and herbs, homeopathy and whole food nutrition.

The Indian cuisine has swooped in on international menus and how! A melting pot of traditions and culture, India promises great gastronomic experiences as well! Indian ingredients, foods and dishes have managed to get a cherished spot on menus across the world. All our recipes have a distinct and unique blend of spices, condiments, herbs and other produce which mirrors geographical specialties, along with local preferences.

Let’s dig in to these finger-licking good dishes!

The Dal: Eat Breakfast Lentils, especially black gram, masoor and moong have been embraced internationally in a big way! Our dals are a huge favourite and their distinctive aroma and taste strike the right cord! A comforting and nutritious mix of lentils, slow-cooked with spices and tomato puree, and loaded with garlic, ginger, onions, garam masala and haldi; India offers a whole array of delicious and wholesome dals - Dal Makhani, Dal Fry, Dal Tadka and Dal Paalak and these have steadily made a strong place for themselves across the globe! They go well with the flat bread as well as steamed rice!

Lentils are a powerful dietary addition, given the immense health benefits they offer. Lentils protect the heart, promote gut health, and facilitate weight loss, as well as rev up your metabolism. They are a fantastic source of protein and fibre and keep you feeling fuller for longer thus keeping those hunger pangs at bay. They are the perfect food for those who’ve been diagnosed with high cholesterol levels and diabetes mellitus. What’s more, this super food is super versatile and can be easily incorporated into a whole bunch of recipes! No wonder our ghar ki dal is becoming an international favourite!

The Biryani: Another Indian favourite, the biryani has so many variants. Meat, cottage cheese and / or vegetables are marinated in curd and fragrant herbs and spices, blended with rice, and slow cooked in an elaborate fashion. While some keep it quintessentially Indian, a few restaurants do make certain modifications, especially with respect to the pungency. Whichever way it’s made, Biryani is amazing, and the world knows it!

Furthermore, rice has significant nutritional attributes – it provides metabolism-pepping up selenium, bone-strengthening manganese, and tummy-filling fibre. These qualities combined with the protein in the paneer and / or lean meat, along with the nutrient dense veggies make biryani a complete and wholesome meal. Serve along with an assortment of accompaniments – salad, raita, pickle, paapad, chutney and crisps!

The Halwa: Radish We’ve all grown up gorging on the classic cant-stop-eating gaajar ka halwa and sooji ka halwa! And intermittently, the moong dal and besan halwa too! However, India’s halwa repertoire comprises of scores of super delicious recipes which are sure to delight one and all! One of the easiest and healthiest ways to satisfy a sweet tooth, this dessert has been re-invented; and creative versions are seen across the globe! Served as sweet lentil pudding or carrot cake internationally, the halwa has been jazzed up in more ways than one! It is an out and out enticing dessert comprising of condensed milk, clarified butter, cardamom and slivered nuts, amalgamated well with either grains or lentils or vegetables. It is lip smacking good as well as great for the health conscious. Dal-based halwa is usually made out of moong dal or chana dal and is packed with all the goodness of lentils. Cooking the lentil paste well in ghee until aromatic is the key to making a fabulous halwa! Topped with slivered nuts and saffron, it’s the perfect end to a meal! An exotic version is halwa made with just almonds or cashews; these are incredibly rich, fudgy and cooked to perfection in milk. Vegetable-based desserts made from carrot, bottle gourd and ash gourd are decidedly popular and well-loved as well. The vegetables are nutrient powerhouses and integrated with milk, ghee and sugar, they make for a decadent, rich and gooey dessert!

Indian cuisine has most definitely crafted a lovely alcove for itself in the hearts of millions across the world and is unequivocally here to stay!


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