Now most of you, when you hear ‘North Indian Food’, the first few dishes that come to your mind would be rajma chawal, kadhai paneer, navratna korma, chole bhature, and so on. While these dishes are all extremely delicious, there are some more which may not strike at once. So, next time when you visit North India, take this list along.
1. Agra’s Bedmi Puri Sabji
One of the traditional breakfast recipes that originated from Agra and spread rapidly as one of the popular treats. Though cooked in homes and many restaurants as well, it’s best enjoyed in the Seth gali of Kinari Bazaar in Agra. Standing next to the road, savouring bedmi puri with sabji in leaf plates will take you to the golden days of the past.
2. Chandini Chowk’s Chaat
Now, I know, the word ‘chaat’ ignites powerful emotions and would make you want to run to the nearest plaza right away, but hear me out, Chandini Chowk is one of the densest hubs of cheap and best shopping in Delhi. To cater to hungry and exhausted tummies, every gali brings with itself an amazing array of chaat items – Bhelpuri, Sev puri, Dahi bhalle, Pakode, Aloo chaat, and the all time favorite – Pani puri!
3. Ferozabad’s Sonpapdi
Ferozabad’s golden sonpapdi is usually cube shaped and served as flakes. It has a rich and crispy texture, and is made from chickpea flour, gram flour, ghee, milk and sugar. Though its precise location of origin is not known, Ferozabad is famed to produce the best sonpapdi in the country.
4. Punjab’s Makke Di Roti, Sarso Ka Saag
Yes they are two separate dishes, but you’ll have to agree that they are incomplete without each other. It’s difficult to imagine eating the hot and buttery makke di roti with anything else other than sarso ka saag. The taste of sarso and makki (corn) synergizes to give an authentic Punjabi taste to the combo.
5. Punjab’s Lassi
Every Punjabi’s pride and joy and the most loved beverage of India is Lassi and nowhere else in the world you’ll find Lassi like in Punjab. Traditionally found in only 2 flavors (sweet and salted), modern Lassi is sort of experimental. It is loaded with various spices, fruits, honey, and the malai on top.It’s heaven on Earth. One lassi, patiala size please!
6. Meerut’s Gajak Rewari
Meerut is famous for its gajak, and even so more for its rewari – gajak balled, rolled, and hardened, with til added on top. These are small circular discs, and they taste amazing. Though its ingredients are similar to gajak, the difference in hardness and texture changes the taste dramatically.
7. Paranthewali Gali’s Paranthe (Delhi)
Now, you might have heard about this one, and it stems from Chandini Chowk too! The Paranthewali Gali, or so it’s known, is where one can find a large variety of the Indian flat bread, with basic everyday types like palak parantha and paneer parantha to the exquisite ones like kaju parantha and paranthas of various fruit combinations.
8. Benarasi Paan
“O khaike paan Benaras wala…” Even B-town agrees to the superiority of Benarasi pan. It is said that once you eat a Benarasi pan it ignites some powerful emotions in you, and you cannot eat any other pan the same way again, for the taste of Benaras lingers for days.
9. Lucknow’s Ghewar
Ghewar is the round, porous sweet, which comes in two varieties – the dry one and the malai one. While the malai ghewar is sweet, the dry ghewar has its own charm. The best thing though would be to just eat them all!
10. Awadhi Biryani
The Awadhi Biryani originates from the city of Lucknow, and therefore is also known as Lucknowi Biryani. It’s basically rice with chopped mixed vegetables, meats (like chicken or mutton), but it has a unique taste, which can be attributed to the many spices that are used (like mace flower, cardamoms, cinnamon, cloves, etc). It is an unparalleled experience to the aesthetics.
11. Kashmiri Dum Aaloo
A spicy, curd based gravy masking tasty baby potatoes, this dish is as exquisite as its place of origin itself. Unlike most of other dum aloo recipes, this one has a large batch of spices, most of which are aromatic and give a lovely warm flavor to the whole dish, blending entirely in the background of Kashmir.
12. Kashmiri Pulav
Unlike most of the pulavs, Kashmiri pulav is more on the sweeter side. It is served with a lot of garnishing, like fried onions, cashews, almonds, walnuts, and sweet fruits like apple, pineapple, and pomegranate. All these add to the exotic taste of the pulav thereby making it one of the tastiest rice dishes in the country.
13. Litti Chokha Of Bihar
Litti is ball shaped dough stuffed with sattu (roasted chickpea flour). It can be eaten with yoghurt, mashed potatoes, brinjal bharta, aloo bharta, or any other vegetable. Mostly eaten in the states of Bihar and Jharkhand, this recipe is popular all over the northern belt.
14. Khubi Ka Lai Of Bihar
Khubi ka lai is a desert specialty of the city of Barh. It’s made from Khobi seeds, mawa, and sugar. It is generally eaten in ball or cake shape. It is similar to the popular sweet ‘laddoo’, only it doesn’t contain solidified milk.
15. Dal Bati Churma Of Jaipur
Rajasthani food is incomplete without the mention of dal bati churma. Baatis are cooked dough in shape of balls, usually eaten with panch kutti dal and churma. One rule for eating dal baati is that you have to have lots of gheeThe baatis are cooked in ghee, dipped in ghee before being served with dal which has some more ghee added to it, followed by churma which too is fried in ghee! This explains that while the recipe is quite simple, it makes a very filling meal.
16. Mathura’s Pede
Peda is a sweet prepared from khoya (one of the many products of milk). It originated in the land of Krishna, and has become the proficiency of the sweet-makers of that area. In fact, Mathura ke pede are of superior quality and a must have for any visitors in and around Mathura.
17. Chamba Chukh Of Himanchal Pradesh
Chamba Chukh is many generations old and generally homemade traditional preparation made from locally grown chillies of the Chamba valley of Himanchal, which gave the name to the dish as well. It can be understood as a cooked chilli sauce with a chilli pepper taste. This preparation is highly regarded in its indigenous region. It’s slowly making its way into the traditional markets as well, but it can never get as good as the native.
18. Bhang Ki Chutney Of Uttarakhand
The chutney is made from the seeds of a plant more famous for its hallucinogen marijuana, a property which is thankfully limited to other parts of it. Bhang ki chutney is as rich in protein as it is in taste. It is generally relinquished with radishes and is a great get-along with any dish you’re served.
19. Laung Lata Of Benaras
Here comes another treat for the connoisseurs around. This time your taste buds will be provided for by khoya, cardamom, and chironji seeds. The Laung latas come served in golden packets of dough immersed in sugar syrup with stuffing of delicious khoya melting in your mouth with the spices in tow. This is one dish which is totally worth eating.
20. Agra’s Petha
Petha is the second most tourist attracting property in Agra after the Taj Mahal. People flock from far and near to eat this delicious sweet and take large chunks with them as souvenirs for their friends and family. It is available in myriad flavours like- anguri, dry, lal, kesar, pan, chocolate, and many more!