Each of India’s regions is distinct in its own way. The meals and spices change swiftly as you go around India, and you’ll be greeted with a new platter, each with its own extensive menu. As a result, the thali, which allows you to try a little bit of everything, is the ideal way to learn about a new region’s food. Aside from our differences, eating is what draws us all together. On a platter, a ‘Thali’ is the embodiment of ‘cultural inquiry.’ It’s a complete feast in and of itself!
1. Naga Thali
Naga cuisine is made up of a range of foods from the several tribes who live there. Rice is also a basic diet here, and they like to incorporate boiled vegetables in their meals. Here, a variety of chutneys are created, with the famous naga chilli chutney being particularly popular. Rice beer is a popular drink in this region, as are Zutho, dzutse, and ruhi. Galho is a popular naga khichidi that may be made in a variety of ways with both vegetables and meat. One of the khichidis they cook for supper is cabbage and palak galho.
2. Bhojpuri Thali
The Bhojpuri thali is a mostly vegetarian thali that is as diverse and amazing as the state of Bihar. Sattu (roasted Bengal gramme flour) is one of the primary ingredients, and the basic technique is bhoonja (light frying). Bharbhara (green gram fritters), dahi chura (yoghurt with rice flakes), sattu ka paratha, litti chokha (wheat and Bengal grams flour doughballs), kaale chane (Bengal gramme curry), gurma (raw mango chutney), rasiya (sweet rice), and balushahi are all part of a typical Bhojpuri (a sweet).
3. Meghalaya Thali
The Meghalaya Thali is among the few that places a strong emphasis on healthy eating. Boiled vegetables are popular among Meghalayans since they are regarded to be very healthful. Puklein is a wonderful food that can be found all around Meghalaya. Almost every meal has black sesame. The unique dal “daineiiong,” for example, would be incomplete without it.
4. Goan Thali
Sheet kodi nustea (fish curry rice) is a Goan specialty that will astound you with its combination of spices and rice. Boiled rice, kismur (a salad of fresh grated coconut and pan-fried dry prawns), kodi (fish curry), mackerel rawa fry, cabbage foogath (steamed cabbage vegetable), poi (butterfly shaped Goan bread), and the refreshing sol kadi are all part of a Goan meal (kokum-coconut milk drink).
5. Manipuri Thali
The Manipuri thali (Meitei) is simple and delicious, with fish, seasonal veggies, and sticky rice as the main ingredients. Eromba (fermented hidol fish and vegetables), sinju (cabbage and local greens salad), thanbou (lotus stems), ooti (peas curry), chareng (a fish curry), kangsoi (veg stew), chambut (boiled papaya), kangsoi (boiled dry fish), and, of Chak hao kheer, a stunning purple-hued black rice dessert lavishly sprinkled with cardamom powder, is the ideal way to cap the dinner.
6. Himachali Thali
The Himachali dham thali is a delectable dish mixed with a variety of indigenous herbs and spices. Patore (steamed and fried colocasia leaves), mhani (steamed raw mango mashed with jaggery and rock salt), madrah (yogurt-based chickpea gravy), mathri choware (lentil fritters in spinach curry), mash dal (black lentil), and khatta (sweet-sour sauce) are served with rice and khus sidoos in the dham (poppy seed and jaggery). If non-vegetarian dishes are served, khatta murgh (chicken with local spinach, malora) and chaa gosht are recommended (lamb in a yoghurt gravy). Dham is always followed by mittha, a sweet caramelised rice dessert with a generous amount of raisins and dry fruits.
7. Madhya Pradesh Thali
The cuisine of the ‘Heart of India’ differs slightly from that of its neighbouring states. Gujarati and Rajasthani influences can be found in Madhya Pradesh’s vegetarian food. Butte ki kees is a dish made entirely of maize and milk that is spiced up, boiled, and served hot. Dal bafla, also known as dal bati in Rajasthan, is similar to dal baati but is made differently, and hence has a different flavour. Another cuisine popular in Madhya Pradesh is poha. You might think of shikanji as regular lemon juice in water, but that’s not the shikanji you’ll find in MP—it’s thick creamy milk with a lot of nuts in it that tastes almost like almond milk of Tamil Nadu.
8. Kashmiri Thali
This thali, which has a royal appearance and is extremely tasty, is a meat lovers’ thali. Kashmiris adore meat, and several popular meals such as rogan josh, Gushtaba, and yakhni are meat-based. They also offer different types of bread for different seasons. Wazwan is a renowned Kashmiri multi-course supper. Dried fruits are used in practically every dish in Kashmiri cuisine, including the rice!
9. Chhattisgarh Thali
Rice and rice flour preparations, curd, and a variety of green vegetables make up a traditional Chhattisgarh lunch. Thalis in Chhattisgarhi are a long, drawn-out affair that is absolutely delightful. Fara, rice pakoras, dehati vada, and muthiya are just a few of the delicacies available. The Chattisgarhi Thali is notable for its bread selection, which includes angakar poori, paan roti, and chusela. Watch out for gulgulle, kusli, and sweet fara in sweets.
10. Kathiawadi Thali
The traditional Gujarati thali, which comes straight from Kathiawad, has a lot to offer. The majority of Gujarati meals have a little sweetness to them that sets them apart from other Indian cuisines. This thali includes khatta dhokla (Gujarati snack), gajar mirch sambhaar (pickled carrots and capsicum), sev tamatar nu shaak (sweet and spicy tomato sauce), rigna palak nu shaak (spinach in brinjal curry), dal dhokli (dhokla in lentils), Kathiawadi stuffed onion, methi thepla (flatbread), ka (buttermilk). This thali will come with a delectable aamras (mango pulp) dip if you’re lucky and it’s mango season.
11. Bengali Thali
The flavours of a delectable Bengali thali linger long after the meal is finished. From Begun Bhaja, Patol Bhaja, Shukto (a bittersweet medley of vegetables), Shaak, and Alu Bhaaja to Cholar Dal, Bhaat (rice), Maach Bhaja (fish fry), Maccher Kalia (fish curry), and Kosha Mangsho, the Bengali thali is a true feast for fish lovers (mutton in thick gravy). To round up the dinner, you’ll be served Payesh, a decadent rice pudding, and our beloved ‘Rosogullas.’
12. Maharashtrian Thali
The Maharashtrian thali brilliantly displays the state’s traditional and delectable mainstays. This mouthwatering thali includes rice, bhakri roti (millet flatbread), bharli vangi (stuffed brinjal), amti (spicy tangy tur lentil), pitla (thick chickpea flour curry), kothimbir wadi (coriander cutlet), chawli chi usal (black eyed beans curry), pandhra rassa (chicken in white gravy) (rice pudding).
13. Jharkhand Thali
The Jharkhand Thali is a complex dish. It sells indigenous foods such as dhuska and litti-chokha. A seasonal salad, dhania-lasoon chutney, dhuska and alu-chana stew, kurthi dal, urad dal dumplings cooked with tomato puree, lal saag, and marwa rotis made of rice and ragi flours, respectively, are generally included in a vegetarian thali. Mutton ka jhol and dehati chicken replace the yam and arbi leaf curries on the non-vegetarian menu. Desserts included dudiya and dudh pitha.
14. Punjabi Thali
Punjab is known for its food, and its thali is similar to its people in that it is rich, strong, and full of life. This popular thali features Amritsari aloo kulcha (stuffed flatbread) or naan, kadhi pakode (fritters in yoghurt gravy), pindi chole (hot chickpea curry), shahi paneer (rich cottage cheese gravy), jeera rice, dal makhni (black lentil), and sweet lassi, among other dishes. Butter chicken and Amritsari machchi are two of the most popular non-vegetarian dishes (deep fried fish).
15. Telangana Thali
Telangana split away from Andhra Pradesh in 2013, and the two states have the same eating traditions and customs. Their Thalis are almost identical! The spiritual significance of the Telangana Thali, however, distinguishes the two. The thali is bursting at the seams with the flavorful deliciousness of the state’s many culinary traditions. Vegetarian, non-vegetarian, and seafood thalis are the three options. “Traditional Indian food has no idea of desserts,” they say, “therefore we give sweets like gaval and other things for the festival.
16. Rajasthani Thali
A typical Rajasthani thali is a lavish display of gourmet dishes that will please everyone. Dal baati churma (lentil-wheat round breads), missi roti (lentil-wheat flatbreads), gatte ki sabzi (gram flour nuggets in gravy), panchmel dal (combination of 5 varieties of lentils), laal maas (fermented beef soup), bhuna kukda (slow-cooked chicken curry), gond ke laddu (flavoured buttermilk). Salads, papads, pickles, and chutneys are available to offer another degree of delectability to the meal.
17. Uttar Pradesh Thali
The Uttar Pradesh thali is hearty once more, with dal, veggies, dahi, and even desserts. Uttar Pradesh’s Awadhi and Mughlai cuisines are comparable to those of Kashmir and Punjab due to the Mughals’ common influence. Each of the state’s cities has its own distinct specialty. Lucknow is known for its royal biryanis, kebabs, and a variety of desserts. Agra is known for petha, Mathura for pedas, Banaras for paan, and Rampur for non-vegetarian and Pasanda meals, whereas Agra is known for petha, Mathura for pedas, Banaras for paan, and Rampur for non-vegetarian and Pasanda meals.
18. Tamil Thali
There is no such thing as a traditional Tamil thali because each district and community in the state has its own unique recipes, although the sappadu does feature several well-known mainstays. Poriyals (curries), kootu (mixed vegetables), mangai pachadi (mangoes with tur dal), pavakkai (stir-fried bitter gourd), kuzhambu (stews), thakkali rasam, chinna vengayam (small onion) sambar, thayir (curd rice), and the extremely wonderful pal payasam are among (rice pudding) them. When you combine that with the culinary characteristics of each area, you can see why this thali promises to be a gourmet journey!
19. Haryanvi Thali
The Haryanvi thali is easy to prepare and delicious! Large portions of handmade ghee, curd, and butter are served. It has a rustic and earthy feel to it. Kachri ki sabzi, Hara dhania cholia, mithey chawal, alsi ki pinni, malpuas, khichdi, and kachi lassi are some of the delicacies.
20. Sikkimese Thali
The Sikkimese thali is a foodie’s dream, bursting with flavours. Momos (steamed dumplings), Dalle chilli and tomato chutney, thukpa (noodle soup), gundruk (fermented leafy green vegetables), chhurpi ka achaar (yak cheese pickle), ningro curry (fiddle-head curry gravy), sel roti (doughnut-shaped bread), shimi ka achaar (fiddle-head curry gravy), sel roti (doughnut (string beans and sesame pickle).