Food Glorious Food ! One of the things one always remembers is the food.Food is very important in every culture in every part of the world.
During my two weeks in Kerala during the #KeralaBlogExpress I was in total Foodie heaven. I knew before going that I would be eating some pretty amazing food. But I was not prepared for the bursts of flavour that I experienced during my time in Kerala.
Every meal time included a variety of traditionally prepared dishes each with their own distinctive tastes and spices. It is no surprise that Kerala is world-renowned for their spices.Meals generally consisted of a variety of locally grown vegetarian dishes and fish ,chicken and beef. All food is cooked in coconut oil and often have additions of fresh coconut or coconut milk.
Although I come from an Indian background and have curried meals often all the dishes I ate never tasted like what I was used too. Did I enjoy the change ? Totally and that is clearly evident in all my Food pics on Instagram.
So here goes my list of 5 things you must eat/drink in Kerala :
1.Masala Dosa – Literally every morning I had this yummy dish for breakfast though it can be eaten for any meal. Each hotel has their own unique way of presenting this dish. Masala Dosa is a crepe like savoury pancake filled with a soft slighty spicy Potato filled served with a trio of sauces which include tomato , green ( made from coriander and mint) and coconut. This dish is filling but not heavy as a breakfast option best served with lots of Hot Masala Chai.
2) Street Coffee – After watching loads of Bollywood movies and Travel shows I knew I needed to try out proper authentic Street Masala Chai. There is such an art to making this on the streets. Normally I would be very sceptical about buying something to eat or drink from a street vendor but this was one thing I really needed to try. It was my fellow Travel Blogger Nidhi Thakur from India who enlightened me about the fact that Kerala was well-known for their famous street coffee so now more the reason to try it. As it is always so hot I opted to try this coffee early one morning on the streets of Thekkady which was slightly cooler. Another blogger buddy Raul from Mexico joined me for this coffee and a morning stroll. The coffee was so tasty ,creamy,aromatic and sweet. And on the top was a layer of bubbles. At 15rupess for two coffees it was so cheap. Coffee and tea stand can be found all over Kerala. And yes later on that day I found out that coffee beans are grown in Kerala too.
3) Karimeen Pollichatu – Right from the outset let me tell you that I am a fussy fish eater. Fish with bones are a no no to me. I prefer the skinless , boneless and fillet varieties. Shhh don’t tell my grandmother but I now love eating fish after my Kerala adventure. Meen Pollichatu is a fish dish which is roasted in a banana leaf. A fillet of fish is used combined with spices , tomato and tamarind. The banana leaves give off a distinct and lovely aroma that add to the taste of the fish.
4) Toddy – As a keen foodie watching food and travel shows are my secret addiction. Having watched Rick Stein’s Indian Adventure where he spent time in Kerala it was a certainty that I would drink some Toddy. Toddy is a local drink made from the Palm Tree. A sap is gathered by a term called Tapping. It does not have a long shelf life. Toddy is said to contain 6/8% alcohol. My first impressions of this drink which is drunk neat with no additions looks like coconut milk has a slight yeast flavour but I could not drink more than a shooter size glass. There are Toddy Shops where locals go to drink this brew.
5) Kerala Beef Fry – This dish does not look very attractive but boy oh boy does it pack a punch of flavours. The beef is marinated in a mix of spices and allowed to slow cook before slices of fresh coconut are added to the cooked meat. The coconut gives a great crunchy texture and earthy flavour to the spiced Beef. This dish is almost like a stir fry and can be also described as a dry curry.
Coming back home I brought back a number of spices from Kerala. In the next few weeks I hope to recreate some of these amazing dishes that I feasted on for two weeks during the #KeralaBlogExpress.
Have you eaten anything from somewhere in the world and found that it always reminds you of that place and memory ?
Be Inspired !