Over 10,000 years of history, India has been influenced mainly by Hindu and Muslim traditions when welcomed a multitude of settlers with different and a wide variety of belief traditions, systems. For us, in order to understand the evolution of Indian Cuisine, it is an impetus to realize the fact that India is a homogenous country after all. But still, the Persians, The English, and the Portuguese had also contributed a bit in certain parts of this country with their kitchen aspects at a certain point in history. Till now and as of today, a large and wide portion of the cultural fabric of Indian food is usually made up of a variety of regions and religions.
The first and foremost thing that comes into mind the moment we think of Indian Cuisine is definitely the spicy flavors of the biryani (layered rice and meat dish), spices in the gravy curry dishes, and the fresh vegetables. Sticking to the truth, it is the most obvious and characteristic thing always taking into consideration the vastness, enormity, and immensity of this country. Also the wide but different styles according to the numerous regions, make the Indian Cuisine so special and famous. Some people even have a thought that it's the smell of the Indian spices that got the British attracted to India and the Indian Cuisine.
India has a mixed and fused trend from outside with those of each corner which has given rise to the Indian Cuisine we are aware of today. There are numerous areas and parts within India that have their own unique cooking methods, local spices, and ingredients. This comes in with that combination of flavors, variety of textures, and different forms as the diversity of its food is as diverse as its culture and billions of people belonging to different regions.
SPICES OF INDIA AND THEIR MEDICINAL BENEFITS
The dishes in the Indian Cuisine, mostly all are seasoned with ground spices (combination to make dressing called masala) and dressed with masala to enhance the flavor and aroma of the dishes. The frequently and one of the most used spices in Indian Cuisine is Curry, where it is a blended mixture of spices such as coriander, cardamom, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, saffron and poppy seeds. We are all well known for the fact that this curry is often referred to as a dish even in the festive menu. The aromatic herbs and condiments complement each other in the dishes when used in combination also have a great and high medicinal value, calling them Ayurvedic for prolonging life.
One of the spices with the most medicinal value is the Black Pepper (also known as black gold in ancient India), widely used in the Indian Cuisine blended, mixed with other herbs, oils, and condiments helping to eliminate certain discomfort.
A lot of rice is used in Indian Cuisine along with legumes such as toor (chickpeas) or chana dal, moong (black and green lentils), urad dal. Chana is used as a flour called dhuli urad or dhuli moong and bread are usually made with a particular type of whole wheat flour.
Flatbreads like paratha, roti, pulka, chapati are cooked on “Tawa (grill)” and bread-like kulcha, naan, khakhra are cooked on “Tandoor” which is a cylindrical oven that is heated with charcoal. Other known bread-like bhatura and puri are fried in oil. The famous and delicious Punjabi tandoori chicken is also prepared in the tandoor.
MILK ( IT’S DERIVATIVES)
A highlight ingredient to mention in Indian Cuisine is the milk along with its derivatives such as yogurt (curd) and ghee (clarified butter). Few Indian curry dishes are mixed or seasoned with yogurt or some sugar or some masalas or spice mixes to get that extra delicious flavor.
FOOD OFFERINGS TO GOD
As a part of the ritual, Indians usually offer vegetarian food to Gods in the temples. For instance, lord Krishna from the Krishna Matha temple in Udupi is offered with Udupi-style vegetarian cooking food called the practice of naivedya (naivedyam). The chefs who prepare and cook these dishes for lord Krishna use a mixture of spices such as the popular garam masala which is also a tradition in the kitchen.
INDIANS LOVED DRINKS
One of the most popular and loved drinks in Indian Cuisine is definitely tea. On the other hand, usually, Southern part inhabitants prefer coffee over tea. In most of the street stalls, you can find the famous aromatic masala chai (tea), popularly known as spicy milk tea with sugar simmered together.
Other loved summer and thirst filling drinks are a kind of lemonade called Nimbu Pani, slush cream (battered curd or yogurt with sugar blended) called Lassi, Indian beer, and coconut milk eaten directly from the fruit.
Also, the national gin is of good quality and taste is quite famous. Undoubtedly, the national drink and also the popular drink in Indian Cuisine is the milk-sweetened tea called Lassi.
There is a lot of importance of desserts in Indian Cuisine and it is worth tough. The desserts often include a variety of fresh fruits with custard salad having an excellent delicacy. Also sweets such as rasgullas, jalebi, caramelized lentils are popular and quite frequently served with the cuisine. Ice creams such as Kulfi is also included in the cuisine for sure for its delicious taste.
INDIAN CUISINE PROMINENCE
Throughout the world, Indian Cuisine has its own popularity and is well prominent as it spread widely starting from England, British officials who even opened restaurants offering exotic dishes. The emigration of families from Bangladesh to London is known and this caused the opening of Indian restaurants in the areas of London and other countries making them famous for their restaurants serving Indian Cuisine.