Traveling invites us to live new experiences; not only when we visit new places but also when we meet people and discover traditions and types of weather, among many other things. But there’s something that DINKtravelers truly enjoy and it’s tasting new flavors.
Today we’ll travel to India to talk about the famous curry and naan. This Asian country’s cuisine is already very popular in England and the United States, but nowadays it’s also becoming a favorite in Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand and even Japan.
Main Ingredients of Indian Cuisine
Indian gastronomy is quite varied, but there are two basic elements in its recipes. The first one is the use of spices that infuse dishes with intense aromas, tastes and even color. In that sense, you’ll find alholva, the main ingredient in the preparation of curry. On the other hand, asa fétida and garam masala make food spicy. You’ll also find cinnamon, clove, cayenne, chili and cumin, all of them rich in nutrients. Apart from spices, the second main component of Indian gastronomy includes grains and vegetables. In fact, they have several delicious vegetarian dishes. Among the most frequently used grains and vegetables you’ll find lentils, eggplant, zucchini and cauliflower.
Ingredients in Indian Curry
It’s a mix of spices that you can find powdered, as a paste or as a sauce. Although there’s a wide variety of curry types of diverse colors and taste, depending on the Indian region where you try it, in general, the mixture includes ginger, chili, basil, coriander, celery, nutmeg, cardamom, onion, pepper and even clove and saffron. In most cases they’ll pour the sauce on pork meat, chicken or lamb, but you can also order a vegetarian version.
If you’ve been to Portugal you’re probably familiar with vindaloo (vinhadalhos, in Lusitanian cuisine), a dish with pork meat marinated in wine and garlic that was taken to northern India by the Portuguese. Indians adapted the recipe by adding hot pepper and abundant species. Nowadays it’s known as the king of curries because it’s one of the spiciest.
This wheat flour flat bread that’s shaped like a thick tortilla is baked in a cylindrical oven known as tandoor, and it’s a delicious complement for any Indian recipe. In your trip to this destination, ask the maître to allow you inside the restaurant’s kitchen and have fun observing how this bread is prepared.
Indian Food for Beginners
When you order at a restaurant, we suggest choosing 3 different varieties of curry and sharing them with your travel companions. In some venues you’ll have the chance to choose how spicy you want your food to be. Don’t get too adventurous ordering the spiciest version since you run the risk of suffering each mouthful.
Use a piece of naan to spoon out curry and don’t worry about etiquette, it’s an accepted practice that is part of enjoying the adventure of trying Indian gastronomy.