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Gourmet's Delight

With every daily event a celebration of life, Indian food is a heady multicourse meal for the gourmet with a taste for the exotic.

India offers a diverse range of foods for the traveler - to be eaten crisp and freshly cooked from the hearth, for therein lies the flavor.

The mainstay of lndia's food is wheat and rice. The former is kneaded into a dough and prepared in a wide range of rotis, parathas, naans and puris. The latter is boiled plain, fried, spiced or served as pulao and biryani in mouth- watering concoctions. These are eaten with a variety of meat, fish and vegetable dishes in exotic combinations with very surprising results. Barbecued, grilled, curried or fried meats, rich sea fare, lentil curries, curd preparations, salads, pickles, chutneys and rotis/rice are the basic foods of an Indian meal.

Ideally, if you are looking for rich fare, take your pick from a Mughlai or Kashmiri menu. In every region and in every city there is a refreshingly different meal to delight you your palate.

For desserts, there is a very wide range of milk sweets, syrup sweets, candies and sundaes. Have a chilled ras malai, kheer or phirni. Have some gulab jamun or jalebi hot from the frying pan. Try a wide range of halwa made of carrots, pulses or egg. And Bengal rasogollas are superb.

And to digest a heavy meal-chew a paan with its multi-action as a mouth refresher, digestive and lip salve.

For snacks and lighter meals you could try chhola-bhatura, samosa, fritters, dhokla, dosa, vada or bhelpuri. These mouth-watering dishes are sold throughout India.

Indians drink tea and coffee round the year, even in the summer heat. But if you want something cooling, have a lassi (buttermilk) or a nimbu pani (freshly prepared lemonade) or any of a range of fruit juices: mango, orange, apple, sugarcane.




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