The northern state of Uttar Pradesh is a unique and incredibly diverse state of India. Home to some of the most iconic heritage and religious spots it has been attracting explorers and devotees of various religions from all over the world ever since centuries. This has managed to create a melting pot of different cultures, traditions, and beliefs among the residents of UP. It has also helped in establishing a remarkable food culture. When someone mentions this place then one thing that comes to mind is the delicious and authentic range of flavor-packed cuisines. Every region has their own specialty of food, desserts, and drinks that makes it a heaven for food heaven. If you are planning a food walk in Uttar Pradesh or are just visiting for fun with your family or loved ones then here are some food items and various cuisines which you must try out:
When in UP one cannot overlook the delectable Awadhi cuisines which is available almost everywhere and anywhere. This type of food style is a characteristic of the typical Nawabi cuisines. Every Awadhi food vegetarian or non-vegetarian you will taste that each bite is flavor-packed and filled with the goodness of wholesome spices and freshly prepared ingredients. This type of food is said to have been prepared for the Nawabs of UP i.e. the royal family for their elaborate feast. Awadhi food is not just about preparing the perfect royal gourmet meal but it also about intense quality checks that depend on the expertise and skills of the cooks or the Bawarchis and of course the masters of the spice known as Rakabdars.
Varanasi is famous for all the religious and spiritual reasons but did you know that the food in Varanasi is just as good? Being the home of a varied and age-old cultural and traditional backdrop the food has also developed over time. Now since the place caters to a huge range of domestic as well as foreign travelers the food is created in a certain way to cater to their needs. The food of Banares is simple, fulfilling ad extremely delicious. People go there on food walks and try some delectable street food like Jalebi, Lassi, Kachori with Sabzi and so much more. Restaurants here offer food like Chinese, Indian, Continental dishes among a range of others. It is a true haven for foodies from all over the world.
UP and Mughlai food go hand-in-hand. As the name suggests this particular type of food was developed during the Mughal Rule by the royal cooks. It shows influences of the Indo – Persian culture along with the central Asian and Iranian cuisines, which can be determined through the flavorful spices. The taste varies widely from being extremely spicy to mildly spiced food cuisines through spiced and whole spices that give the food not only a delicious taste but also an amazing fragrance. Some must have Mughlai dishes include Tunday Kebab, Haleem, Biryani, Galouti Kebab, Aloo Gosht, etc. this kind of food is famous for its open flame method of cooking and even cooking inside clay pots which packs the food with all the different types of flavors an is unlike any other method.
Kebabs of Uttar Pradesh
When it comes to delicate and flavor-packed kebabs, Uttar Pradesh is the place to be. This place will make you fall in love with these small pieces of delectable starters where every bite is extremely delicious and lip-smacking. Here are some kebabs without which your visit to UP remains incomplete – Kakori Kebab – it is a type of seekh kebab which is cooked on charcoal flame with the use of skewers. It is particularly found in the Awadh regions and consists of minced lamb and aromatic spices; Shami Kebab – one of the most famous type of kebabs found widely in UP it is a very flavor-packed patty made out of minced meat and delectable freshly prepared spices; Kakori Kebab – this is a type of Seekh kebab which was initially and originally introduced by the Mughals and later on it was modified in a way to make it more soft and delicious to eat. There are numerous other types of vegetarian kebabs as well making it true heaven for everyone.
Nihari is probably one of the most common food items found in abundance around here which is quite difficult to replicate anywhere else. The main ingredient which gives it taste is the usage of mustard oil while cooking and it is also a famous choice among the general population from different backgrounds. The name is derived from the word Nehar or Nehari and is one of the most popular breakfast delicacies in UP especially among the Muslim population. As a part of the process, the Nehari is braised overnight and stewed for 12 hours before cooking it and consuming it with delicious Kulchas. Along with being impeccable to taste this dish also keeps the body very warm during the cold winter months.
This is another one of the most popular cuisines whose roots can be traced to the Awadh regions of UP. It is a much-loved delicacy which is enjoyed by the whole population especially during some happy events or some festivals and occasions. The food’s inspiration is said t have been drawn from various sources like seasons, flora, fauna, color, etc. this Kofta refers to a boiled egg which is wrapped in minced meat and fried deeply then later on served in two halves that depicts eyes and adds some theatrics to the meal. A lot of effort and time goes into its creation but every bite of it is worth it.
Sweets of Uttar Pradesh
For travelers who have a sweet tooth, for them, the varied range of sweets offered in this state will prove to be a wonderful treat. The Pedas of Mathura/Vrindavan, Pethas of Agra, Shahi Tukde of Lucknow or Malaiyo of Varanasi, there are so many sweets to choose from that you will feel like you are in candy land. One must definitely try out the delectable Lassi which can be found anywhere else in UP. If you are in Lucknow then Nimish or Malai Makkhan is a must-have dessert. Apart from these above-mentioned desserts one can explore a variety of other sweet dishes including Jalebi which will be a truly fulfilling experience.