The simple fact that you are examining this already elevates you to the posture of a meals lover curious adequate to go past the usual Konkani picture of miles of beaches thronged by visitors who are sunbathing and ingesting. You are completely ready to dig further and unravel the mystery driving the spicy and fragrant meals of the location.
Of course, considering the fact that we are conversing about the cuisine of a coastal place, coconut and seafood are apparent components in the preparation of any food even so, location and seasons also perform an essential part in the assortment of the rest of the components. Let’s get a appear at some of the frequent, and some not so frequent, components employed in Konkani meals.
A. Spices: Indian meals is incomplete with no an assortment of spices and the community cuisine uses them generously, offering the dishes a unique flavor.
· Black pepper: Piper Nigrum, or black pepper, is employed thoroughly in Indian cooking. In India, it is developed generally in South India. The fruits of the plant, recognised as peppercorns, are dried and employed as a spice each for their flavor and for their medicinal properties.
· Fenugreek: This plant, which bears the scientific identify of Trigonella foenum-graecum, has been cultivated considering the fact that ancient occasions: as considerably back again as 4000BC in Egypt. It is developed in semi-arid climates, generally in the northern and western states of India. This plant is employed in quite a few approaches in Indian cuisine: as an herb, a spice (each dried leaves and seeds), and as a vegetable in its fresh new form.
· Purple Chilies: Purple chilies or chili peppers are vegetation of the genus Capsicum. They are employed to make sizzling ‘n’ spicy Indian curries. The plant was released into Asia by Portuguese traders and considering the fact that Goa was, until eventually the latest earlier, a Portuguese colony, community Goan or Konkani cuisine uses this sizzling tasting spice closely. The varieties of chilies that are usually employed in Goan dishes consist of Byadgi, Bird’s Eye and some others.
· Asafoetida: This is dried latex acquired from the faucet root of a perennial herb called Ferula, which is frequently developed in Iran, Afghanistan, and India. The spice has a fetid, pungent odor, therefore the identify asafoetida. But inspite of this, when employed in very smaller portions in dishes like lentils, it offers a easy and distinctive flavor.
· Turmeric: Turmeric, or Curcuma longa, is acquired from an herbal plant belonging to the ginger family. These vegetation are indigenous to the southeast elements of India. While turmeric is employed mainly in rhizome powder form to impart a yellow coloration to meals, in Konkani dishes, turmeric leaves are employed to wrap and cook dinner unique sweet dishes.
· Mustard seed: Mustard seeds obtain point out in quite a few ancient texts, which includes the Bible and the stories of Gautama Buddha. Indian mustard, with the scientific identify of Brassica juncea, is developed generally in the northern states of India.
· Cumin: This spice is derived from the dried seed of Cuminum cyminum, an herbal plant from the parsley family. It is employed each in complete and floor form and is considered to have a range of medicinal and digestive properties.
· Teppal: Also recognised variously as Tirphal, Szechuan pepper or Zanthoxylum rhetsa, these are dried berries that develop in grape-like bunches on a tree which is developed generally in Maharashtra and Karnataka in India. These berries, minus the seeds, are employed mainly in the preparation of fish dishes in the Konkan location, as properly as from some vegetarian dishes.
· Coriander seeds and leaves: Coriander is also recognised as Chinese parsley or Cilantro and is indigenous to quite a few elements of the earth which includes southern Europe, north Africa, and southwestern Asia. The plant’s leaves, as properly as the dried seeds, are employed in cooking, especially for producing chutneys or as a spice.
· KhusKhus: This is the identify for poppy seeds that have been employed for 1000’s of a long time in meals preparation. Obtained from the opium poppy, the seeds are meant to have sedative powers.
· Cloves: These are flower buds of the evergreen clove tree which is developed generally in south Asia. This fragrant spice is employed in African, Asian and Middle Jap cuisine to impart flavor to curries, meat preparations, and sizzling beverages.
· Cinnamon: What is distinctive about this spice is that it is acquired from the interior bark of not just one, but a range of trees belonging to the genus Cinnamomum. Its flavor is this sort of that it is employed in each sweet and savory dishes. This spice has been considered in good shape to be eaten by gods and monarchs considering the fact that ancient occasions and hence has been hugely valued across the earth, even though it is indigenous to South Asian nations.
· Bay leaf or Tej Patta: This leaf is unique from the Cassia leaf/bay leaf recognised in the west. The Indian bay leaf is employed to impart flavor to dishes like lentils and unique sorts of khichris.
· Black and Environmentally friendly Cardamom: Each the black and green cardamom belong to the ginger family Zingiberaceae and is developed generally in Asia. They are unique not just in coloration, but also in measurement. Environmentally friendly cardamom is just one of the world’s most highly-priced spices, driving only saffron and vanilla, and, like these two, it is also employed each in sweet and savory preparations.
B. Herbs: Indian cooking tends to make use of a range of herbal vegetation to increase flavor to dishes or for the purpose of garnishing. Beneath are some of the most essential types:
· Environmentally friendly coriander: Coriander leaf, apart from remaining floor to make spicy chutneys and dips, is a need to for finishing the appear of Indian curries.
· Curry leaf: This is not to be perplexed with the European curry plant. This distinct leaf belongs to the sub-tropical Murraya koenigii tree and is employed quite usually in South Indian and Konkani cuisine.
· Mango Ginger: Called aamhaldi in community parlance, Curcuma amada, or mango ginger, belongs to ginger family Zingiberaceae and has a uncooked mango-like taste. It finds its use in Indian cooking in producing pickles, chutneys, sauces and salads.
· Ginger: The root of the flowering plant Zingiber officinale is just one of the most greatly employed components in Indian cooking. The roots have a unique and sizzling flavor and they are employed in curries, and added to sizzling beverages, and many others.
· Garlic: Allium sativum, better recognised as garlic, is a pungent smelling species of the onion genus. It has been employed in cooking for the earlier 7000 a long time and is a staple in quite a few elements of the earth, which includes Mediterranean, Asian, and African cuisine. From curries to stews and soups, and from chutneys and dips to pickles and flavored oil, garlic is employed in all sorts of cooking.
C. Souring Agents employed in Konkani Food stuff
· Bilimbi: This is the fruit of the Avarrhoa bilimbi or cucumber tree and is a near relative of carambola. It is a tropical tree and grows in gardens and backyards. It is employed usually in Goan cuisine for producing pickles or as a souring agent in soups and stews, or even curries.
· Carambola: The fruit of the Avarroha carambola tree, also recognised as star fruit, is employed in a related way as Bilimbi fruit that is to make pickles and chutneys or for ingesting uncooked with salt. Some Konkani recipes use jaggery to counter its very tangy taste.
· Tamarind: Tamarindus indica or the tamarind tree is a leguminous tree indigenous to tropical Africa but developed thoroughly in India. The extract of this pod – which preferences like bitter tasting fruit, is employed as a souring agent in quite a few Konkani recipes that variety from rice dishes, cooked vegetables, chutneys, lentils to seafood like crab.
· Environmentally friendly Mango: Even though dried and floor, green or unripe mango or amchoor powder is employed in Indian dishes to give them a tangy flavor the uncooked fruit itself is blended with coriander, chili and other spices to make mouthwatering sweet and bitter chutneys and aspect dishes that go properly with rice.
· Kokum: This is the fruit of Garcinia indica, a tropical plant belonging to the mangosteen family. Its outer protect is sunlight-dried to make aamsul or kokum. In the Konkan location, it is recognised as bhirand and is the most usually employed souring agent, imparting a marginally bitter taste to dishes along with a dim crimson coloration.
D. Vegetables, Fruit and Bouquets employed in Konkani Delicacies
· Coconut: The fruit of the coconut tree or Cocos nucifera, also called kalpavriksh in Konkani, is employed in quite a few unique approaches in Konkani cuisine. The fruit is available in abundance in the location and is employed grated, dried and grated, fried or as a paste, or in the form of coconut milk in quite a few recipes, some genuinely well known types remaining Sol Kadhi, Ambe Hashale, Vali Ambat, and many others.
· Gourds: Konkani cuisine has quite a few properly-recognised recipes that use different sorts of gourd, be it bitter gourd, bottle gourd or ash gourd, which are cooked in coconut curry with an assortment of spices that give them a sizzling and bitter flavor. Other sorts of gourds employed are snake gourd and ridge gourd.
· Malabar Cucumber: Identified as magge in Konkani, Malabar cucumber is a fleshy vegetable resembling a pumpkin. It is employed as an ingredient in preparing rasam and curries in Goa and Kerala.
· Chayote: Also recognised as christophine, this is a vegetable that is easily available calendar year spherical and can be chopped and cooked working with spices like mustard seeds, fenugreek, asafoetida, and grated coconut.
· Yam and Chinese Potato: Suran or yam and soppoor kook or Chinese potato are cooked with spicy coconut chutney and asafoetida and go properly with rice.
· Sweet potato: Kananga, as sweet potato is recognised as in Konkani, is employed to make phodis which can be each deep fried or pan fried.
· Banana: Banana is employed in Konkani dishes in a assortment of approaches ranging from the preparation of Banana halwa, a sweet dish, to shallow fried banana phodis coated with spice mixture, to banana puris that are eaten with coconut chutney and sambar. Other recipes consist of uncooked banana curry, banana modak (a sweet dish), and many others.
· Drumstick: Identified domestically as mashing, drumstick dishes are pretty well known in Goa offered that the tree is uncovered in the backyards of most homes. Drumstick is entire of iron and the tree’s flowers and leaves are also employed in Konkani cooking. Well known dishes consist of drumstick ros cooked in coconut curry, cutlets, drumstick greens rice, and many others.
· Colocasia: called pathrado in Konkani, stuffed colocasia leaves are a favourite community delicacy. Apart from that, it is employed to make fritters, cutlets, and aspect dishes like venti which uses the plant’s stems. The leaves are also employed to make curry, especially as Naivedyam on Janmashtami Working day.
· Breadfruit: This largish fruit belongs to the mulberry family. It is recognised as jeev kadge in Konkani and is employed to make fritters and a spicy dry dish to go with rice and lentils.
· Hog Plums: A person of the most frequent vegetables employed in Konkani cooking, hogplums or ambada are the fruits of a domestically developed tree. They are also employed in pickles or in other dishes as souring brokers.
· Tender Cashew Nuts: Cashew is a famed crop of the Konkan location, and, obviously, the location has some delectable cashew nut dishes as part of its cuisine. A number of well known types are Tender Cashew Nut curry or Bibbe Sagle, Bibbe Upkari, and many others.
· Jackfruit: Jackfruit trees are a frequent sight in the location and the fruits are employed to make phodi or fritters, chutney, aspect dishes, and payasam (a sweet dish).
· Environmentally friendly Aubergine: Gulla or eggplant is a part of some of the ideal Konkani dishes, like fritters, Stuffed Brinjal, Brinjal Sambhar, smoked Konkani brinjals, and many others.
· Greens: Apart from coriander, Konkani meals also uses brahmi leaves which are domestically recognised as ekpanna tamboli. They are employed to make curries and chutneys.
· Amaranthus: A further green leafy vegetable employed in Konkani cuisine is amaranthus which is produced into bhaji or upkari, the green leaves remaining called dhavi bhaji and crimson types tambdi bhaji.
· Malabar Spinach: Identified as valli in Konkani, Malabar spinach is employed to make spinach coconut curry or Vaali Ambat. This curry can be employed with prawns, shell fish, and many others.
· Tender Bamboo Shoots: These are a favourite with the locals and are each cooked as a aspect dish and pickled and preserved.
E. Lentils/Peas: Konkan is essentially a rice and fish ingesting location and lentils are a need to to go with rice. Apart from the frequent types like masoor (pink lentil), mung (green gram), toor (pigeon peas), chana dal (Bengal gram), urad dal (black gram), and rajma (kidney beans), some other lentils and peas employed in Konkani cuisine consist of:
· Cow Peas/Black Eyed Beans: Konkanis get ready bagde kodel or cow peas in coconut gravy with garlic seasoning. The dish, which is accompanied by rice, also uses Mangalore cucumber or potatoes.
· Horse Gram: The cold time sees Konkanis preparing kulith or horse gram quite usually. While the cooking h2o is employed as a saru or slender soup, the cooked gram is employed as kosambaris (salad) or stir fry. Apart from this, dosas and idlis are also produced working with floor rice, kulith, urad, and chana dal.
F. Fish and other Seafood: Seafood is an integral part of any coastal location and Konkan is no exception. Vison (Kingfish) is frequently cooked. The other varieties of fish that obtain a location in this cuisine consist of pomphret, tunal, mackerel, and shark. Shellfish like lobster, prawns, squid, crab and mussels are also easily available.
· Ladyfish: Ladyfish, also recognised as kane or nagli, is uncovered a a lot in the rivers of the location. This fish is viewed as clean and easily digestible and is cooked in coconut gravy. It is also eaten deep fried.
· Shark: Ambot Tik is a Goan delicacy which is produced with shark and served on unique instances. It is cooked in a sizzling and bitter curry and preferences better if eaten a day right after cooking!
Above the centuries, Konkani cuisine has been motivated not just by nearness to the sea and availability of components, but also its Hindu origins and centuries of Portuguese rule. The colonial rulers released a range of vegetables, fruits and spices to this location some of them, like potato and tomato, were being to begin with turned down by the Hindu natives, but, with the passage of time, they produced their way into the community dishes.