Indian Cuisine: It’s History and Evolution

In the 5000 years of Indian history, India has welcomed many settlers from around the world. Indian cuisine has evolved into different forms due to its homogeneous nature. India’s food has been divided according to different religions and regions. Different areas and regions in India have their own cooking recipes, spices and ingredients. With a population of over one billion, the food in India is as diverse as its people.

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Indian cooking has been mostly influenced by Hindu and Muslim style of cooking. Each of the settlers who migrated to India have given their own culinary methods to India. In India, two cultures of cooking are practised i.e. Hindu for vegetarian food and Muslim for cooking of meats. Mughlai food, Kormas(curry), nargis kaftas(meatballs), rogan josh and biryani are some of the favourite dishes that are prepared in a clay over tandoor. If we talk about South India, the cuisine is mostly prepared with rice and a thin soup called Rasam is added to it. Most South Indian recipes have coconut as their main ingredient. Some favourite Hindu dishes of South India include Idli(steamed rice cakes), Dosa(rice pancakes) and fermented rice.

The Indian cooking is largely influenced by Persians, Portuguese and Britishers. For example, the Britishers brought tea/chai into India. Most Indians love Chai.

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Indian cooking has four main regional styles i.e. East, West, North and South. North India was largely influenced by Moghuls. They ruled India for about three centuries and then were replaced by Britishers in 1800s. The Mughals gave us Saffron and rich gravies prepared from cream and pureed nuts. The Naan, which is a tandoori dish is not of the Indian origin. It came from Afghanistan where it is a staple food. Although, most of the people think that Naan is an Indian dish.

The South Indian food is totally opposite to that of North India. Their unique rice crepes and steamed rice cakes are a favourite among South Indians. Rice can be had in any meal and lunch usually has three dishes which can be served with rice.

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Hindus are divided into two categories i.e. meat eating and non-meat eating. In the West, states like Gujarat, Goa and Maharashtra have their unique food. In Gujarat, most of the population consists of Parsis, Hindu, Muslims and Jains. Each of them have their own style of cooking. The Parsis have very rich non-vegetarian diet that contains seafood and chicken while Jains are vegetarian. Most people in Gujarat are vegetarians and it’s vegetarian food is very famous.

The sea-food of Mumbai, Maharashtra is very famous. Most of the hotels and restaurants in coastal areas of Maharashtra serve seafood with a little of red chillies and coconut. Eastern states like, Bihar, Orissa, West Bengal and Jharkhand are very different from each other. Bengali cuisine is very delicate and contains fish and rice as its staple food. The Bengali cuisine is famous for a variety of dishes including mixed veg and milk based sweets.

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Orissa is famous for its squash blossoms which are dipped in paste prepared with rice, deep fried/turned to patties. Some other prominent foods of Orissa include seafood and fish. Bihar and Jharkhand are known for beans and vegetables. But they have Western influence with chicken, beef, goat and pork in their diet.

The Indian cuisine is largely influenced by Indian history. Each historical region have its own unique dishes with many ingredients. But there is a common thing about every region: a fondness for spicy snacks and sweet desserts. Besides being influenced by history, Indian cuisine is also influenced by religion, culture and traditions of India.

There is no other country which offers such a wide variety of exotic dishes with such a large variety of tastes for taste-buds.

Ice-Cream Recipes That You Can Make At Home

Ice cream is something that you can never grow old eating. It is absolutely OK that you still love your childhood cravings. Whenever you dig into sweet, sugary and refreshing ice cream, it brings back memories of summer. This summer, indulge in this delightful pleasure and find out yourself.

The history of Ice Cream is debatable. Maybe Italy, where Gelato is famous. America, where Ice-Cream is famous and India, where Kulfi is famous. According to legend, ice-cream was introduced in Italy by Marco Polo. Many passages from Bible have their origin in iced drinks that King Solomon enjoyed. In ancient Greece, Alexander used to love frozen drinks that were flavoured with honey and wine. The Romans started preparing ice-cream when ice was stacked and collected in ‘ice houses’.

It was only in 17th century that there was a change in how desserts are eaten and served. That is exactly when sorbets were invented. It is only during this time that frozen desserts came to be known. The ice-cream in its present form is said to be a Chinese invention. This ice-cream was prepared with buffalo or cow milk and camphor was added to it for flavour.

There’s flavour around the world that can suit any taste bud. When we were kids, we used to jump with joy whenever we saw an ice cream vendor. But if you could make that ice cream at home, we are sure that you would love it.

  • Chocolate Ice Cream

     

    Photo Courtesy: KitchMe

    This is one flavour that is loved by all. You won’t believe how easy it is to prepare.

  • Masala Chai Ice Cream

     

    Photo Courtesy: Tea•rrific! Ice Cream

    This season, try this fusion ice cream. Try this delicious ice-cream that is filled with plain flavor of masala tea.

  • Vegan Chocolate Ice Cream

     

    Photo Courtesy: HungryForever

    This is a dairy free version of chocolate ice cream. The recipe uses banana and almonds to give you creamy texture.

  • Mango Ice Cream

     

    Photo Courtesy: Milkmaid

    This delicious ice-cream is prepared with yummy mango pulp and milk. It is a delightful seasonal recipe. It is prepared with cream and fresh mangoes.

  • Strawberry Ice Cream

     

    Photo Courtesy: Cooking Worlds

    Strawberry ice cream is perfect for summer. It is particularly good for summers. This is one of the best homemade strawberry ice cream.

  • Vanilla Ice Cream

    Photo Courtesy: KitchMe

    This vanilla ice cream will surely make you very nostalgic. You can add toppings of your choice and create a great dessert.

  • Apricot Ice Cream

     

    Photo Courtesy: Serious Eats

    These creamy scoops of apricot ice cream are very delicious. You can sprinkle pralines on top to enjoy the delicious taste.

Mother’s Day & It’s Special Dishes

Mother’s Day is a day when you bring flowers, gifts and thanking mom for doing what she has done throughout all these years. But there was a time when it was a way for women to pursue peace and mourn fallen soldiers.

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The Mother’s Day that is celebrated in modern times is not something that is something new. These kind of celebrations go back to the ancient times of Romans and Greeks. During that time, the festivals were celebrated in honour of goddesses Cybele and Rhea. But, it is also true that these old celebrations have nothing to do with modern day’s Mother’s Day.

The origin of this day dates back to Civil War when a woman named Ann Reeves Jarvis started a club for mothers in West Virginia. The goal of this club was to lower infant mortality rate by teaching local women to take care of children, fight disease and improve sanitary conditions. By the end of Civil War, the organisation was transformed into a peace-focused movement called “Mother’s Friendship Day”, which involved bringing together Union and Confederate soldiers. Around the same time, women around the country organised their own Mother’s Day. In the 18 70’s, Juliet Calhoun Blakely, a temperance activist from Michigan started a local Mother’s Day celebration.

It was only during early 1900s that Mother’s Day was recognised nationally. Ann Reeves Jarvis daughter, Anna Jarvis wanted a holiday that honours her mother who died in 1905. In 1908, Jarvis had a financial backing for Mother’s Day celebration at a church of West Virginia. In 1912 she quit her job and found Mother’s Day International Association. Several towns and churches adopted Mother’s day as annual holiday and in 1914, President Woodrow Wilson declared it as official holiday. Since, then it has evolved into its present form of celebrations. In this blog post, we have collected a list of recipes for mother’s day:-

  • Ham And Cheese Pinwheels

     

    Photo Courtesy: Food Network

    This appetiser is very easy to prepare and is a crowd pleaser. I would always prefer this flaky, buttery crescent roll in place of sandwich bread.

  • Herbed Quiche With Blue Cheese

     

    Photo Courtesy: ABC News

    The quiche has a perfect balance of fresh herbs, cream and blue cheese. It is baked in a pastry shell. It is very delicious. It can be had alone or combined with salad and a glass of white wine.

  • Strawberry Shortcake Cheesecake

     

    Photo Courtesy: Recipe Girl

    This is a rich and indulgent cake that is perfect for a special occasion like Mother’s Day. The combination of strawberries, vanilla and cream is awesome.

  • Cannoli Cheesecake

     

    Photo Courtesy: Rovali’s Ristorante Italiano

    This Cannoli Cheesecake is studded with mini chocolate chips. It is topped with waffle cones and is perfect for Mother’s Day.

  • Ham and Cheese Croissant Sandwich

     

    Photo Courtesy: Sarah’s Cucina Bella

    Croissants can be used in place of cubed white bread in this traditional breakfast casserole. This dish goes well with soups, stews, brunch or breakfast.

  • Blueberry Cheesecake Bread Pudding

     

    Photo Courtesy: What Jew Wanna Eat

    Try this combination of bread pudding and cheesecake. This is a light and delicious dessert that is easy to prepare.