This week, we have a guest blogger Foodnommics taking us through her list of Nepalese and Himalayan delicacies. Unique to the region and iconic in their respective areas, these dishes are a definite must-eat whenever you find yourself in Nepal!
Momos are one of the most cherished dishes in Nepal. Prepared at every nook and corner, they’re ready to be served anytime.
These are bite sized juicy dumplings filled with minced meat, paneer, veggies, onions and many other spices. What makes it more special is the luscious achar (pickles), which differs from shop to shop.
Making momos is an enjoyable family affair as well. Family, friends and relatives often gather together to spend a joyful leisure time preparing momos together.
Samay Baji is an authentic traditional dish of the Newar community in Nepal. This dish has been passed down from many generations and is still much appreciated by the people. Unlike many other Newari dishes, there are no specific seasons for this dish to be served but is mostly served as a starter during festivals, religious activities and pujas. It is taken throughout the year because of its simplicity– it is easy to make and can be stored for a long time!
The number of items in a set can vary from place to place, but most of the items are found in every set. Among them are baji (beaten rice), bara (lentil patties), choila (marinated smoky meat), boiled fried eggs, bhatmas (black soybeans), and many more. They are served with homemade traditional wine named aila. The presentation and little bit of everything is what makes this set so attractive and irresistible.
Dal bhaat tarkari is a staple food of Nepalese people and is consumed daily by the majority here. It consists simply of steamed rice, legumes and vegetables. One of the famous and must-try is the Thakali set which consists of steamed rice, legumes, two vegetables and peppery achar reflecting the taste of the Himalayan region of Nepal.
This is a special dish where bone marrow is stuffed inside buffalo leaf tripe. A pocket is cut into the tripe, which is stuffed with bone marrow. The opening is gathered and tied with a piece of thread to close it, and these are then boiled and fried before serving. The texture is crispy on the outside and filled with all the gooeyness of bone marrow inside.
Sapu Mhicha is a specialty of the Newari cuisine of the Kathmandu Valley and is prepared during special occasions, but we can find it in many Newari eateries in Kathmandu.
These deep fried sweet Nepali rice doughnuts have a crispy exterior with reddish brown color. These are made mainly during festivals and can be paired with tea, pickles and veggies.
Perfectly seasoned meat which are skewered and roasted over natural wood fire resulting the juiciest, most tender and smoky pieces of heaven. These soft pieces of meat are to die for!
Jerry, Swari, Gwaramari
These sweet fried breads are usually eaten as breakfast and found in the mornings around streets of Kathmandu, Bhaktapur and Patan Durbar Square.
Yomari is another delicacy of the Newar community in Nepal. It is a steamed dumpling that consists of a wrapper made from rice flour and a sweet filling such as chaku (concentrated sugarcane juice, jaggery, ghee, and nuts). This delicacy plays a very important role in Newar society, and is a key part of the festival of Yomari Punhi. Yomaris can be found in almost all Newari eateries and can be enjoyed in many different forms such as chaku and khuwa (dried or thickened milk).
Considered the King of Yogurt, it originates from Bhaktapur and is an important component of all feasts and celebrations. Juju Dhau literally means “king of yogurt” in the Newari language. While cow’s milk is used to make regular yogurt, fresh buffalo milk is traditionally used for Juju Dhau, resulting in a richer taste and custard-like texture.