“The secret of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside.”
– Mark Twain
A couple of elements constitute the culture of people in every corner of the globe. One of the most common element is food. Denizens of South America have corn as their staple food, with accompanying potato dishes and edible plant roots like yucca and local peppers used as seasoning. The Thai are masters of the balance of sweet, sour and salty flavours in their cuisine. The unique styles of food become identifiers of the people that created them.
In this episode of Northeast Ki Awaaz, RJ Catherine tells us all about the Khasi cuisine of Meghalaya, including a recipe from Wanda, a Khasi woman living in Bangalore.
The people of the Khasi Hills in northeast India are known for their simple styles and liberal use of black pepper! Fermented soya and fish are everyday household ingredients, while indigenous herbs such ‘Jamyrdoh’ and ‘Jaiiur’ fill up the spice shelves of a typical Khasi home.
The picture below shows a popular lunch-time meal for the everyday working-class men. Smaller side-dishes include yellow rice, fermented soya with slices of pan-seared pork and black sesame, pork sweetbread with onions, minced beef curry and green chilies.
The image below shows an example of another lunch meal along with afternoon sweets and goodies. The simple nature of the Khasi cuisine is highlighted by the use of boiled rice and mint chutney on the side. The beef curry was prepared using boiled cubes of beef and seasoned with black pepper and turmeric powder. Beef liver stew complimented the meal with its tender flavour and soft texture.
Dessert usually includes local pastries made with pounded rice and jaggery, and refined flour soaked in sugar syrup and deep fried.
We highly recommend that you treat your taste buds with the delicate flavors of the Khasi cuisine!
Written by Catherine Shadap.