Gujarati Cuisine





Gujarati Cuisine comes from the western coastal state of Gujarat. Gujarati Cuisine is mostly a vegetarian cuisine despite the fact that it has a very big coastal belt which has abundant resources for sea food. This is mainly due to high influence of Vaishnavism and Jainism in the state. However a few communities include meat, chicken and seafood in their cuisine. Gujarati Cuisine has many sub divisions according to the regional divisions like North Gujarat, Central Gujarat, South Gujarat, Kutch (Kachchh) and Kathiawad areas. Gujarati Cuisine is famous for its guided combination of spices in their food which is considered to facilitate digestion of the food easily.

A few popular dishes in Gujarati Cuisine are:

  • rotlo refers to various roti’s made from various flours
  • shaak refers to the curry’s made from various vegetables
  • bhakri refers to a kind of roti which is much thicker and crispy
  • vedmi / puran poli refers to whole wheat roti made with sweet chickpea dal
  • thepla / dhebla refers to a very thin pan fried roti made with mixture of flours, spices and shredded vegetables
  • poodla refers to a dessert (sweet) dish which is made from mixture of flours and then pan fried
  • biranj refers to a rice dish where rice is steamed and flavored with dry fruits, saffron and sugar
  • doodhpak refers to rice pudding dish made by boiling rice & milk, sugar, flavored with cardamom, saffron and many dry fruits
  • khichdi refers to a porridge dish made with rice and dal, consumed with ghee, kadhi or chaas
  • khichu refers to a rich dish made with kneaded rice flour, by heating it with water, salt, cumin and chillies
  • kadhi refers to a curry dish made with buttermilk which is boiled with gram flour. It is made sweet or salty in flavor as per choice
  • farsan refers to any side dish served with the main course of a meal
  • undhiyu refers to vegetable casserole kind of dish which is traditionally cooked upside down in earthen pots and fired from top
  • dabeli refers to bread dish where a pav (bread) is stuffed with sweet and spicy stuffing made of potato, chillies and chutneys
  • dhokla refers to a steamed cake kind of dish made mostly with rice flour and also many variety of flours
  • khaman refers to a steamed cake made with gram flour and garnished with green chillies, mustard seeds and coriander leaves
  • handvo refers to a steamed cake dish made of rice flour, vegetables, beans, yogurt and bottle gourd
  • khandvi refers to a rolls of snack dish made by gram flour, yogurt, garnished with oil, coriander leaves, mustard seeds and coconut
  • muthia refers to a steamed dumpling made of gram flour, fenugreek, salt, turmeric and chillies
  • fafda refers to a crunchy snack dish made of gram flour, salt, carom seeds and oil
  • khakra refers to a very thin roti kind of snack dish which is crispy made with flour and oil by hand roasting on a pan
  • adadiya refers to a sweet dish made of black gram, ghee, dry fruits, milk, sugar and cooking gum, and is eaten mostly in winters
  • shrikhand refers to a sweet dish made of strained yogurt, sugar, saffron and cardamom and some times flavors of fruits
  • shedki refers to a liquid version of shrikhand served in an earthen pot and garnished with rose petals
  • chaas refers to buttermilk which is made with curd, mint leaves powder, cumin powder and salt
  • chhunda refers to a sweet and sour mango pickle famous mostly in Kathiawad region

This Gujarati Cuisine offers a variety of vegetarian dishes including different kinds of pickles, farsan’s, chutneys and foods that are always high on nutrition quotient. In Gujarati Cuisine, one can see that there is excessive usage of sugar, tomatoes and lemon. The main reason behind it is that Gujarat is a coastal state and weather here remains hot and dry throughout the year.  All these ingredients in food helps to keep the body hydrated. Food of Gujarati Cuisine is rich in proteins as there is a liberal usage of lentils, cereals, vegetables with suitable seasoning.

Gujarati Cuisine offers food dishes which are mostly either sweet, salty or spicy depending upon the region of its origin.  There has been a practice to add a little sugar / jaggery to the dishes to neutralize the flavors of vegetables, spices and also the salinity levels of water in many areas. However the street food makes a complete package for the sweet, spice and sour flavors of Gujarat Cuisine. In the city of Ahmedabad, a famous city square know as Manek Chowk is very famous for night street food. Manek street in morning is a vegetable market, during day time it is a bullion market and then after 10 pm in the night it is a night street food junction famous across the state. Similarly each city in Gujarat state has its own street food hub famous for its variety of flavors.