For many Canadians trying a new cuisine for the first time can be simply overwhelming. Are you new to Indian food? Names of dishes aren’t familiar and ‘heat’ levels can be very different.
Every country is renowned for certain types of dishes – think Italy – think pizza.
Five Dishes to Start With When You're New to Indian Food
Here we’ve created a list of 5 choices you might try if you’re new to Indian food. As a side note, most Indian menus let you know the ‘heat’ levels of each dish depicted by the number of hot pepper icons.
A staple of all Indian menus, Naan is a sort of flat bread with a light fluffy texture that has been baked in a clay oven. There are different flavours of Naan from garlic to paneer (an Indian cottage cheese). Naan is a wonderful bread to help soak up the delicious curries or butter chicken sauce.
Samosas are likely the most known Indian snack or appetizer eaten. An easy to handle, crispy triangle-shaped pastry filled with vegetables or meat, Samosas make the perfect flavour filled snack.
Butter Chicken is one of the best-known menu staples in any Indian restaurant. In fact it was debated on whether it should be considered India’s national dish. This dish consists of chunks of chicken that have been marinated in spices and yogurt, then roasted and served in a tomato sauce. This is a great dish to eat with Naan.
No Indian meal is complete without this dish. Biryani is a rice dish that can be served with meat and/or veggies. It consists of several different layers of rice cooked with a myriad of seasonings.
After enjoying your first Indian meal, finish off with this perfect meal-ending dessert. Gulab Jaamun is made with paneer and koya, deep fried and served in simple syrup often flavoured with rose water.
Masala Chai is a deliciously fragrant cup of tea simmered with milk and a mixture of aromatic herbs and spices.
Indian dishes are well-known for featuring complex flavours (sometimes as many as 25-30 different spices), but that’s just part of it. Many Indian chefs adhere to an Ayurvedic principle that says every dish should contain 6 key elements of taste; sweet, sour, salty, bitter, pungent and astringent – all at once.
Try out Tandoori Kingdom
Their menu awaits you.
Written By: Jane Laker
Photo Credit: Stephen Elliott