Not many know that I come from the lesser known land of Temples, Orissa. Though I have not really stayed there, we visited every year and I feel like home when I land there. As Dad was stationed in Andhra, Mom mostly cooked the spicy food and very less of our native food. So the annual visits go by having the traditional food there. After coming to US, I had ample time to try my hand at cooking and one fine day, I was in mood of the Odisha cuisine.
Some more unique dishes that come to my mind are Pakhal Bhaath, it is cooked rice with salt water and yogurt (optional), a must for Summers. My friends in school would be surprised at this one. Then we have the Rasgullas, if you ever visit Bhubaneswar, don’t forget to stop by Pahala (locals call it pahado), the largest market in the world for chenna sweets. It is 15 km away from Bhubaneswar on the highway connecting to Cuttack, with I guess around 60 shops on the either side of the road. You will find the authentic Rosogolla in various sizes, and Chennapoda and Chennagaja. Here is how a shop there looks like, I could drown in there. And you get samples too. 😉
Next I love the street food there too. We have Singada which is nothing but Samosa with a different kind of potato (with skin) fry filling. Then we have the Gupchup, which is again our own Panipuri and cold Dahi bara (bara is just like vada – You know how we spell a ‘v’ as ‘b’) topped with hot Aloo Dum and Ghuguni chaat (which is just the regular chickpeas chaat).
The list goes on with the traditional Fish curry, I hope to learn it someday and the different kinds of chops and rolls. My mouth is watering already, I hope you enjoyed this tour.