Eat Like A Local: For The Love Of Farsan

Eat Like A Local: For The Love Of Farsan
6 Gujarati snacks you can't resist, Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Savour the best of Gujarat as we take you on a gastronomic journey through the state

Roshni Subramanian
December 18 , 2019
08 Min Read

What does it mean to be a true-blue Gujju? If you thought breaking into a dandiya routine, stuffing your face with jalebi-fafda and being hooked to Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah is all that it takes, then apologies my friend. Pop culture has typecast Gujaratis and it’s as absurd as it gets. Gujjus - whether Amdavadi, Surati or Kutchi - are often viewed through the same lens. About time we moved beyond these stereotypes. Home to a plethora of culinary treasures, Gujarat is a paradise for vegetarians. An elaborate Gujarati affair reflects an exquisite blend of flavours. Here’s a guide on what not to miss when in the land of lions and legends. 

Undhiyu

 
 
 
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Straight out of Surat, wholesome, healthy and hard to resist, undhiyu is an absolute delight during the biting winters. A blend of winter veggies, including brinjal, green beans and plantain, undhiyu is typically served in earthen pots colloquially known as ‘matlu’. Derived from the Gujarati word ‘undhu’, which means 'upside down', this seasonal preparation is a speciality in Surat, Navsari and Valsad regions. 

Sev tameta nu shaak

 
 
 
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Not typically a snack, sev tameta nu shaak still holds a special place in the heart of a true Gujarati. Sweet, salty, spicy and tangy, it’s an explosion of flavours in your mouth. Prepared using a generous amount of tomatoes and garnished with crispy sev and fresh coriander, serve it with paranthas, theplas and phulkas and you’ve got yourself a hearty meal. This delicacy is not only a perfect blend of colour, texture, crunch and flavour, but is hard to resist on a cold winter morning. 

Dal dhokli

 
 
 
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Extremely popular in both Gujarat and Rajasthan, dal dhokli is a spicy, sweet one-pot meal. With a lentil-based gravy seasoned with spices, it’s a complete meal on its own. Soft textured dhokli is submerged in thick semi-sweet gravy with crushed peanuts. Prepared with dal and wheat flour as the main ingredients, dal dhokli is a typical Sunday morning delight. Apart from being delicious and wholesome, this Gujarati delicacy is also a hit among the health freaks. Traditionally made using leftover dal, you can relish this dish with a platter of rice. 

Khandvi

 
 
 
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Rolled-up in bite-sized chunks, khandvi has rightfully earned its reputation as one of Gujarat’s favourite snacks. Take it as a breakfast dish or tea-time snack, this melt-in-mouth snack is simply irresistible. Made of thin layers of gram flour cooked in buttermilk, it is seasoned with sauted sesame seeds and other spices. With a garnishing of curry leaves, coriander, mustard seeds and dessicated coconut, khandvi is equally popular in Maharashtra. When it comes to preparation, many might find it a little tricky - especially getting the batter right. Easy on the tummy and piquant on the tongue, this Gujarati snack is not to be missed.

Khaman

 
 
 
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One of the first visuals that come to one’s mind when thinking about Gujarati cuisine is the evergreen khaman and dhokla. And mind you Gujaratis are quite sensitive about their snacks. So before you go out and brag about your Gujju knowledge, you might want to get your basics right. To begin with, khaman is not the same as dhokla. We agree, though they aren’t poles apart, there is a distinct difference which is quite evident on the face of it. While khaman is made of gram flour and baked to a spongy bread-like texture, dhokla, is made of fermented rice or split chickpea and served with yogurt and green chutney. Slightly sweet and tangy, this snack is an ideal option when you’re looking for something healthy to gorge on. 

Doodh pak

A Gujarati variation of a typical Indian rice pudding, doodh pak is typically made using milk, rice, saffron, nuts and is best accompanied with pooris. Often found in an elaborate Parsi affair, doodh pak is reserved for special occasions and festivals. The goodness of milk coupled with the opulence of saffron, doodh pak is the perfect ending to a royal feast.


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