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The sub-zero temperature outside means it's time for the winter delicacies to come out in Kashmir. And by winter delicacies we mean the sun-dried vegetables from the last season. Though these days fresh vegetables are available in local markets, using the dried vegetables is still in practice in many households. They have been doing this since the days of poor connectivity and even poorer storage facilities. If it was a good idea then, it still is even now. At the onset of winter in Kashmir, when it used to be difficult to find fresh vegetables in the fields and the valley totally cut off from the rest of the world for a long period of time, one would only find easy-to-store vegetables like potatoes, turnips, radish, lotus stem or nadru and collard greens, locally known as haak. The locals dry the vegetables available during summer and consume them on lean harsh winter days. From brinjals to gourds to chillies, everything gets sun-dried. Now even though there is availability of 'fresh' produce in the market, these dried vegetables are considered as winter delicacies.
Keeping this efficient practice in mind, Fortune Resort Heevan and WelcomHotel Pine and Peak have come up with a winter food festival called Hokh Syun Festival, to last throughout the month of February. During this festival there will be an interesting spread of choicest of dishes of those sun-dried vegetables. The festival is a celebration of food and old Kashmiri custom and tradition. If you are a foodie and will travel for food, then this festival is for you. For it is here that you will find delicious Bote Cher Mutton (Mutton and dried Apricots), Warmiuth Dail (Special Kashmiri Pulses), Gair Goji (Dried water chestnuts), Ruwangan Hachi (Dried Tomatoes), Al Hachi (Dried Bottle Gourd).
What: Hokh Syun Festival
Where: Fortune Resort Heevan and WelcomHotel Pine and Peak, Kashmir
Contact: 9419484652 / 01942464100 for reservations
When: Whole month of February
How to Reach: Srinagar Airport is 15 km away and is well-connected to major Indian cities. One can fly Air Inda, GoAir, IndiGo and Jet Airways from Delhi, Goa, Jammu, Leh, Mumbai and Bangalore. There are local taxi services from the airport to other parts of Kashmir.
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