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Gujarat Cuisine

Gujarati cuisine refers to the cuisine of the Gujaratis from India, who are predominant in western-India. It is primarily vegetarian. The typical Gujarati Thali consists of Roti (a flat bread made from wheat flour), daal or kadhi, rice, and sabzi/shaak (a dish made up of different combinations of vegetables and spices, which may be stir fried, spicy or sweet). Cuisine can vary widely in flavor and heat, depending on a given family's tastes as well as the region of Gujarat they are from. North Gujarat, Kathiawad, Kachchh, and South Gujarat are the four major regions of Gujarat that all bring their own style to Gujarati food. Many Gujarati dishes are distinctively sweet, salty, and spicy at the same time. They can also be very oily.

Staples include homemade pickles, Khichdi (rice and lentil or rice and mung bean daal), and chhaas (buttermilk). Main dishes are based on steamed vegetables and daals that are added to a vaghaar, which is a mixture of spices sterilized in hot oil that varies depending on the main ingredient. Salt, sugar, lemon, lime, and tomato are used frequently to prevent dehydration in an area where temperatures reach 50C (120F) under the shade. It is common to add a little sugar or jaggery to some of the sabzi/shaak and daal. The sweet flavour of these dishes is believed to neutralize the slightly salty taste of the water.

The cuisine changes with the seasonal availability of vegetables. The spices used also change depending on the season. Garam Masala and its constituent spices are used less in summer. Regular fasting, with diets limited to milk and dried fruits, and nuts, are commonplace.

In modern times, some Gujaratis have become increasingly fond of very spicy and fried dishes. There are many chefs who have come up with fusions of Western and Gujarati food.

A very healthy meal popular in the villages near Saurashtra during the cold winters consists of thick Rotis, termed Bhakhri, made of Wheat flour, garlic chutney, onion pieces and Buttermilk. It is a good source of energy which suits low-income villagers working on their fields in the cold days.

Sweets (desserts) made from such ingredients as local sugar cane, jaggery (a solid made from unrefined cane sugar), milk, almonds, and pistachios were originally served at weddings and family occasions as an instant energy booster for relations travelling long distances to attend.

With so much variety in vegetarian food, the Indian British cookbook writer Madhur Jaffrey has termed Gujarati cuisine as "the haute cuisine of vegetarianism" in 'Flavours of India', one of her TV shows about Indian food.

Some of the more popular Gujarati dishes are mentioned below.


Fulka rotli, also called Rotli or Chapati, made with whole wheat flour, rolled thin
Puri, made with whole wheat flour, deep fried
Thepla, also called Dhebara, made with a mixture of flours, mildly spiced, usually contains shredded vegetables
Bhakhri, made with whole wheat flour, thicker than Rotli, crispy
Bajri no rotlo, thick millet flour flatbread usually grilled over coals
Juvar no rotlo, thick sorghum flatbread
Parotha, similar to the North Indian paratha
Puran Poli(Vedmi), whole wheat bread with sweet moong dal filling usually made for special occasions


Plain rice
Pulao ( Rice with vegetable )
Khichadi ( Rice & Dal cooked in a porridge style )

Vegetables Shaak (Subzi/Vegetables/Curries)

Undhiyu, a combination of eggplant, tubers, slow cooked with special spices traditionally in a clay pot
Sev Tameta nu Shaak (Sev Tomato Curry)
Bateta nu Shaak (Potato Curry)[1]
Bateta Sukhi Bhaji (Dry Potato Curry)
Ringan nu Shaak (Eggplant Curry)
Dudhi nu Shaak (Bottle Gourd or Squash Curry)
Ganthiya nu Shaak
Guavar nu shaak
Tindola nu shaak
Bhinda nu shaak
(Okra Curry)
Kobi Bataka nu shaak ( Cabbage Potato vegetable )
Dudhi Mag ni dal nu shaak
Dudhi Ganthia nu shaak
Dudhi Bataka nu rasawalu shaak
( Bottle Gourd & Potato curry in a gravy )
Chola nu shaak ( lentil curry )
Mag-Math nu shaak ( lentil curry )
Mag nu suku shaak ( dry Mung curry )
Tameta Bataka nu rasawalu shaak ( Tomato Potato gravy vegetable )
Kantola nu shaak ( one type of slight bitter tasting vegetable )
Karela nu shaak ( Bittergourd vegetable )
Ringna no oolo ( meshed Eggplant curry )
Methi nu shaak
Parwal Bateta nu shaak
Fansi nu shaak
( French beans vegetable )
Palak Bateka or Palak Paneer nu shaak
Suva ni bhaji nu shaak
Kanda Bateka nu shaak
( Onion Potato vegetable )
Gajar no sambharo ( Stirred Carrot vegetable )
Fansi ma Dhokli nu shaak
( delectable combination of french beans and spiced dumplings )
Panchkutiyu shaak ( Five vegetables curry )

Farsan (Side Dishes)

Sev Khamani
Lilva Kachori
Methi na Gota
Paani Puri
Handwo ( steamed dish )
Rasya Muthia, a spicy yogurt dumpling soup
Daal Dhokli

"Nasto" (Deep fried snack foods made with besan/gram or a similar type of flour)


Daal (Soups)
Moong Daal
Meethi (Sweet) Kadhi

Mithai (Sweets)

Keri no ras
(sweet from Surat)
Ghebar or Ghevar (sweet from Surat)
Son Papdi
Magas (or Magaj)
Gud papdi ( Gol papdi )
Shiro, roasted semolina/flour/dal with milk, butter, sugar, nuts and raisins

, a thick yogurt-based sweet dessert garnished with ground nuts, cardamom, and saffron
Laapsi, coarse ground/ broken wheat cooked with butter and sugar
Doodhpak, a milk-based sweet dessert with nuts
Shakkarpara, a deep fried snack made out of sugar and wheat
Copra paak - Coconut halwa/barfi: Halwa is soft, barfi more like cake
Gajar Halwo - Carrot Halwa
Dudhi no Halwo - Bottle Gourd Halwa
Gur - unrefined brown sugar sold in blocks

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