Drool over the delicacies of Bihar

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Bihar, one of the largest states in India, both in terms of area as well as population, is known for its association with Lord Buddha. Bihar is where the Buddha began his journey to enlightenment. It served as a center of power, learning and culture in ancient India and now, is regarded as a major tourist destination. Apart from its varied attractions, the state is also known for its luscious, scrumptious, mouth-watering and drool-inducing cuisine, with sweets forming a major specialty. You are sure to lick your fingers once you are done emptying your plate full of these amazing delicacies.

Bihar food or Bihar cuisine, as it can be said, has a long history that can be traced back to the kings that ruled here or the civilization that flourished here. Rice forms an integral part of the meals in almost every Bihar household. Since the days of the Buddha, the staple food of the people of Bihar has been rice. It is said that rice was served to Huien Tsang at Nalanda.A typical Bihari house meal would include bhat (rice),dal (lentil),tarkari (vegetables) and achar (pickle). Traditionally Mustard oil has been the main cooking medium. Diary products are consumed frequently throughout the year, with common foods including Yoghurt known as Dahi and Buttermilk known as Mattha, ghee, lassi and butter.

Eventhough Bihar has a strong influence of the Buddhist traditions; unlike Gujratis and other communities, Bihar food also does have a lot to offer to the non-vegetarians. The meat of goat, pig, deer, peacock, etc. and fish are all consumed by the people of Bihar. In fact, it was believed that offering of meat to the guests was a holy act which was equal to performing the dvadasah (the 12th day) sacrifice. Biharians are quite famous for their Bihari Kebabs another typical Bihari non vegetarian dish. This dish was traditionally made from mutton and is eaten with Roti, Paratha (sort of pita) or boiled rice. Thus, in spite of being the genesis for Jainism and Buddhism which celebrates ahimsa; slaughter houses do thrive in Bihar.

Talking of the famous Bihar foods, Bihar has so much to satiate the taste buds of every human on this earth.Here is a list of the top 10.

1. Litti Chokha
This particular dish, baked from wheat flour dough that is stuffed with a mixture of roasted or fried gram flour(sattu), spices and lemon juice, and served with chokha (baked and pulped vegetables) and lots of ghee. This forms the soul food for all occasions in Bihar. Truly.

2. Thekua/Khajuria
Ask a Bihari friend the occasions when this sweet is made at home and he will say all. Thekua or Khajuria is a snack made from wheat flour(maida), jaggery (or sugar) mixed together, moulded and deep fried in ghee. Well, yes, it isn’t for those watching their weight.

3. Khaja(Silao)
This wafer sweet snack is made from flour and sugar, is deep fried and then dipped in hot sugar syrup.This delicacy roots from Silao village, situated about 15 km from Biharsarif and 8 km from Rajgir.There is a wide variety in khajas – Chandshahi, Round, Palvidar and Gandhi Topa. Amongst these, the one with rectangular shape is the most popular.

4. Khurma/Shakarpara
This snack made of flour and salt is deep fried and dipped in sugar syrup. As the sugar syrup cools off, it crystallizes. This is prepared mainly on special occasions.

5. Malpua
Malpua is one sweetmeat all Biharis swear by for every special event and festival. Its batter is made by mixing flour, milk, sugar and mashed bananas, grated coconut, cashew nut, raisin, sugar, water and green cardamom and is deep fried in such a way that the edges go all crispy while the center is all soft. If you happen to visit Bihar anytime in the future, make sure you don’t miss on it.

6.Kadhi/badi
While this savory dish is an everyday affair, making it on Holi is a must for people from Bihar. Gram flour is the main ingredient for both the kadhi (gravy) and the badi/pakodas.

7.Dal puri
Talking of traditional food of Bihar, dalpuri is the first name that comes to our minds..We all know puri and we love it. But dal puri is another level of awesomeness. It is basically a type of bread, made of salted wheat flour, which is filled with boiled-crushed gram-pulse that has been fried with special spices The Bengal gram stuffing of the puri makes it more filling and yummier.

8.Balushahi
Runi-Saidpur, is the town that is famous for its Balushahi. The sweet comprises of a specially treated combination of maida (wheat floor) and sugar, which is cooked with ghee.These donut lookalikes made from flour and buttermilk are shuddh desi and definitely appetizing.

9. Kheer Makhana (Darbhanga)
If you have come to Bihar and not tasted Kheer-Makhana, then your trip is as good as incomplete. It is a sweet dish prepared with milk, sugar and makhana, also known as fox nut ,considered to be a specialty of the Darbhanga region of north Bihar. This different version of kheer is made in a similar way like the normal kheer but is not as sweet because of the slightly salty taste of the fox nuts.

10. Pedukiya
Pedukiya for which Chhapra town of Bihar is famous, is a cake-like preparation.It is Probabaly Bihar’s most famous fried sweet made by stuffing flour stuffed with suji(semolina), khoya or grated coconut and is specially made during the Teej festival in Bihar.

Water in your Mouth already? So go ahead and plan you trip to Bihar soon.

References : http://www.storypick.com/15-must-have-bihari-dishes/

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