- The confluence of varied cultural influences in the Assam Valley has led to the staggering variety.
- The Assamese, as a people, have a palate for anything that is tangy.
Assamese cuisine (Assamese: অসমীয়া ৰন্ধন-শৈলী) is the cuisine of Assam. It is a style of cooking that is a confluence of cooking habits of the hills that favor fermentation and drying as forms of food preservation and those from the plains that provide fresh vegetables and abundance of fish from its rivers and ponds; both of which are centered on the main ingredient—rice. The confluence of varied cultural influences in the Assam Valley has led to the staggering variety and flavors in the Assamese food.
Assamese Vegetarian Thali
Traditionally, Assamese meals are served on bell-metal, “kanh” utensils, an alloy of tin and copper, known for their auspicious characteristic. One traditional Assamese plate is made up of an alloy metal called Ka(n)h in Assamese. This is an Assamese copy write product as it is produced only in the state. A royal or most respectful version is a High Plate with stands for bowls.
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- Yellow dal cooked with tomatoes and “maan dhonia” or culantro/long coriander leaves. Never fails to amaze me how culantro can alleviate a dish to the next level.
- Rice: “Joha Saul”, an extremely fragrant variety of rice, Assam being its largest cultivator in the country, is sure to make one want to go for second helpings.
- “Koldil Bhoja”: Banana flower, an integral part of Assamese cuisine, cooked in fragrant mustard oil along with lots of onions and aromatic ginger and garlic.
- “Gajir Bor”: Crispy fritters made using chickpeas and green gram mixed with onions, ginger, garlic, spices and coriander. Chickpeas and green gram is together used as prasad in Assam in religious rites and rituals and leftovers are creatively used in many recipes.
- “Baahor gaaj aru bhut jolokiar chutney”: A spicy, drool-worthy pickle made with bamboo shoots and Ghost Chillies.
- Salad, chilli, and a slice of “gol nemu” (lemon)
বৰৰ টেঙা (Boror Tenga)
The Assamese, as a people, have a palate for anything that is tangy. Especially during scorching summer afternoons, we love to finish our meals with something tangy, sour and refreshing. The agent used to make our curries tangy can be chosen from a plethora of options like lemons, tomatoes, elephant apple and so on. For today’s lunch we have something which is Called “Boror Tenga”, we first make fritters with a well-seasoned paste of red lentils, chillies, and onions. We then immerse and simmer them in a curry made from tomatoes, finishing it with a good amount of lemon juice, slit green chillies and fresh coriander leaves. The fritters release their flavour into the curry and eaten with steamed rice, this curry is perfect for humid Assamese summers. The basic concept of this curry is similar to the iconic “Kadhi Pakora” of Northern India.
Source- Debbie D