Punjab the Tandoori Kingdom!

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The Punjab comprises of vast areas of Northern India and Eastern Pakistan, home to the Sikh population, also home to Muslim and Hindu too, but the Sikh is dominant here, with the centre of their faith located in the fantastic golden temple at Amritsar!

The Punjab is an agricultural heartland. Rich and fertile with the name Punjab meaning land of the Five rivers the Jhelum, the Chenab, the Ravi, the Sutlej, and the Beas, all being tributaries to the Indus with the Jhelum being the largest, these rivers being fed by the seasonal rains that make the Punjab such a gloriously rich place to farm

On every road side in the Punjab you will find the Dhabha, literally meaning a restaurant owned by a Punjabi,serving the local community and travellers with the rich and wholesome fare that is Punjabi cuisine.Two types of food are served in the Punjabi Dhabas – the Non Vegetarian cuisine, which is the most popular and the Vegetarian fare, which is termed Vaishno Dhabas where only vegetarian food is cooked in pure ghee or clarified white butter. Dal Makhni, a shining blackish lentil named Urad or Mah is a popular dish of this type of dhaba.

There are certain dishes which are exclusive to Punjab, such as sarson da saag, and the of course one should never forget tandoori chicken an indispensable dish at any family gathering or banquet, cooked in the tandoor with the most ancient ever found of these ovens being discovered in the Indus valley; With the oven in days gone by serving as a community oven serving all providing a focus for village and social life, and as such they could be set up cheaply and become very popular throughout all of india.

One should of course never for get that all time restaurant favourite Butter chicken, essentially a left overs recipe for tandoori chicken but now today a main course dish that the world has come to love. It is a delicate dish made with the aromatics such as fenugreek, cardomon and cinnamon, it is a colourful and easy to eat dish.

Punjabi Cuisine is also very responsive to the seasonal variation, winter brings forth the best in corn Breads Makke Ki Rotte to accompany that Sarson da saag, a highly nutritious and tasty vegetable dish , that is slow cooked and mashed with the addition of a few radishes or turnips and of course lashings of hot butter.

Much of what is loved in the restaurant originates from the heart of the Punjabi menu with Rogan Gosht and Biryani being at the centre of it, so be assured that the food of the Punjab be it vegetarian or meat is at the core of all that is good to eat, and offers many dishes that we in the west eat whenever we can.

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