8 Pahari delicacies that are a must try | Recipes | Chef Sanjeev Kapoor

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If there ever is anything that can distract from the scenic beauty of Himachal Pradesh, it is the cuisine. A brilliant mix of traditional pahari food and Tibetan inspired fare – here are 8 dishes that will ensure you keep going back to the mountains! 

Khoru – buttermilk soup

Khoru is a thin buttermilk based soup that is tempered with spices. Khoru is an important part of dhaam – a Himachali thali. It is served warm and the spice hits you just the right amount to make you feel the warmth amidst the chilly hills. It is sometimes served with a sweet jaggery and sesame bun.

Tibetean Treats

Steamed, pan fried or deep fried and always served with a spicy sauce – momos are a must have on a trip to the mountains. Made with a variety of fillings including chicken, pork, buffalo meat and sometimes veggies, these dumplings are the crown of the cuisine. Another things that is a must have is thukpa – a spicy noodle soup, which like the momo is a result of the Tibetan influences in the state.

Himachali aloo puri

The north too like every other part of the country has its version of potato curry.  Here they make it with the addition of bamboo shoots which give a beautiful crunch to the curry. Along with crisp piping hot bhaturus, which are just like bhature – it makes a hit breakfast for the Himachali people.

Siddu – fermented steamed bread

This fermented, steamed wheat flour bread is soft and spongy – much like a Chinese bun. In the pahari region of India, siddu is served as an accompaniment to anything and everything – right from thin soups, sauces or along with the several spicy curries that the state boasts of. However, this bread is so good, you can relish it with just a drizzle of ghee or some green mint chutney.


If you ever manage to distract yourself from the scenic beauty of this Indian state, then turn your attention to the cuisine, which is just as good. Madra, is the Himachali version of chole, but fresher and lighter. Yogurt and mild spices gives it a slightly pale hue but plenty of flavour. Trying a dhaam or Himachali thali is a great way to sample all the awesome dishes this land has to offer.

Chha Gosht

Himachali cuisine offers a wide range of mutton and lamb dishes and the most popular of them is probably chha gosht. Marinated mutton pieces are cooked in a fiery yogurt based curry till succulent and falls off the bone. The final dish is a delicious mix of flavours that go great with any kind of bread – especially siddu.

Tudkiya Bhaat

Tudkiya Bhaat is the Himachali version of a khichdi and like everything else in this cuisine it is full of flavour and spice. Made with a mix of veggies, rice and lentils this is served with a side of mashed dal and a twist of lime. It is perfect comfort food for the chilli mountain weather.

Something sweet, finally!

A dhaam normally ends with sweet rice, studded with saffron and dried fruits simply called as meeta bhaat. Akotri, a pancake made with buckwheat leaves and whole wheat flour – is another pahari treat which will satisfy your sweet tooth. Plus it is super healthy too!


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MasterChef Sanjeev Kapoor

Chef Sanjeev Kapoor is the most celebrated face of Indian cuisine. He is Chef extraordinaire, runs a successful TV Channel FoodFood, hosted Khana Khazana cookery show on television for more than 17 years, author of 150+ best selling cookbooks, restaurateur and winner of several culinary awards. He is living his dream of making Indian cuisine the number one in the world and empowering women through power of cooking to become self sufficient. His recipe portal www.sanjeevkapoor.com is a complete cookery manual with a compendium of more than 10,000 tried & tested recipes, videos, articles, tips & trivia and a wealth of information on the art and craft of cooking in both English and Hindi.