The taste of Nepal

November 30, 2018 09:29 AM The Week Bureau


Dal Bhat is definitely the unofficial national dish of Nepal. But beside this king of all dishes, the Nepali cuisine offers various other delicacies that are unique and authentic to the country and the people living here.

Here we bring to you some recipes of traditional Nepali foods that as a Nepali you absolutely must know how to make. 

Sikarni

Sikarni is a classic Nepali dessert that is a staple for special events and occasions. It has a simple recipe and does not require a lot of ingredients for its preparation. You could also have this as your breakfast if you alter the amount of sugar you use during the recipe and 
add a bit of cereal or oats to it.

Ingredients
    Yogurt
    Sugar or other 
    sweet substitute 
    for it
    Milk
    Finely chopped 
    nuts
    Cinnamon powder
    Cardamom powder
    Chopped, sliced or diced fruits – optional
    Saffron – optional

Directions
    On a clean piece of cheesecloth, pour all the yogurt you are going to use for this recipe and tie the ends together to make something that resembles a pouch.
    Hang this makeshift pouch for about eight hours or overnight with a big bowl underneath it to drain the water from the yogurt. The bowl placed underneath this cheesecloth pouch collects the water dripping out of it.
    Take the yogurt out of the cheesecloth and pour it into a bowl.
    Add sugar, cinnamon powder, cardamom powder and chopped nuts into it and mix it all together.
    Slowly pour in the milk and start whisking everything together until you get a fluffy and creamy texture. This should take about 10 minutes of whisking.
    Refrigerate for half an hour and serve after topping the sikarni with the fruits and saffron.

Chatamari

Chatamari is pizza done in a Nepali way. It’s primarily a Newari dish but it’s enjoyed throughout the country. This is a recipe that uses meat but for a vegetarian rendition, you can simply eliminate the use of meat and follow the same recipe.

Ingredients
    Rice Flour
    Ghee or butter
    Salt
    Eggs – beaten
    Water
    Onions
    Tomatoes
    Garlic
    Ginger
    Black pepper powder
    Minced meat – preferably chicken

Directions
    Chop the onions, tomatoes, garlic and ginger.
    Heat a pan over medium flame and add a few tablespoons of ghee into it.
    Add ginger, onion, and garlic and fry them until they turn golden brown.
    Add meat, salt, and pepper into the oil and cook for about five minutes.
    Add the tomatoes and cook for one more minute before turning off the stove.
    Now prepare the crust batter by mixing together the rice flour, eggs, water, and salt in a bowl.
    Heat another pan and add ghee into it.
    After about two minutes, pour the crust batter into the pan and spread it around evenly to make a thin fine crust.
    Cook it with the (pan’s) lid on for about five minutes.
    Remove the lid, add the meat topping mix, and cover it with the lid again.
    Cook for a few more minutes and then turn off the heat and serve hot. 

Gundruk Sadheko

Gundruk essentially is a condiment. But it is loved to such a great extent in Nepal that people have it in all ways and forms. Here is an easy to follow recipe for gundruk sadheko to satisfy your gundruk cravings.

Ingredients
    Mustard greens – chopped
    White radish – cut into small and thin slices
    Cabbage – chopped like in salads
    Spinach – chopped 
    Red onion – finely chopped
    Tomatoes – finely chopped
    Garlic – minced, 
    Ginger – minced
    Red chili – minced 
    Coriander – finely chopped
    Lemon juice
    Vegetable oil – preferably mustard
    Szechuan pepper (timmur) 
    Asafoetida (hing)
    Salt

Directions
    Sun dry all the chopped vegetables for at least one whole day. Keep shifting and turning them at regular intervals so that all of the moisture dries out.
    Place all the wilted vegetables in an airtight jar, tighten the lid and leave it at a warm place for two to three days.
    Then drain the liquid collected inside the jar.
    Tighten the lid over it again and leave it to ferment for about a week.
    The gundruk is now ready. You can store it in the refrigerator for future use or make its sadheko version right away.
    In a clean bowl, place the gundruk, garlic, chili, coriander, ginger, lemon juice, vegetable oil, Szechuan pepper, and asafoetida and mix them together.
    Refrigerate for an hour before serving.

Chukauni

Chukauni is a popular dish from Palpa district. It’s essentially a spicy potato and yogurt salad but it’s also served as a side dish with other more filling main dishes. 

Ingredients
    Potatoes
    Green peas – soaked in water overnight
    Onions, 
    Yogurt
    Coriander powder
    Cumin powder
    Green chilies
    Salt
    Vegetable oil – preferably mustard
    Turmeric powder
    Fresh coriander leaves
    Fresh lemon juice
    Sichuan pepper (timmur) 
    Fenugreek seeds (methi)
    Garlic

Directions
    Boil the potatoes, peel them and dice them.
    Chop the green chilies, onion, garlic, and the coriander leaves.
    Add the potatoes, peas, chilies, onion, yogurt, salt, Sichuan pepper, cumin powder, coriander powder, and lemon juice to a bowl and mix them together.
    Heat a pan over medium flame and add a few tablespoons of oil into it.
    A minute later, add the fenugreek seeds and garlic. Turn off the heat when the fenugreek seeds turn dark brown.
    Add a pinch of turmeric powder and then pour the mixture over the potato mix.
    Garnish with coriander leaves and serve.


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