India is a melting pot of different cultures and food habits. It is too fascinating to see that every region has its unique food habit that depends much on its history, geography, economy and weather. While North India cuisine includes oodles of ghee and butter in their recipes, coconut, seafood and tangy flavour dominates the food culture of South India. Likewise, if you explore East India, you will find fish (especially freshwater fish) being staple for all. Almost everyone in the four states of Eastern India – Bengal, Bihar, Odisha and Jharkhand – thrive on ‘macher jhol’ and ‘bhaat’.
But if you think the cuisines here revolve around fish, then we afraid, you might be wrong. Every region of East India has rich culinary history that is deep rooted and versatile. Besides fish-based dishes, it also offers a wide range of vegetarian dishes that will leave you amazed.
We handpicked some of the most popular vegetarian dishes from West Bengal, Bihar and Odisha that will give you a sneak peek into the rich and extensive vegetarian cuisine of East India.
Veg Cuisine Of East India: 7 Classic Vegetarian Recipes For You:
Let’s agree, we all are well aware of this iconic dish of Bihar. Also popular in Jharkhand, litti chokha defines the state’s food culture. It is wholesome, has a rustic flavour and strikes a chord with every Indian palate. We have the recipe of this classic dish for you to try. Click here for the recipe.
Due to its rich nutrient profile, sattu is a staple in Bihar and Jharkhand. You will find people making various recipes with sattu and enjoying year-round. One such popular recipe is sattu paratha. Paratha, made with spicy sattu filling, this dish is a must-try. Click here of the recipe.
A traditional Bengali thali is just not complete without shukto. It is basically a karela-based bitter sabzi that also includes raw banana, aloo, baingan, drumsticks and Bengali bori (waadiyan). Quintessentially, shukto is eaten as the first side-dish with rice and works as a palate cleanser before getting on with the main course. Besides, it is healthy and light on stomach. Click here for the recipe.
Chana dal kebab dunked in a fiery and spicy aloo curry- dhokar dalna spells indulgence. It is one Bengali veg dish that can give mutton kosha or macher jhol a run for money. We suggest, try it once for a flavourful meal experience. Click here for the recipe.
If you enjoy Bengali cuisine, then you sure have come across the famous breakfast combo – luchi and cholar dal. Soft, flaky puri paired with mildly spiced chana dal (with raisins and coconut) make us slurp instantly. Click here for the recipe.
The cuisine of Odisha leaves you enough room for exploration. It is diverse, extensive and has some unique dishes to its credits – badi chura being one of them. Fried wadi, crushed and mixed with onion, chilli et al makes a crunchy and flavourful side-dish, when paired with dal chawal or pakhala bhata (fermented rice). You also have it as a stand-alone side-dish with steamed rice and ghee. Click here for the recipe.
Also called dahi baigana, it is a sour side dish served alongside a traditional Odia thali. It is also referred to as ‘khatta’. Here, baingan is fried with some basic spices and dunked in a raita-like dahi mix. It looks much like North Indian tadka dahi. Click here for the recipe.
Try these classic vegetarian dishes from all the regions of Eastern India and do let us know which one you liked the most.
About Somdatta SahaExplorer- this is what Somdatta likes to call herself. Be it in terms of food, people or places, all she craves for is to know the unknown. A simple aglio olio pasta or daal-chawal and a good movie can make her day.