India is famous as a country of great diversity, and the diverse culture in every state is something we all are proud of. And the diversity isn't just limited to culture, but rather, it touches every part of the daily Indian life. There is diversity in how people of different states converse, celebrates festivals, or even the snacks they have. This gives birth to the famous saying, "Unity in diversity". Let us see how Indians unite within their diverse range of snacks.
1. Misal Pav - Maharashtra
What ramen is to the Japanese, Misal is to the Maharashtrians. Misal Pav is one of the many Pav dishesh, famous in Maharashtra, specially in its capital, Mumbai. There are different versions of Misal Pav all over Maharashtra. The dish is occasionally accompanied by coriander, onion, and sev with the obvious Pav, which is bread or rolls toasted with butter. Usually quite spicy, the exact taste of the dish varies from location to location, with Nashik Misal, Kohlapuri Misal, Puneri Misal and Khandesi Misal being some famous variants. Misal Pav is also common as a breakfast dish. The conventional snack is so famous, you can find different varieties over everywhere, even in top resturants and hotels in Mumbai.
2. Paalakaayalu - Andhra Pradesh
A savoury crunchy rice-based ball-like snack from Andra Pradesh, Paalakaayalu is a state favourite, usually accompanied by a hot cup of tea in the evening. This deep-fried snack is made of rice flour, freshly grated coconut, salt, chilli powder and a dash of hing. It can be both sweet and spicy, and the tiny balls are a firm favourite with little children.
3. Poha - Madhya Pradesh
The ever favourite Poha, a delicacy from the state of Madhya Pradesh is one of the healthiest snacks you will find. Poha is the Marathi word for flattened or beaten rice. It's generally made of beaten rice, with spices, nuts and onions. The ease of preparation has made Poha an essential preparation in kitchens all over the country because it requires very little cooking and can be easily readied in around 30 minutes.
4. Kathi Rolls - West Bengal
The ever famous Kathi Roll from the City of Joy, Kolkata, is heaven in every right. Made from parathas filled with kebabs and veggies, the Kathis are a perfect evening meal. Some eateries in Kolkata are famous for their preparation of this dish, with Nizam's being credited as being the origin of this convenient street snack. The Bengali version of a wrap, this dish depends on the filling, which can range from a choice of meat to paneer or vegetables. You can find amazing variants of the kathi roll throughout the city in street stalls, take away shops and even in good resturants and hotels in Kolkata
5. Khaman - Gujrat
Khaman is a classic evening snack, which is mainly eaten in Gujarat. This sour delicacy is prepared from freshly ground chana dal after they are soaked in water. It is a soft and fluffy steamed cake usually served with a chutney. Prepared in 30-40 minutes, Khaman is any vegetarian's dream snack. A common fallacy is to consider Khaman as its counterpart Dhokla, which is made from a fermented batter of rice and chickpeas. Khaman while being a Gujrat snack, is available in most metro cities in India, so don't be surprise seeing this dish being served in a hotel in Mumbai or a hotel in Kolkata under the alias of Dhokla.
6. Kangshoi - Manipur
Kangshoi is a vegetable stew from Manipur, with the name translating to broth in English. It is normally made of potato, tomato, spinach, onion with choices of herbs and spices. It is supposed to be consumed piping hot, making it a perfect accompaniment for the cold Manipuri winter nights. Kangshoi is also sometimes served with rice and is sometimes topped with fish.
7. Pitha - Assam
A common snack from the east side of the country, Pitha is a rice cake snack which is mainly famous in Assam. It can be both sweet and savoury and eaten as a breakfast and an evening snack as well. It is traditionally prepared on the occasion of Bihu and can be of many different types depending on the filling and the method of preparation. Some examples are Kachi Pitha, Ghila Pitha, Sunga Pitha, etc.
8. Kachori - Rajashtan
The quintessential Rajasthani snack, kachori has become famous all over India. It is usually made of flour, and stuffed with a baked mixture of dal, besan, pepper, chilli, salt, and other spices. It is usually served with an accompanying chutney. The Kota Kachori is the most famous variant, which is distinguished by its signature taste of hing. Other variations include the Peyaaj Kachori and the sweet Mawa Kachori.
9. Fish Fry - Punjab
The Punjabi or Amritsari fish fry has rightfully earned its place as a firm favourite in a state usually associated with chicken. Fried fish coated with flour batter and served with chutney. This delicacy is widely available everywhere, from street food stands to top restaurants and hotels nearby. This crispy dish has become famous all across the country, and can be eaten with rice in a meal or can be enjoyed just as an evening snack.
10. Bara - Ghuguni - Odisha
A popular delicacy of Odisha, Bara and Ghuguni can be eaten separately, but usually is most enjoyed as a combination due to its delectable flavour. Bara is crispy on the outside and spongy on the inside, prepared with urad dal. Ghuguni is a spicy dried peas curry. It can also be enjoyed as a breakfast meal. Readily available in street food stands across the state, this cheap but filling snack is perfect for every situation.
These were few of the many diverse snacks the people of different states enjoy. The snacks are not exclusive to states and can be found in neighbouring states as well, like finding Ghuguni at resturants or hotels in Kolkata common. In some cases, variants are available across the country, or even beyond the country. Food brings people together, and this list is a mouthwatering testament to that fact.