Maharashtra has for its capital Bombay or Mumbai. Maharashtrian cuisine
comprises the coastal Konkan cuisine and the Varadi cuisine of interior Maharashtra. Marathi food uses a variety of vegetables,
fish, coconuts, peanuts and cashew nuts. Peanut oil is the main cooking medium,
the cardinal principle is that oil should not be visible in a dish and
therefore vegetables are usually steamed. Taat Vadhany-(a method offsetting
food on the plate) is the traditional and aesthetic way of serving food on a
Maharashtrian or Marathi food is the cuisine of the
Marathi-speaking people, those from the state of Maharashtra in India.
Maharashtrian cuisine covers a wide range from being extremely mild to very
spicy dishes. Although gaining popularity in India, it remains a mystery to most
Westerners. Wheat, rice, jowar,
vegetables, lentils and fruit form important components of Marathi diet.
Popular dishes include – Pooran
Poli and aamras..
Staple dishes are the -
or Chapati - Unleavened bread made of wheat flour, more common in urban
- Bread made of all kinds of flours, mainly jowar and bajra, form part of
daily food in rural areas.
Rice is eaten throughout Maharashtra and
is a large part of the daily meal, although Maharashtrians are not totally
dependent on rice only. Normally meals contain some form of bread, some
bhaji (sabzi) and some rice with dal.
The Bhaji is typically a vegetarian dish made from a
vegetable, with some masala. Masala essentially consists of onion, garlic and
mustard. A particular variant of bhaji is the rassa. Vegetarians prepare rassa
out of potatoes and or cauliflower with tomatoes or fresh coconut kernel and
plenty of water to produce a more fluid behaviour than bhaji. Dishes are
usually cooked with groundnut oil. The one masala that gives Maharashtrian
cuisine its authentic flavor is the goda masala or kalaa masala
Non-vegetarian dishes are mainly popular with the
predominant Maratha - warrior community and those really are very popular
amongst a lot of people. They are normally chicken or mutton dishes. The
taambda rassa (red curry) and pandhra rassa (white curry) of Kolhapuri chicken
dishes from the southern city of Kolhapur and Varhadi rassa especially well
known throughout the Marathi speaking world.
Appetizers - There are a lot of snack and side dishes in
Maharashtrian cuisine, although these days the South Indian delicacies of Dosa,
Idli and Medu-Vada have taken over along with a lot of popular Punjabi dishes,
especially in urban areas.
Some quintessential Marathi dishes are:
- Chudva: Also known as
Bombay Mix very famous overseas
-Pohay: Pohay or pohe is a snack made from a type of
rice flakes called poha. Normally onions, potatoes and green peas are added to
it. It is most likely served with tea and is probably the most common dish that
any Maharashtrian will offer his guest.
During arranged marriages in Maharashtra, Kanda-pohay or onion-pohay is the most
likely dish over which the boys and girls families meet. There are many
variations of the "poha" snack besides "kanda pohe"- you can
-"batata pohe"(where diced potatoes_-:.are
used instead of onion shreds);
-"Dadpe pohe", in which are added shredded
coconut and lots of (or Varhadi chicken curry) from Vidarbha region are green
-Upma or Sanja: This snack is similar to the South
Indian upma, but which is essentially porridge made of coarse wheat flour
perked up with spices.
-Suralichyaa paat-wadyaa: These are rolls of besan flour
stuffed with a garnishing of coconut kernel, coriander leaves and masala which
are subsequently fried in oil. The rolls need to have critical levels of
mechanical strength and also flexibility for their processing.
pav: Is the most popular Marathi dish and a lot has been said and written
pav: It’s another simple dish made from green peas in curry made of onion,
green chillies and sometimes garlic. Its eaten with a western style leavened
bread (or pav).
-Farasbichi Bhaji (French beans)
-Palakchi Takatli Bhaji (Spinach cooked in buttermilk)
-Kelphulachi/Phansachi Bhaji (Jackfruit preparation)
Popular Meat preparations are –
-Taambda rassa (Red curry)
-Pandhra rassa (White curry)
- Bombil Batat bhaji
Unlike western eating habits where soups are consumed before
the main course is eaten, soups are consumed along with the main course. Some
popular soups are -
- Tomato Saar
- Kokam Saar
Pickles and condiments -
- Ambyacha Loncha (Mango Pickle)
- Limbacha Loncha (Lemon Pickle)
- Awlyacha Loncha (Amla Pickle)
- Mohoricha Loncha (Mustard Pickle)
Some of the delicious Sweetmeats –
-Puran Poli: Is one of the most popular sweet item in
the Maharashtrian Cuisine It is made from jaggery (molasses or gur), yellow gram
(chana) dal, plain flour, cardamom powder and ghee.
An Indian sweet prepared either deep fried or steamed (Ukdiche Modak). Modak is
almost exclusively prepared during the Ganesha Festival around August, and is
often given as an offering Lord Ganesha, the elephant-headed "Remover of
Obstacles" (Vighna-haria). Modak is reportedly his favorite sweet.
-Karanji: Is a deep fried dumpling with a filling of
grated coconut sweetened with jaggery and flavored with powdered cardamom
seeds. It is also known as Kanola in some areas.
-Kheer: Kheer is a prepared by cooking shevaya (thin
rice or semolina noodles) in milk. The preparation is sweetened with jaggery or
sugar, flavored with powdered cardamom seeds and finally garnished with chopped
- Chirota or chirote or sweet puri
Called Jilbi in Maharashtra.
-Shrikhand: An improvised version with mango pulp is
known as Amrakhand.
-Basundi: Sweetened dense milk dessert.
-Gulachi poli is similar to puran poli but this does not
include chana daal. It is made up of grated jaggery, elaichi powder and nutmeg