Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Glorious Food in Nepal

People have asked me before about the type of food available in Nepal, and especially on long treks in the remote mountains.

In this post I'll share with you photos of food in Nepal that I've had the experience of tasting during my three trips to that country.

(1) DHAL BHAT

The most common dish in Nepal is the dhal bhat:

This is dhal bhat with chicken curry that I ate in the mountains.


Dhal bhat served on heavy bronze cutlery in a fancy restaurant in Kathmandu.


The dhal bhat consist of steamed rice, lentil soup, vegetables and papad. You can also order chicken curry to go with it.

The local people eat dhal bhat for brunch, lunch and throughout the day. I daresay that the dhal bhat can be considered as the national dish of Nepal, if there's such a title.

The guides and porters in the mountain eat dhal bhat for ALL their meals. They claim that dhal bhat gives them energy to trek for hours on end. There's even a poem that goes like this:

Dhal bhat power, 
24-hour, 
No sleep, no shower

Apart from the dhal bhat, there're also other rice dishes like this simple meal of steamed rice and vegetable curry:

There's no fresh meat in the mountains, so I requested for a fried egg instead.


Fried rice is also another rice dish which is widely available:

Ate this mixed fried rice in the Langtang region. I love that they sprinkled cheese all over it.


(2) MOMO

The second food that I would like to introduce to you is the momo:

Momo skins are like the skin of Chinese dumplings. However momos can have various fillings like chicken, vegetable, cheese or even a combination of all. Momos are served with a dip which is usually tomato based.


During my recent trip to Nepal I had momos in soup for the first time:


Momos in tomato based soup.


(3) THUKPA

Third item on the list is thukpa:

Thukpa is a Tibetan noodle soup.


Not many people would know what a thukpa is when hearing it for the first time. Even I didn't know what it was but got acquainted with it soon after my first trip to Nepal in 2012. 


(4) TIBETAN BREAD

During my recent trip to Nepal, the Tibetan bread that I had in the Langtang region was flat and round like a chapati. It was different from the Tibetan bread found in the Annapurna region where it's puffed out like this:

Tibetan bread found in the Annapurna region is shaped like a colon (couldn't think of any other way to describe it) and puffed out.


Our guide, Sujan explained that Tibetan bread is prepared differently in different parts of Nepal which explains its different shapes.


(5) SOUP

If you would like to have a light meal, you can try the soup like this mushroom soup served with an omelette.



Sujan informed that ginger soup or tea is a good for attitude sickness and I drank it few times during the trek:

I told myself that I must finish reading Kiss the Girls during this recent 2 week trip to Nepal. Indeed, I finished reading the book and left it at Hotel Yambu for other travellers.


(6) NEWARI FOOD

According to Wikipedia, the Newar people are historical inhabitants of Kathmandu. Here are some Newari food:

Nobita wanted to try catamari (top left) which looks like a pizza. Raj ended up ordering another 3 items for the three of us which you can see in the photo. 


(7) OTHER TYPES OF FOOD

Pasta is also widely available:

I had this mixed pasta for breakfast during my stay in Dhunche.


And here's a collage of food that we ate in one of the restaurants in Kathmandu:
Clockwise from top left: Momo in tomato soup, chowmein (yes you read it right, they call it chowmein too like in Cantonese), briyani and briyani with papad.


Just to give you an idea of the choices of food (and prices) available at the teahouses in Nepal, here's the menu at one of the guesthouse in Thulo Shrapu:



All prices are in Nepali Rupee and as at September 2016.


So that's my pictoral introduction of food in Nepal. I hope you enjoyed looking at the photos as much as I enjoyed eating the food :-)


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