Food of Odisha – 8 Dishes of Odia Cuisine That You Should Not Miss!
The cuisine of Odisha, popularly known as the Odia Cuisine, is a melange of varied items and practices. As Odisha is bordered by both North Indian and South Indian states, food of Odisha is majorly influenced by the food of North India, Bengal and Assam. Rice is the staple food of Odisha with mustard oil used as a cooking medium in many households. Yoghurt forms a major part of many dishes of Odisha while many sweets are based on chhena (a form of cheese). Odia cuisine is less oily and spice but a burst of flavours. Aptly called ‘the Goa of Eastern India’, Odisha is like a quintessential gourmet central for every foodie. So, here is our handpicked list of food of Odisha – 8 Dishes:
Known as Panipuri in Western India, Puchka in Bengal, Golgappa in the north and Gupchup in Odisha. This quick snack, which has almost become a staple across the nation, needs no introduction. This extremely popular street food comprises of small and crisp puris made from the dough of suji, maida and atta served together with chana masala and khatta Jal jeera. Probably one food which is loved by every age group and enjoyed at any time of the day. The best thing about this dish is that it is so cheap and light that you often see gupchup eating competitions on your streets. Without a doubt, it is everyone’s favourite!
Dahi vada-Aloo dum
Yet another popular street food that we see after gupchup in Odisha, is Dahi vada and Aloo dum. Go out at even 5 in the morning and you can see thela walas with their big pots of dahi vada and smaller pots filled with aloo dum. While everywhere else, dahi vada and aloo dum are considered to be two separate dishes, Odisha offers a distinctive blend of the both. The relishing taste of dahi vadas carefully neutralises the spiciness of aloo dum, giving the taste that every Odia craves for. Also famous as the ‘Vada Pav’ of Cuttack, this dish has surely paved its way into people’s hearts and everyday lives.
Chakuli Pitha is a renowned dish from Odisha that is quite like a Dosa, yet different. It is prepared using a batter made with equal portions of lentils (Urad Dal) and rice (soaked, ground and fermented for at least 5 hours). Even black lentils (skinless) are used instead of the Urad Dal at times. The batter is spread on a griddle or pan in a circular shape and cooked on both sides using some mustard oil. Chakuli Pitha is softer than that of a Dosa and is comparatively thicker as well. This gluten-free delicacy tastes really well with Aloo Bhuja, Ghugni or jaggery.
Kora Khai is a sweet dish item. It is immensely popular as a form of ‘Prashad’ (holy offering) in temples, especially to Lord Jagannath. There are very few ingredients used to prepare Kora Khai. It is basically a mixture of 4 ingredients that are Khai, coconut, jaggery (or sugar) and cardamom. Compared to other sweets, it’s a bit more hard and chewy. However, that does not mess up with its uniquely delicious taste. It’s a flavourful delight that gives freshness from the coconuts and crunch from the caramelized Khai (fried paddy). It is very popular in Bhubaneswar.
Mudhi is puffed rice, and Mansa means meat. Mudhi Mansa is a classic, traditional dish that is loved by the people of Odisha. It’s goat’s meat that is marinated in oil and a whole lot of spices. The meat is then added to a gravy made with tomatoes, onions and selected spices. Served hot with crunchy Mudhi or puffed rice; garnished with chopped onions, tomatoes and fresh coriander leaves. It is an interesting combination that is quite preferred, especially by the people of Bhubaneswar.
A crisp, cracking and worth cherishing sweet dish, Khaja. It’s a burst of flavour and texture, with very few ingredients, and a whole lot of techniques. There’s just refined flour, clarified butter, sugar, water, cardamom and rose water (optional). The dough is kneaded using flour and ghee, to prepare thin tortillas. These tortillas are then layered one above the other, with the help of ghee and dry flour. Around 6 layers are formed before rolling them and cutting into pieces. A bit of flattening from the sides, and they get into deep-frying until golden. Coated in flavoured sugar syrup at the end, and the layered, crunchy goodness is ready to relish!
Gajja is a classic, traditional sweet from Odisha that has multiple variants. Chhena Gajja, Khasta Gajja, Khira Gaja and some others that differ through their style of preparation (boiled dry or fried sugary syrup ones). Most of their names are based on the core ingredient of the respective recipes. The most popular version is the little square-shaped pieces of Chhena (crumbled curd cheese) Gajja that are fried and soaked in sugar syrup for about an hour, for them to absorb the sweetness.
The Rasoaolla from Odisha is super popular for all the right reasons, and more! It has been a hot topic considering its battle of origin with Bengal. With its mouth-melting texture and divine flavour, this sweet dish is bound to win hearts in every part of the world! The white goodness dipped in sugar syrup makes it one of the best desserts. The delicate softness of the chhena and the perfect balance of sweetness makes it a wonderful indulgence. One simply cannot afford to miss this delight! Odisha Rasogolla, Khira Mohana has been served as bhog in the Jagannath Temple, in Puri.
So which of these food of Odisha – 8 dishes items do you like the most? Tell us in the comments below.