The Cuisine : Impact of Portugese Cuisine
Famous Delicacies : Seafood, Fish Curry and Rice
Most Exotic Dish : Pork Vindaloo
Munching Delight : Rissois, Potato Bhajis
A Complete Goa Thali
|Best Dishes :
|Sorpotel, Rissois, Sorpotel, Xhacuti.
|Cuisine Exotica :
|Chouricos ( Pork Sausage), Meats, 'galinha piri-piri (Grilled Dish).
|Non Veg Dishes :
|Fishes like Pomfret, Sharks, Tunas, Mackerels, Lobsters. Dishes made from of Chicken and Pork.
|Veg Dishes :
|Mushroom Tondak, Khatkhatem and Foogath and chutneys such as Sushelle and Karathiacho Kuval.
|Feasts for all Occasions :
|Ambot tik (Sour Curry), Caldeirada (Fish Flavored with Wine), Cabidela (Rich Spicy pork Dish), Sorpotel ( pork with Vinegar).
|Famous Drinks :
|Cashew Feni, Urak, Coconut Feni.
|Not To Be Missed :
|The most popular breads amongst the goans is Sannas, steamed rolls made of rice flour, ground coconut and coconut toddy.
|Sweet Dishes :
|Bebinca, Dodol, Doce, Pinagre.
|Where to Eat :
Shiv Sagar, Kamat's and Rajdhani (Panaji), Hotel
Vrindavan, Moon Light (Mapusa), Annapurna Restaurant,
Meghdoot (Vasco Da Gama), Fat Willy's Beach Shack,
Dropadi (Canacona), Udupi Restaurants (Ponda).
For Non Vegetarian George Bar and Restaurant, Chicky Chocky, Sahara Restaurant, Delhi Darbar Restaurant (Panaji), Lymaur's, Royal Durbar, Anant Ashram (Vasco Da Gama), Casa Menino, Raissa's Oriental Spice, Cafe Tato, Nostalgia (Margao), Babaji, Ruchira Restaurant, Bawarchi (Mapusa), Atithi, Avhiksha Palace, Atish, Ganesh Residency (Ponda), Dersy Bar and Restaurant, Simrose Restaurant, Betty's Place, Silver Star Bar and Restaurant (Canacona).
Bakeries Cafe Central, Bread and More (Panaji), Simonia Bakery, St. Francis Bakery, Cafe Aurora (Mapusa), National Bakery, Jila Bakery (Margao), Gomes Bakery, Monginis Cake Shop, Sanman Sweets (Vasco Da Gama).
Imagine a cuisine that carries an nonpareil aroma of Portugal, covered with exotic Indian spices and soaked in the inescapable katzenjammer of Goa's favourite drink, fenny! In a search of brilliant culinary art, Goa, recolonised Portuguese taste buds. Any visit to this palm-fringed patch of sand is a spicy experience perhaps unmatched along the stretched shoreline up till Kerala in the south, outrunning even the magical Mughal kitchens of the north. And why not? The wine-and-garlic vinho d' alhos is reincarnated in spices, the original Portuguese chourico do reino is recognisable today only by its shape, and instead of from Iberian wine, Goa today allures the whole world with its fermented cashew apple juice, fenny. Indeed a cuisine that carries history, culture and myriad influences by people from several continents, Goa is an epicurean delight for every vacationer in every season!
The best time to catch a meal in Goa is a hard decision. At every corner and at any moment, you might feel like filling your appetite. Dieting is merely a fantasy in this sea-kissed land. Start your day with a heavy 'Chourisso' sausage with fresh pao and fried egg breakfast at Longuinhos. Go for the glorious 'Bebinca' made with dozens of eggs with 'squid masala' at O' Coqueiro in lunch, or 'Sorpotel' and 'Sannas' at Nostalgia for dinner. The taste is different and the experience is at extremes. With a panoptic array of pork curries and sea food delicacies, the Goan cuisine takes its own time to make you senseless with its mellow drink feni.
The culinary mania starts itself in April with the ripening of the aphrodisiac alphonso mango, the welcome whiffs of its mouth-watering aroma bewitching every holidayer. In June, the rains come, and the next three months have fishing boats decorating deserted beaches. Go to Goa in the monsoon and all you'll get in the holy name of sea food is prawn balchao and dried Bombay Duck. But a holiday in this wet season surely shines the other side of the coin, the lesser known gems of Goan kitchen. Try out the famous 'souraca', a concoction of coconut milk, garlic, chillies, onions, tamarind and a few spices, all boiled together to make a delicious gravy that goes heavenly with the red rice of Konkan. If you plan to rejoice your holiday in Goa during the monsoons, make it memorable with 'Khatkhate, seasoned with dry prawns, 'Alsande', a rich curry of black-eyed peas, and 'Chowli' , cooked with tender jackfruit seeds. By the time, the rains fill the quarters under the patronage of Sao Joao, the god of rain, you will be handed bottles of homemade feni to turn on your holidays. Indeed every drop of rain gifts you one yummy taste to enjoy in Goa.
Plan a holiday trip during the Christmas-New Year break to taste the best of Goan cuisine, though it might cost you an arm and a leg to savour them. Baby sharks find their way into your plates as 'Solantulem', or 'Ambot-tik', made with petals of tart 'Kokum solam'. Known to be a cooling agent and honoured for its medicinal value, the red-coloured fruit of 'Kokum' is the real king of Goan cuisines. Taste the seasonal delicacy, oyster breaded and lightly fried 'Xinanio' which is often out of the menu late in January. During this time you can also have the pleasure to savour the exquisite 'Bangada' (mackerel), pomfret and the most prized fish of Goa, the 'Isvonn' or the king fish, stuffed with a spicy sour 'Recheado' masala. Wow, it's delicious! Apart from the hallmark rich red 'Nisteachi codi', these go into a range of fish curries, all unique, all soured with Goa's 'Bimbli', Ambade or Kokum berries. Remember to relish the 'Zawb' or mussel curry before you step out of the restaurant for an afternoon siesta.
Sea Food at Goa
While your friends tiol in fields and offices, you can wake up from a wonderful siesta for a tea-time soiree. In the long un-broken stretch of the Konkan coast, nowhere can you find such a wide range of sweets that Goa offers to doll up your evening. Offering an impeccable blend of European extravagance and simplicity of Konkan cooking, the sweetmeats of Goa are a must try for every holidayer. Although, the desserts are kept simple in Konkan, it takes a lot of effort to create those culinary magic. Leave the taste, you will be amazed to know that many of Goa's most popular cakes, including the rich 'Bebinca', were developed in Goa's convents and monastries, where time was never in short supply. With the same core ingredients of rice flour, coconut milk, palm jaggery, semolina and eggs, a formidable array of sweets and savouries excite the Goan from an afternoon's rest. And so it will do to you. Try out some delicate rose-de-coc waffles with 'Kul-kuls', curls of fried, sweeetened dough and you can't forget the taste throughout your life.
The Portuguese planted the first cashew tree in Goa in the 1500s. Immediately, the Goans distilled cashew to make the famous feni. Holding the bottle and beholding the content is itself a curious activity, leave apart the taste. The Big Boss and Godfather are among Goa's most popular feni brands, packaged in Goan tradition and humour. The Serenade feni bottle is a must buy because of its violin shape, while the Dom Pedro is the best gift because of its coconut shape! The highway of many a Konkani conversation, feni is a deceptive intoxicant, taking its own time to transit you to a land of euphoria, and also makes a great marinade, adding a mellow touch to Goa's hot pork curries and their chefs.
Across the Mandovi and Zuari Rivers, in Goa's Hindu heartland, the cuisine is quite similar to that of the Maharashtrians, nullifying the trespass of vinegar into its cooking pots. Touring the spice plantations of Ponda would give you one of the best platters of Goan cuisine, and that too an unforgettable one! Relish a grand welcome at the Sahakari Spice Farms with a cup of lemon grass tea and a stroll through fragrant plantations where fat pods of vanilla hang off delicate orchid stems; and cinnamon and clove plants line pathways leading to thick cashew groves. A post-tour lunch from fresh ingredients - fried fish, smooth prawn curry poured over fragrant rice, 'bhajis' and tangy lime pickle - will definitely make you feel special. While in Calangute, don't miss the Le Restaurant Francais, a French fusion hub of exquisite Goan food. Try out the French seafood thali of calamari fritti, prawns and crab cakes with a side dressing of blue cheese. Mark the finale with crème de la crème Hershey's cocoa butter presented on a bed of vanilla sauce.
Nothing symbolises Goan cuisine more than its exquisite taste. Rich, spicy and drenched in the sweetness of feni, a mere thought of Konkan delicacies surely carts every traveller to a different world. Plan a holiday trip anytime and everytime you will enter a restaurant or even a shack, you will have a different delicacy decorated in your plate. So what are you waiting for? Splurge on...
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