Nepal is rich in culture and history, a small nation tucked between two huge neighboring countries. Likewise, all these diverse traditions are reflected in the local cuisines you can find in different ethnic groups.
Though yes, most local food items are inspired by Tibetan and Indian influences. However, all of these items have a unique taste and flavor with Century Foods. Also, this cultural diversity gives ample space to the variety of local Nepalese cuisines.
Among all the dishes, Dal Bhaat Tarkari (pulse, rice, and curry) is a common everyday dish in every Nepalese household. These dishes are usually for a heavy and hearty meal. You can sometimes eat these local dishes alongside a serving of spicy pickle, which can be either fermented or fresh. You can also have it alongside fresh lemons or even green chilies.
If you are trying for a local food hunt and do not know where to start, this list provides you with many options. For sure, one will find a lot of food to try here.
Famous Local Foods You Can Find In Nepal
Due to the local Nepalese cuisine varieties, most travelers get confused and do not explore dishes except “Dal Bhaat Tarkari.” However, dive into the multiple local types with dramatic tingling tastes and flavors.
Below are the top picks of the famous local food items you can find across Nepal.
Kheer: Famous Local Foods of Nepal
Among many local dishes made from rice, Kheer is one of the most flavorful rice with a sweet taste. It is a type of wet pudding, and locals often prepare it on special occasions.
Locals make this dish out of rice in boiling milk and sugar. Furthermore, they also add several dry fruits, such as coconut, cardamom, raisins, saffron, cashews, pistachios, almonds, and other nuts.
Likewise, they also add cardamoms and cloves for intense aromas. Many also serve this dish as a dessert, while some eat it as a whole dish.
This dish is one of the delicacies in the Tharu culture, and locals make it out of mud-water snails. Often, the locals serve this dish with linseed soups and local spices.
You can eat this dish by sucking the snail from its shell, which is quite high in protein. You can find these snails in streams and paddy fields of the Terai region. Moving on, locals wash and boil these snails before preparing them.
Inspired by Tibetan cuisine, Laphing has been integral to the local Nepalese food items. Here, the locals make this dish with cold noodles out of starch. You can extract the starch from mung bean, potatoes, or wheat flour.
Likewise, this dish is covered in a jelly-like substance on a mixture of vinegar, dried chilies, and soy sauce. These slippery textures have no taste alone, but they have a pack of spices added to them, bringing out their flavor and aroma.
Well, you can usually eat this dish as a light snack, and it comes in two different styles; dry and with soup.
One of the widely enjoyed local dishes is sukuti, which is often the best side eatery while drinking. This dish is dried meat that origins from the Himalayas region of the nation. Here, sukuti is a spicy dish with a big chunk of meat.
Not to mention, this is a staple dish among the Gurung and Limbu communities. Also, depending on the taste, you can eat and serve sukuti in multiple ways. One of the most popular methods is to fry or grill them.
You can make this unique dish from several meat varieties, like lambs, goats, and buffaloes. Initially, you slice and marinate these meat chunks with several spices. Some spices include cumin, turmeric, black pepper, coriander, chili, ginger, garlic, and onion paste.
One of the traditional Nepalese-styled roasted meat, Sekuwa is a mouthwatering dish. This dish consists of grilled meat on a natural Fire, and the heart is often set to raw.
These meat chunks are skewered lamb, chicken, pork, or goat meat mixed with herbs and spices. Additionally, you can enjoy this dish with baji (pounded rice) and achar (tomato pickle).
Aloo Tama is a local soup dish with fermented bamboo shoots, potatoes, and black-eyed peas. It is one of the tasty curry recipes. This soup gives a savory taste and rich aroma.
This soup has a strong sour taste and is later blended with spices. At first, they add simply cooked potatoes and then add the fried bamboo to the soup.
Yomari is one of the top delicacies in the Newari community, and you can make it with steamed rice. Well, this dish is a key part of the community and holds symbolic representations to the locals.
Moving on, this dish is triangular with rice covering and fillings of either a sweet molasses mixture or a coconut one.
Some Other Nepali Local Foods To Try
- Bhatmaas – Nepali name for fried black soybeans
- Khatte (roasted rice)
- Bhatmaas sadheko – snacks/salsa made from soybean
- Bhuja or murai – Puffed rice
- Khajuri – oil-fried cookies
- Sukkha Roti (Tortilla)
- Fulaura – Fried black lentil balls
- Gilo roti (flour pancakes)
- Dal puri
- Dhido gundruk
Added Local Sweetness To The Nepalese Dish
The local Nepalese dishes also come with a side of a variety of sweetness. There are multiple choices of desserts that you can venture into after a hearty meal.
Below are some of the top choices of Nepalese local dessert items we have mentioned.
- Lakhamari (traditional Newari sweets made of flour, sugar, butter, and other ingredients)
- Juju Dhau (creamy yogurt)
- Jerry (deep-frying maida flour)
- Til ko laddu (a spherical candy made with flour, ghee, and sugar)
- kulfi (frozen dairy made by boiling milk, sugar, and other flavors)
- Khuwa barfi (milk-based sweet topped with pistachio)
- Rasbari (Small milk balls usually soaked in a sugary syrup)
- Pustakari (candy made from molasses)
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