Interest for food is the result of the genes that I have got through inheritance. Especially when you grow up among people who are crazy food lovers, you automatically learn to love foods. The place where I was born, Assam, is famous for one horned rhino, tea, and crude oil. But a lesser known fact is that it’s also very rich in foods. Although it falls in North-Eastern part of India where the food culture is generally Mongolian in nature, surprisingly Assamese foods have its own identity and uniqueness. It has some similarities with Bengali cuisines but it stands tall and apart due to its strong indigenous nature.
The Assamese Year is full of celebrations coming in the form of traditions. And if someone deeply sees, all are somehow connected to foods.The famous three Bihus are celebrated in January, April, and October. Especially, the first two are not only a cultural delight but also a celebration of foods.The famous Laddu (made of coconut extract/black sesame mixed with liquid sugar or jaggery). The Peetha (Rice cake filled with coconut extract or sesame mixed with sugar or jaggery). It undoubtedly brings joy to your eyes and tongue when offered with a hot cup of famous Assamese tea. And there are so many other dishes to offer from sweet to salty from snacks to desserts one can’t deny. These are traditional Assamese foods and are purely vegetarian in nature.
THE NON-VEG MENU: ASSAMESE WAY
Assamese menu has a lot to offer for the non-vegetarian food lovers as well. Here, in Assamese society, three kinds of meats are very popular, duck, mutton, and pigeon meats. The third one is the tastiest when at the same time being unique and rare. I have visited several places in India but have never found pigeon meat in any menu.
The Assamese cooking style is almost similar to the other parts of India. The use of spices and herbs of Ayurvedic significance proves the charisma of Unity in Diversity one more time. Again, if you are a fish lover, I can assure you that you are just in the right place. The mighty river Brahmaputra that flows through the state and about dozens of small rivers are the home to hundreds of species of fishes. Some are common but many are unique and indigenous. From my childhood days, I have seen, there are few fish dishes which are only cooked and served in this part of the world, like fish cooked with Elephant Apple (a rich source of Vitamin C), fish cooked with star fruit, and freshwater fish barbecued in banana leaves. These are so unique recipes, I would say a must-have for a fish lover.
Lastly, for me, food is a story of never-ending happiness. And the journey goes on with me and after me as well. It is impossible for me to include and mention all the dishes here. For that, you need to visit the place. So, next time when you plan a vacation with your family or friends, keep these things in mind.