Dum Aloo- This is perhaps the most delicious kind of potato you’ll ever meet. Steamed to soft, creamy goodness and fried in hot mustard oil, baby potatoes are then simmered overnight in a gravy of yogurt, whole red chili peppers and herbs. Liberally spiced with fennel seeds, this particular dish is often considered a celebratory recipe in most Kashmiri households.
Nadru Yakhni- Kashmiris are an experimental people. And nothing proves it better than Nadru Yakhni. Nadru mean lotus stem. Typically, a Yakhni is a lamb preparation made with yogurt and traditional whole spices. Adding lotus stem to the recipe instead of lamb is a unique vegetarian appropriation of an otherwise meaty delight.
Kashmiri Pulao- Kashmiris don’t do Biryani. As strange as that is, not all South Asian Muslim cultures are about Biryani. Heavily influenced by the Pandit style of cooking and the local ingredients available in the valley, Kashmiri Pulao is no less than any Biryani. Light, fluffy rice is cooked with saffron, dry fruit and vegetables. Garnished with fresh fruit like pomegranate and apple, this dish offers a combination of sweet, spicy and savory; with the proportions of each aftertaste varying in every bite. Team this up with mint raita (Minty yogurt sauce) or have this just like it is. You will be hooked.
Rogan Josh- No discussion about Kashmiri cuisine can ever be complete without talking about Rogan Josh. A class unto itself, Rogan Josh gets its name from two words; Rogan which means oil/fat and Josh which means passion (or signifies the red color of the dish). Rogan Josh is lamb cooked in hot oil, with a heavy focus on red chili peppers. A bunch of other spices are also used, with nutmeg and cinnamon contributing the most to the sweet aftertaste of this fiery preparation. Enjoy this with steamed rice for a highly satisfying meal.
Fraash Bean Curry- Fraash Bean is a local, selective and more delicious cousin of Razma (or Rajma, as the Punjabis call it). Fraash Bean can be dried and stored like other grains or they can be cooked fresh. Both variations have their strengths and distinct flavors. However, since Kashmir is never short on the fresh beans, the most typically traditional preparation utilizes fresh beans. Teamed up with steamed rice, Fraash Bean curry is best enjoyed on a lazy Sunday afternoon.