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Pakistan - Cooking and Food
Overview of Pakistani Cuisine History
The Indo-Pak subcontinent region has been rich in all of its traditions and customs since time immemorial. The current Pakistani cuisine is traditional is some of its aspects, however, due to the Mughal rule in the subcontinent and then finally the colonization of the British, many of the traditions which of course included the cuisine changed. A rather fascinating aspect of the Pakistani cuisine is that it is not much different from the Indian cuisine. Mostly the same herbs, spices etc are used in both the types of the cuisines. Nevertheless, since almost the entire Pakistani population is constituted by Muslims, and in Islam eating halal food is obligatory, and Pork is banned, you will not find any recipe in the cuisine of Pakistan which does not use halal meat or use Pork meat. Moreover, in the beverage category, you will find many drinks that are traditional to the core, but all of them will be non-alcoholic. The Pakistani cuisine is similar to that of its neighbors: Afghanistan and Iran too. You will find a variety of different foods in the cuisine of Pakistan due to the historical invasions and partition of the Indo-Pak subcontinent in 1947. The main sub-cuisines in the cuisine of Pakistan are the: Mughlai Cuisine, Punjabi Cuisine, Sindhi Cuisine, Balochi Cuisine and the North Western Cuisine. Indeed the cuisine of Pakistan is one of the most diverse, traditional and culturally oriented cuisines found world over.
The CUISINE of Pakistan is just as diverse and full of abundant variety as are the people of Pakistan. The legacy of the Muslim rule in South Asia has enabled the Pakistani cuisine to be greatly influenced by its roots of Afghan-Turkic-Iranian roots. Most of the recipes to the cuisine of Pakistan are more or less like the Indian cuisine. The sub regional cuisine within Pakistan plays a huge part in the diversity of the Pakistani cuisine. This is specifically true for the Punjabis and the Sindhi’s in Pakistan. The Pakistani Pushtuns and Balochis have maintained their traditional cuisine similar to that of Pakistan’s western neighbors. In a rather general context, the Pakistani cuisine is a combination of its western (Afghan-Iranian) and eastern (Indian) neighbors. Meat constitutes as being a major diet in the Pakistani cuisine, on the other hand vegetables, pulses and beans are just as important. Wheat and rice are the main staple diet in the Pakistani cuisine. The spices used in the cuisine normally range from being very spicy, hot and mild. Most of the recipes that you will find in the cuisine of Pakistan will be normally spicy. Nonetheless, the cuisine of Pakistan is truly unique and traditionally preferred over other continental cuisines in Pakistan, by the foreigners and the Pakistani’s alike.
By Geographic Area and Style:
Finding the ingredients for an Pakistani Recipe is not so easy when you do not know the names of the ingredients. Take time to make a list of ingredients and the name they may be found under at the Local Markets.
- Check out the Pakistani Food Glossary
Preparation Methods for Pakistani Cooking
As the sub-continent is so vast, it is not surprising to notice that the preparation methods of cooking the Pakistani cuisine will differ from region to region. Although the preparing a Pakistani meal is not difficult, yet it requires a little tact. For instance, there are various ways of preparing the spices that you will be using in your cuisine. Whole spices in the cuisine of Pakistan are mostly dry-roasted. The spices can vary in thickness as well as hardness and it depends on which meal you are preparing to either use the crushed or ground up spices for use in a recipe. Frying spices is easy, and frying spices greatly depends on which kind of spice you are frying first, for instance, the mustard seeds will take you longer to fry than coriander, therefore always fry the spices which might be more time consuming than the softer spices. The meat dishes found in the cuisine of Pakistan are commonly first marinated in yogurt and spices and then cooked very slowly in the marinade. The meat dishes in the cuisine of Pakistan are quite popular as are the vegetarian dishes.
Special Equipment for Pakistani Cooking
There are very few ‘special’ utensils and equipment needed for preparing your meal from the cuisine of Pakistan. Non-stick pots and pans are useful and are found in most equipped kitchens, therefore you might not need to go and buy new ones if you have them already. If you are a creative cook and want to prepare your Pakistani meal in the true traditional Pakistani style then it will not be a bad idea to invest into getting a ‘Tawa’. The traditional Pakistani breads such as chapattis, parathas and rotis are all made using the tawa. Karahi is another deep frying pot which looks quite like a Chinese wok but it is heavier and deeper than the former. The karahi makes a great alternative for ordinary deep frying recipes. Commonly the meat dishes are prepared in the karahi. Other than the traditional Pakistani tawa and karahi, spice grinders, food processors or electric blenders are always useful to make your cooking easy and joyful. Obtaining a few metal skewers for meat and vegetable threading is also a handy utensil.
Pakistani Food Traditions and Festivals
Pakistan is rich not only in its cuisine but also in its food traditions and festivals. Pakistani’s are genuinely lovers of food. They simply need an occasion to celebrate and with each celebration follows a grand feast. Pakistani celebrations commence as soon as a child is born. To commemorate this occasion sweets from the traditional Pakistani cuisine are distributed among all present on the occasion. The Pakistani weddings are grand in every form of the word. There is a lot of festivity on weddings, every region within Pakistan has a different way of celebrating weddings, but all of them have one thing in common, which is of course the serving of grand traditional food from the Pakistani cuisine. Pakistani’s take great pleasure in celebrating the traditional way. Moreover, if you encounter a Pakistani, he or she will be delighted to simply give you a taste of Pakistan’s authentic cuisine. Serving guests at gatherings with scrumptious delights and meals is another traditional custom in Pakistan.
People in Pakistani Food
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