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Punjabi Cuisine

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Punjab - Cooking and Food Edit

Overview of Punjabi Cuisine HistoryEdit

Punjabi Cuisine tends to be the dominant cuisine throughout the country. In a manner of speaking, Punjabi cuisine is mainstream cuisine. Punjabi cuisine is largely consumed in most ceremonies. At weddings, birthday celebrations, etc. it is common to find a biryani or a qorma present. No matter where these dishes originated from, within the boundaries of Pakistan, they are essentially considered to be Punjabi.

It is true to say that Punjabi cuisine is densely influenced by Indian cuisine. This is because of the fact that the province of Punjab stretches out of Pakistan and into the Indian territory as well. Therefore, there is distinct geographical and cultural similarity between the Indian Punjab and Pakistan Punjab. Their traditions that are reflected in things like cuisine are clearly visible.

Observing the spices that are used in popular dishes, it can be said that the link between the two sides of Punjab is reinforced. For instance, if you take a dish such as haleem or biryani, you will find that almost the same ingredients are used. The spices and salt tends to be the same, and the lentils as well. However, you would encounter differences as well. These are due to the religions practiced in these two separate lands. In Indian foods, you might encounter the use of food that is not acceptable under Islamic principles. Food such as pork would certainly be omitted from Punjabi as well as Pakistani dishes at large.

Not only will you encounter differences in the foods consumed between the two regions, you will also see that traditional functions each has their own unique characteristics. These are reflected in weddings, birth ceremonies, etc. These are of course natural differences because the Pakistani side has been strongly influenced by Islamic teachings. So, in their cooking and eating as well, we can see reflections of these teachings. With Punjabi food being the dominant cuisine in Pakistan, it serves as a good example of the differences between the Indian side and the Pakistani side.


The varieties of foods available in Pakistan are many. In the Punjab alone there are indeed many, and many of these owe their presence to history. Yes, this is true to say because of the pre-partition Indian influence. In addition to the influence that was bound to be present, the occupation of the British colonists also caused several dishes from other parts of India to come to what is now Pakistan. Therefore, there is a great mixture in Punjab.

Punjab is famous for pallows, biryani, qorma, haleem, nihari, various types of lentils and pulses. In addition to these, there are also several kinds of curries that are common. Punjabi food tends to be heavy because of the fact that they use the richest spices and other ingredients. Ghee is very important in bringing out the best taste possible in Punjabi cuisine. Ghee is believed to be a healthy food substance used in cooking, which is perhaps why you would that the people here are generally healthier and have more body mass than people living in other parts of the country. However, this is not to understate the fact that people in areas like Baluchistan, as they are also big-made.

Aside from the spices in Punjabi cuisine, there is one important matter to consider, and that is the use of meats. Punjabi cuisine only uses halal meats. Meat. Such as pork, is certainly not permitted. However, you will be able to commonly consume beef, mutton and chicken in Punjabi cuisine. Each style of cooking is also important in this regard because it is the style of cooking that brings out different flavors. For example, some cuisine requires you to cook your food on coal. It is thought that coal causes a gentle flame, and the food gets cooked uniformly, and therefore improves the taste.

Indian Food Glossary Edit

Finding the ingredients for an Punjabi 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.

Preparation Methods for Punjabi Cooking Edit

Preparing foods is an important step in any form of cooking. This is because preparation methods greatly influence the end result. The taste may greatly depend on the method employed in cooking. In Punjabi cooking, it is commonly known that there are particular steps necessary to bring out the best test. One of these steps includes marinating meats. When meats are marinated or seasoned they tend to make the meat much easier to cook. Marinating is commonly done using tamarind water or even lemon. The meat gets tenderized, and the taste improves as well.

Aside from marinating the meat to cook, adding spices in at the correct tine is also very important to bringing out the best taste. Some dishes require you to add all the spices in at once, while others require you to add the spices in piece by piece. Let us take the preparation of biryani for example. In order to cook this dish, the rice is boiled separately, and the meat and spices are cooked separately. Finally, at the end of the process they are added, and cooked.

In addition to the starting and intermediate methods of cooking employed in Punjabi cuisine, there are other important steps. One of these is the garnishing. In several Punjabi foods, it is known that without garnishing the food cannot be eaten and enjoyed. In Haleem for instance, the taste will not emerge, as it should if you do not brown finely sliced onions. In biryani, you might need top garnish the food with finely chopped coriander leaves. Also, at the end of cooking lentils, you might need to add browned garlic or onions.

Whatever method is employed to end the cooking process in Punjabi cuisine, it certainly should be followed to bring out the best taste. In addition to the ending process, other cooking preparation methods should also be adhered to.

Special Equipment for Punjabi Cooking Edit

In order to cook Punjabi foods, you have to have all the necessary know-how as well as the utensils. If you do not have the right kinds of equipment to cook Punjabi foods, cooking will become problematic.

One of the utensils used in cooking Punjabi foods is a deep boiling vessel for boiling rice and other foods. It is particularly known that the utensil used for boiling rice should not be used for anything else. Let’s say you start boiling curries in that same utensil you use for boiling. What will happen is the taste of your rice will not be the same, and it is possible that oily residue will be left in the rice utensil. Removing the oily substances is not a problem, but who wants to start cleaning out oily substances in the middle of cooking. Also, some experts believe that leaving the rice utensil to be used only for cooking rice is important because of the residue that rice leaves in it. It is thought that the rice as well as the salt used in boiling is important for the taste.

Aside from important utensils such as the rice boiler, there are the drainers to be used. The rice needs to be drained well for better graininess. For cooking biryani, this is an important apparatus.

Strainers, drainers and large spoons are also important to use in cooking Punjabi food. Large spoons are very important because there are often large quantities of curry that you need to stir. Strainer spoons are also handy in this regard. These are spoons that are porous, and allow you to collect the solid portions of a curry without scooping up the liquid. This is especially useful when separating the solid portions from the liquid one.

Another important cooking apparatus to use is the tawa. This is used for frying or cooking chapatti or parhatta. These are two integral meal portions in Punjabi cuisine, and only a tawa will suffice as a cooking apparatus.

Punjabi Food Traditions and Festivals Edit

Traditions in Punjab are normally accompanied by good eating. Food is an important part of Punjabi tradition. Therefore, it is very common to have good food associated with Punjabi festivals. Festivals like Bassant in particular allows all the best Punjabi dishes to come to your table. In the markets as well you will find a large variety of Punjabi food around at this time of the year.

Bassant is a festival that marks the onset of spring. It is a brightly colored festival, with yellow as a symbolic color of harvest. This festival has a range of Punjabi foods like the main course ones such as biryani, but the lighter and excitable ones like jalaibees and pakoras are also common. A number of sweet drinks are quite common as well at this time of the year. These are refreshing and symbolize the joy during the season.

Aside from the festivals like bassant, Punjabi food traditions include the all-important heavy main courses at weddings. These might include heavy rice dishes and curries as well. These are accompanied with salads and other side dishes as well.

Commonly, it can be said that heavy main course meals are present at any big ceremony. Biryani being the most common has even left popular phrases among people. For example, when people say: “When are you going to treat us to rice?”, it actually means that they are asking whey you are getting married. This is because of the fact that rice is so common at any ceremony. Whether it is in the form of biryani or in the form of a pallao, it will be present. However, this is not to say that there are no foods that need chapatti or paratha. There is usually a choice among these types of food. However, primarily, the rice-based dishes will be present for sure at a Punjabi Festival.

People in Punjabi Food Edit

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