Breakfast is an important meal in India it is more of an emotional need. The variety of breakfast items one can find in India, I am yet to see in another country. Every state that I have been to and I have been to around 20 states and 3 Union territories has bowled me over with the variety of food and the gastronomic experience that India provides. This is by no means an exhaustive list but features 10 unique breakfast dishes that should definitely make way into your stomach.
Poha is a very humble dish and simple to make but only the best cooks can make poha the gastronomic wonder that it is. Poha is prepared with flattened rice, lemon, onion and green chilies. This humble dish is prepared and favored across the states of Maharashtra in the form of Kanda poha, Madhya Pradesh and Gujrat. Most states in India have a form of flattened rice recipe but poha with a topping of namkeen is my favorite.
Credit – By Raxio00 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons
Oh man this one I think has ode’s written for it. The vada pav what students, workers and well anyone who can afford a 10 Rs can have for breakfast with tea. Take a bite, nip a green chilli and take a sip with tea. Vada pav ofcourse is very Maharashtrian and possibly embodies the spirit of Maharashtra humble but fiery.
Paratha With Butter
Paratha with butter is most suited for the tough terrain and the cold in North India, a popular Punjabi breakfast item. A paratha is quite versatile as one can stuff it with various stuffings like potato, onion, cheese or plain with different types of flour. A big (no make that ginormous) dollop of butter and you are set for the day! I have heard ‘rumors’ that this breakfast is then followed down with a lassi, that makes for some serious appetite.
Puttu With Kadala
Puttu kadala is from Kerala and though many others who are not from the state underestimate the taste of this healthy steamed and down to earth recipe. There are Keralites who will miss it and create makeshift puttu vessels just so that they can make their favorite breakfast or add it to the zoo advertisement that they have been commissioned to create.
Credits – By Simile Krishnakumar (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons
Kothu Paratha is from Tamil Nadu and quite popular in Sri Lanka as well. Kothu paratha takes care of left over paratha from the previous night and gives it a make over so terrific that it catapults itself in the breakfast runway as a star.
Pongal happens to be my staple go to at any Sarvana Bhavan or Adayar Ananda Bhavan this Tamil beauty is rich as well as simple. An Italian friend once likened it to risotto. Pongal comes in sweet and savory and I recommend both depending on your mood. The dish is a mainstay in the Tamil New Year festivities of pongal. They named their New Year after this dish, need I say more?
Momos with Thukpa
Momos and thukpas have quickly become mainstream in the rest of India which has a migrant North eastern population. Momos for breakfast is quite filling and soul satisfying I must say. North east has many more such unknown gems that should have their rightful place.
Fafada and Jalebi
This is a very weird combination for breakfast for a south Indian but try it with an open mind. It is definitely worth it but then again I am sucker for Gujrati food. This combination is popular on street corners in Gujrat along with dhoklas.
Credits – By Sarika 1410 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons
Kachori with Aloo
Very popular in U.P and a few other northern states. Kachori as a breakfast dish has not yet reached mainstream but it is quite an interesting option any way.
Screw pine leaves or kedige is used as mould for the idli batter to give it a distinct taste. Mude idli is an authentic Kanadiga breakfast which is not very common today. Kamat Lokaruchi on Mysore road near Bangalore is where you can sample this rustic beauty.
Pictures Credits – Razor Rasu, Traveling Noodles and Wikicommons where credited.