Food has become an imperative catalyst in the process of cultural exchange. India is known for several of its mysticisms, one among them being known as a utopia of food. Facts state that India has more than 31 cuisines, some of which are still undiscovered. Mahati Salike talks to Khadija Kaukawala about one such offbeat Indian cuisine–The Bohra Thali and reviews the vegetarian meal.
The Bohra thali is an originated Muslim cuisine, which serves several delectable and piquant vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes. The term ‘Bohra’ is originally derived from the Gujarati term ‘vohrvu’ or ‘vyavahar’, which means ‘to trade.’ Originally from Iran, the Bohra Muslims are now spread all over the world, bringing with them their diverse and rich culture.
This authentic thali begins with a pinch of salt.
What’s more? Breaking the commonplace pattern of eating food, this thali is compelling as it begins with a dessert. As per the Bohra lilt, savoury foods are called ‘Kharaa’ and the sweet dishes are called the ‘Mithaas’.
Unlike the regular walk-in restaurants and cafes, Khadija Kaukawala offers pre-booked and customised meals to her customers. Located in Thirumalgerry, she operates from her home. She says “We have moved to Hyderabad 4 years ago with the goal of acquainting people with our traditional cuisine and its delicacies.” Her menu offers 2 meals, which are a combination of various dishes – vegetarian and non-vegetarian thali.
The Vegetarian Thali
The Bohra meal is ceremoniously consumed sitting down on the floor. For this sit-down supper, a stainless-steel round frame called a ‘Tarana’ serves as an improvised dining area. The ‘Tarana’ is topped with a spherical steel plate large suited for four people.
The meal typically begins with a welcome drink called the ‘Gol Sharbath’ that constitutes ingredients like jaggery, sabja seeds, lime, and basil. The drink is subtle on your palate and of course, tastes delicious. This is followed by a kulfi loaded with malai. Promising divine taste, next comes Dal Samosa accompanied with a side of mint chutney and a mayonnaise dip. In the sequence come next boondi raita, chana batata and a paneer snack that is subtle in spices but deft in taste. Moreover, the paneer is completely home-made, rendering its a soft texture. The chana batata is a chana and aloo snack blended with jaggery and a tamarind-dates chutney.
Now comes the main course – the much loved Dal Chawal Palida. This is a traditional Bohra dish made in most Muslim households during their festivals. Palida is produced from the water from which the lentils have been cooked. The rice is delicate and seasoned using spring onion and toor dal, as well as given a smoky aroma by infusing it with charcoal. Rice and dal are cooked to dum and served hot with Palida. Various additions into the palida can be made, like drumsticks or mutton.
After a heavy meal, lastly comes a watermelon coolant, tangy and flavourful on your tongue. The ingredients include watermelon juice, dhaniya and, to add the quirk of tang to the drink, an orange flavour is added.
How to book the Bohra meal?
There are diverse cuisines across India, while a few are still unattained. Well, this Bohra meal was brought into the limelight by a travel company OFFBEAT TRACKS.
For the new, a travel firm that specialises in unique travel plans and experiences, Offbeat Tracks celebrates its clients’ individuality by producing bespoke, one-of-a-kind vacation adventures that are tailored to the smallest of aspects and preferences. So, whether you’re looking for a casual getaway, a raving vacation, or in the mood for some adventure, Offbeat Tracks does have everything exclusively designed for you!
It is with the help of this riveting travel firm that you can book this Bohra meal. One of the Offbeat tracks Instagram posts reads that:
All that the gastronome has to do is to reach out to Offbeat tracks either on their Instagram handle or contact them and get yourselves prepared for an exquisite meal.
Call on: +91 7674062581
A meal that pleases your mind, body and soul, this Bohra meal is a feast. The food is subtle and soft in spice, yet delivers a delectable eating experience. The hospitality the family renders is truly amicable. To sum it up, this Bhora thali is a one-of-its-kind of experience.