Indian food is different and unique in various aspects from the rest of the world. With distinctive flavor and taste, the food habits and cuisines in the country have been influenced by various factors. Numerous customs and traditions of civilizations of the British, Persian, Arabs and Portuguese have left an inedible mark on not just the culture of the country but on its cuisine as well. Further, with diverse culinary habits, India truly depicts diversity of cuisines in a myriad shades and manners. Each part of India have their own unique and special set of dishes which are completely varied and distinct from the other part.
The Indian cuisine can be divided into four diverse groups namely, South, East, West and North. So while cuisine of North India is dominated by thick, moderately spicy and creamy gravies, cuisine of Eastern Indian is relatively simpler and is generally steamed and fried. On the other hand, the best way to describe the cuisine of West India would be to say that it is diverse from extremely spicy to elegantly sweet. Authentic South India cuisine is known for its spicy foods as it has long been a center for spice trade in the country, including cardamom, pepper, cinnamon and cloves. This part of India is also famous for the availability of coconut and sea food which are an integral part of the cuisine of the South Indian states.
Another aspect of South Indian dishes is that it is rice based. So whether it be dosa which is a combination of rice and lentil, the biryani of Hyderabad are considered as classic dishes not just in India but throughout the world. On the whole South Indian dishes are an amazing blend of colors, spices, flavor, seasoning, nutritional balance, brilliant taste and visual delight.
The four main regions of South India include Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka. Food dishes from Andhra Pradesh are known for their intense and rich spiciness. There are two types of cuisines in Andhra Pradesh namely Andhra Mughlai and cuisine of Telengana. So while Andhra Mughlai is rich and aromatic and has basically evolved in the city of Hyderabad. Some popular dishes here include kebabs, biryani and salans filled with exotic spices, nuts and dry fruits. Red hot chillies and tamarind dominate various dishes like pulao, vegetable curry and dal in the Telengana flavored cuisine. Telengana cuisine has gained a lot of prominence due to its exotic and mouth-watering non-vegetarian dishes like mutton or chicken that are cooked with drumsticks. Dishes from Hyderabad are greatly influenced by the Nizams or Muslim rulers. From sour to sweet and from hot to salty, Hyderabad cuisine is extravagant and complete. The biryani of Hyderabad have achieved great fame and popularity and are considered as one of the finest dishes not just in South India but in the entire country.
Tamil Nadu enjoys a definite and individual place in the culinary map of India. With a wide range of dishes, red chillies, turmeric, tamarind and whiff of asafetida are important and crucial ingredients. Popular dishes of the region include dosa, idli, vada, uppuma. Besides these there are a variety of stews, rasam koothu, poriyal, avial which are popular in the state. Sweet dishes like payassam and mysore pak are well known as well. Chettinand cuisine from the state has gained immense popularity throughout the country, famous dishes including varuval (dried dry fish cooked with spices), pepper chicken, biryani, poriyal (curry), etc. further a number of snacks from papads to appalam, chips and vada are also very well-known. Filter coffee from the state is also very popular and has achieved a cult status in the cuisine as well.
Kerala cuisine is more popular for both its non-vegetarian and vegetarian dishes. One of the most popular vegetarian dishes is the traditional sadhyas which is a meal that is served with rice and and a grand assortment of a number of side dishes. Served on a banana leaf, the sadhya is a completed meal with appetizers, main course and desserts. Another aspect of Kerala cuisine is that it is prepared with coconut and an assortment of spices like cinnamon, ginger, pepper, coriander, turmeric, cloves, etc. Some dishes of Kerala even have a Arab influence.
The cuisine from Karnataka also forms a major part of the South Indian cuisine category. Influenced by its three neighboring states, the cuisine is also inspired from Maharashtra in the north. Bisibele Bath. Saaru. Vangi Bath, Khara Bath, Kesari Bath, Akki Rotti, Davanagere -Benne Dosa, Ragi mudde, and Uppittu are some of the famous dishes of the state.
Article Source: http://goarticles.com/article/The-Rich-Heritage-Of-South-Indian-Cuisines/8728459