January 2, 2008

Gujarat, located in North West India, stands as the country’s most industrialized state. But in addition to producing nearly a fifth of the country’s industrial goods, it produces some of the country’s most unique dishes. More than any other region’s cuisine, Gujarat’s is markedly vegetarian because of the influx of Jainism since 6 B.C. and Vaisnavism in 15 A.D. Both these sects of Hinduism stress the practice of vegetarianism. The trademark of all Gujarati dishes is the unusually high sweetness. Even in what would normally be a spicy dish, Gujarati chefs add sugar or jaggery. The most famous of Gujarat is the thali. Its set up is similar to Kashmir’s warzan. The thali is served on a silver platter with curries that compliment the roti (bread). And of course, in typical Gujurati style, the dish includes two to three sweets. The specific combinations of curries in the thali differ from chef to chef.


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