best foodsfoods in nepal

Traditional cuisine of Nepal – what you should definitely try and what you shouldn’t!

Food in Nepal is, to put it mildly, an acquired taste. During the month we spent there, we were unable to single out anything special from all the edible variety, as, for example, in Thailand or Vietnam. Although there are no problems with food in Nepal, there are mini-cafes on every corner, especially in Kathmandu, but we cannot say that we fell in love with any dish.

Nepalese cuisine has been influenced by India and China. And you will feel it immediately, provided that you have been to these countries. In Nepal, as in many Asian countries, rice, fresh vegetables, wheat, and meat are very popular when preparing dishes. Like Indian cuisine, Nepalese cuisine uses a variety of spices. So unusual for us that sometimes it’s immediately impossible to understand what you’re actually eating right now! I can characterize these seasonings as spicy-hot, sometimes slightly bitter, but this is for gourmets.

Mo-mo is a traditional dish of Nepal

Let lovers of Nepali cuisine correct me, but we have never found anything tastier than mo-mo. Mo-mo is a traditional dish of Nepal, like our dumplings, you can taste it in any street cafe or chic restaurant. And it really is very reminiscent, if not dumplings, but definitely manti! Inside the mo-mo there is meat with spices, and there may be vegetables, rice or potatoes. Quite a passable dish, especially with some spicy seasoning!

Mo-mo can be boiled, steamed or pan-fried. I really liked them fried, served with sweet and spicy spices. But be careful! Sometimes the spices are very difficult, and they leave a “fire in the mouth.”

As you can probably guess, in Nepal, as in India, the cow is considered a sacred animal, so don’t expect that you will have a beef-veal dish prepared anywhere, or that you will find canned beef in the store.

In the center of tourist cities there are many eating establishments that offer Europeanized dishes, including the usual scrambled eggs, toast with jam, pork steaks, potatoes, etc. They cook it almost the same way as here or in Europe, that is, no special differences can be identified.

But once you move a little beyond the zone of “tourist influence”, in the first cafe you come across you have every chance to taste what ordinary Nepalese eat every day! It was in Kathmandu, we were walking somewhere near the noisy center and decided to go to a local eatery. Naturally, everything was written in Nepali, we did not understand anything and simply pointed our fingers at what seemed more attractive to us on the cafe window. They brought us something sweet and sour, now it’s even difficult to remember what it was. I remember beans, and then something incomprehensible… In general, for some reason we no longer dared to eat in local canteens.

Nepalese dish Dal baht

The most popular Nepali dish among Nepalis is dal baht. Dal baht is rice with lentil sauce; it is usually served with beans, fresh vegetables and a little meat (so as not to get spoiled). Instead of meat, fish and eggs are sometimes added to dal baht. Everything is served with flatbread!

Another popular dish is noodles with vegetables and chicken – thukpa. Naturally, with seasonings! Where would we be without them? Probably, this dish should be very tasty, but either we came across cafes where they could not prepare it properly, or we were completely spoiled…

Chowmein – stir-fried noodles with vegetables

The only thing I ate with pleasure as an exclusive pasta lover. In addition to vegetables, meat or chicken can be added here. Overall, it’s delicious. They cook it in every cafe, even the cheapest! The main thing is that they cook in front of you, here and now, so you are not in danger of poisoning.

Since there is tension with cows in Nepal, the Nepalese use yak milk to their fullest extent, and they make cheese from it. I recommend this cheese! Very unusual taste. Sold in all large stores on the shelves with fermented milk products.

Nepalese tea

Nepalese teas must be mentioned! It’s just something with something! Teas with mountain herbs, you can try a new tea every day. I remember how, when I came to a cafe for breakfast, I couldn’t decide what tea I would drink today, because I wanted to try everything, my favorite teas appeared, but I had to try the rest too! That’s how I “suffered” constantly.

Fruits and vegetables are almost all the same as ours – cucumbers, tomatoes, apples, mini-bananas, pears. Everything is sold on street stalls, you can bargain!

In conclusion, I’ll just say a few words about street food. Tourists ate, but we didn’t risk it! My husband had a bad stomach several times after going to a cafe, which is completely out of character for him, so we put aside the idea of eating on the street, like in Thailand. On street mobile carts they sell boiled and baked potatoes with herbs, traditional Nepalese flatbreads, everyone’s favorite rice with vegetables, and noodles. Try it, if you are not afraid, maybe you will discover something unusual!

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