Sindhi Cuisine

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Food is very important in Sindhi culture. A lot of attention is given to how the food is prepared and what combination of dishes are best. Over the years these combinations have become established and today when one mentions the combination, for example: Sai bhaji Pulao, all the side dishes that go with it automatically come to mind. In this instance, fried potatoes or fried bhindi, dahi. Some of the more common Sindhi foods are:

Dodo chutney Millet-flour kneaded with spices cooked unleavened on a skillet and eaten with a garlic-based mint chutney.

Seyal Pallo Sea-bass cooked in a base of onions and tomatoes, eaten with chapati. Very few people know how to cook it to perfection. As this fish is rich in oil the secret of how much oil to put in the cooking of the gravy becomes important. Also, there is no gravy as such, but a well cooked and blended base.

Seyal Dabroti Bread or chapati cooked in a base of coriander, garlic and tomatoes. This is a breakfast food. The same can be cooked in onions and tomato as well.

Seero Puri Another breakfast food. Seero is semolina cooked in butter or oil, fried on a slow fire till it turns light, golden brown, the aroma filling the house. Then, proportions of water and sugar are added, just enough to cook and sweeten the seero. Eaten with fried puri, it is as close to heaven as one can get. That is why perhaps seero is also served as an offering in temples.

Loli and yoghurt or Loli and Indian milk tea made with cardamom, This is a thick unleavened bread cooked on the skillet. The wheat dough is kneaded with onions, hot green pepper, garlic and coriander/cilantro leaves, all finely chopped. Along with salt and oil the flour is kneaded slowly into a fairly stiff dough. Then rolled out to one eighth inch thickness and cooked on the skillet on a low flame. When the loli is half done, a little oil is added to make it crisp.

Lolo is the sweet version of loli. In this wheat dough only a little salt is added, but a proportion of sugar syrup is added and the flour is kneaded with ghee or butter. Then cooked on the skillet slowly. Lolos are almost a quarter or more inches thick.

Malpura 'Churhi' dal. Malpuras are a kind of deep fried pancakes. Milk or yoghurt , black pepper corns and sugar are added to white flour and a thick batter is made. A circular pancake is then dropped into a flat frying pan which should contain about half an inch of oil to fry in. This sweet bread is eaten with boiled yellow mung dal in which only salt, a drop or so of oil and turmeric is added.

Meethi Aloo. Garlic, hot chili peppers and fresh or dry fennel leaves combine to transform the simple potato into a curry which can be eaten with chapati, puri, rice or regular bread.

Muttur Paneer can be made in different gravies, the chief ingredients are the peas and home made cottage cheese.

Thaynri is sweet rice, usually made on special occasions.

Kheerni Thickened (by boiling) milk with Cardamoms, Saffron and a number of rich mild spices.

Authored by Melwani.