Indian Side Dishes Content from the guide to life, the universe and everything

Indian Side Dishes

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Menus in Indian restaurants are split into two parts: the intelligible section that most of us are familiar with and can happily use to order our curries and rices; and the side dish section that only serves to rub in the fact that there is a corner of this green and pleasant land that is forever India.

The list below, while incomplete, might help. Take it along to your next Indian meal and bask in the admiring glow of your fellow diners as you show off your new-found knowledge of eastern foodstuffs. Just don't blame us if they all taste like curry.

Aalu chholeDiced potatoes and spicy-sour chickpeas
Aalu dumPotato curry
ArharYellow dhal (in Bangal and Gujarat)
BainganAubergine (eggplant)
Baingan bhartaPureed aubergine (eggplant)
BarfiFlavoured chickpea flour (sweet)
BhelpuriPopular Bombay snack
BhujiasDeep-fried small vegetable pieces in chickpea flour
BiryaniMeat with delicious orange rice, nuts and dried fruit
Black uradPunjabi dhal
Bombay duckFish dish
ChaatGeneral term for snacks
ChannaSpiced chickpeas with small puris
ChapatiSmall thin bread
DahinCurd (yoghurt)
Dahin maachCurried fish in curd sauce
Dahin idliRice dumplings with spicy curd sauce
DhalLentil gravy
DhansaakChicken cooked with curried lentils (Bombay)
DopiazaLiterally "two onions", a type of korma
DosaWafer-thin pancake
Dum pukhtSteam pressure-cooking in a sealed clay pot (Lucknow)
FulkaSee Chapati
Gajar ka halwaA sweet made from carrot, sweet spices and milk
GheeClarified butter
Gulaab jamunsA dessert of small milky "things" in syrup
GushtabaSpiced meatballs in a yoghurt sauce
IdliRice dumpling
JalebisOrange-coloured squiggles with syrup inside
Kashmiri biryaniFruit salad with rice
Kati kebabCalcuttan local kebab dish
KormaRich, substantial dish prepared by braising
KulfiPistachio-flavoured sweet, similar to ice cream
LaduYellow-coloured balls made from chickpea flour (sweet)
LassiDelicious yoghurt drink, often fruit-flavoured
LuchiSee Puri
MakhanwalaChicken in rich butter sauce
Malai koftaRich, cream-based dish
Mattar panirPeas and cheese in gravy
MoongCommon green lentils used to make dhal
MulligatawnyCurry soup
NaanBread cooked in a Tandoori oven
NamkinPre-packaged spiced nibbles
Navratan kormaVery tasty dish using nuts
Paat gobiCabbage
Palak panirSpinach and cheese
PakorasDeep-fried small vegetable pieces in chickpea flour
PapadamsCrispy deep-fried wafers
ParathaChapati with ghee
PataaRolled leaf stuffed with fruit and nuts
PayasamSweet drink made from coconut milk, mangoes, spices and milk
PhulkaSee Chapati
PomfretFlounder-like fish (Bombay)
PulaoFlavoured rice, often with pulses
PuriDeep-fried bread
PuttuSteamed rice roll, served with sugar or dhal
RaitaCurd mixed with vegetables (like tzatziki)
RajmaaKidney beans used to make dhal
Ras gullasSweet balls of cream cheese flavoured with rose water
Rogan joshStraightforward lamb curry
RotiSee Chapati
Saag goshtSpinach and meat
SabziCurried vegetables
SambharSoup-like lentil/vegetable dish with sour tamarind flavour
SamosasCurried vegetables in a pastry triangle
SandeshA milk sweet
Seekh kebabSkewered kebab
Shami kebabWrapped kebab
TandooriMeat cooked in herbs, spices and a clay oven
ThaliIndian "meal": rice, puris/chapatis, curry sauces
TiffinLight meal or snack
UttapamSee Dosa
VindalooVinegar marinade, fairly hot

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