“Around the World of Cuisine” (in Cayman) in six months
An introduction to Cayman’s diverse selection of International Cuisine.
The first of our featured countries in “Around the World of Cuisine in six months” with caymanrestaurants.com is India.
Dating back over 5000 years, the fragrant and aromatic, flavoursome range of Indian cuisine has, over the years, become a global favourite, and Cayman is no exception! With a selection of popular Indian restaurants across the Island, that bring the authentic taste of a variety of Indian influences, with a tempting range of the most popular dishes taken from all regions of India, we are spoiled for choice.
The History of traditional Indian Cuisine
Traditionally, Indian food is enjoyed as a social event, with all courses served together, prepared with a selection of flavours and spices from sweet through spicy; simple through a complex fusion of spices and ingredients that together create an exotic selection of dishes designed to tantalise the taste buds.
Although each region’s cuisine offers something unique, religious and cultural influences play a major role in the choice of ingredients across the different districts. With over a third of the population of India following a vegetarian diet, as dictated by the Hindu and Buddhist religions, it is no surprise that there is a vast selection of vegetarian options available in most Indian restaurants.
Careful planning is a key element in Indian cuisine with preparation including a diverse combination of spices with popular groupings for specific foods such as Garam Masala which is used widely in Indian cuisine. Popular ingredients include gram flour, a wide range of pulses, yogurt, coconut and Ghee, to name a few.
No matter how simple or complex the dish, great care is always taken in the planning and preparation of meals giving Indian cuisine its distinctive flavours.
Staple Indian dishes and their origin
Well-known regional favourites that have become popular internationally and staple menu items in most Indian restaurants across the world include the Western favourite Vindaloo (known for being one of the spicier dishes) which originated in Goa.
Northern India is known for a wide variety of popular dishes including Samosas, Dal (a well-known lentil dish) and Korma, a mild creamy curry that is served with a selection of different meats or vegetables. The use of clay ovens is also common in the north of India which are used for menu items such as Naan bread and Tandoori chicken, creating a distinctive flavour.
A popular menu item from southern India, found in restaurants across the world, is the poppadum (papadum), a thin circular crisp that is enjoyed with all menu items and a variety of chutneys and condiments. Eastern India is known for its desserts which are enjoyed both nationally and internationally.
To find out more about the history, menus, and food preparation, look out for our upcoming articles throughout the month that will be featuring Cayman’s selection of Indian restaurants.
If this article has already inspired your taste buds, then visit click here to make a reservation at your favourite Indian restaurant.
By Juliette Heath
Juliette Heath is a Caymanian foodie, weddings and events planner, and author of kids’ books.