The rains are finally here. As the clouds burst over the hot streets, there is a chemical reaction that triggers in your system. You’re gonna have that craving to sit by your window and gobble down some yummy food. Well, here our the top comfort foods and soothing drinks that are perfect for the monsoon.
1. The Bhutta (roasted corn on the cob)
It is the ultimate and most accessible street food in India. It’s quick to make and extremely healthy to eat (unless you’re the kind who adds a ton of yummy butter!) The roasted corn on the cob, also known as bhutta, in India is served with a generous rub of a salt-chilly powder mix and a squeeze of lime. Yum!
2. Vada pav
The batata (potato) vada pav (bread) is the quintessential Indian burger. In Mumbai, it’s sold at almost every street food stall, especially near major commute stations and street shopping zones. Most of us like it with a delicious spread of green chutney and a dash of the sweet and sour tamarind chutney. And if you can handle it; ask for a spicy chilly to jolt your taste buds.
P.S. In Maharashtra, the vada pav is served with a yummy but spicy powered chutney made of chilly and garlic powder mix. It is also mixed with some grated coconut in the coastal areas.
3. Samosas and pakodas
Again, an Indian specialty from the streets. Samosas are deep fried pastries with a savoury filling made from potatoes and spices. In some places in the country, you can treat yourself to versions filled with minced meat too.
Pakoras or pakodas, are the ultimate rain food and known to originate from Uttar Pradesh. They’re found in versions of potatoes, onions, big green chillies, bread or spinach leaves dipped in a lightly seasoned and spiced gram-flour batter and deep fried. Yes, there is a lot of deep frying in monsoon friendly Indian dishes.
4. Misal Pav
It’s a fiery dish served all over Maharashtra and wakes up the locals on a lazy rainy day. It consists of a hot chilly based curry and sprouts of Mataki. Misal, which is also known as Usal (a thicker version than the liquid curry) is served with pav and condiments that include chopped red onions, hot green chillies, lime wedges and coriander leaves.
Because of its fiery kick, I call it ‘Missile Pav’.
5. Stuffed Parathas
It’s a flat bread with a choice of stuffing like spiced mashed potatoes or cauliflower and coriander leaves. I’ve had the best Parathas or Pronthas in North India. And for meat eaters, the parathas can also be made with a kheema (savoury minced meat) filling. It’s served with yoghurt or Indian pickle.
6. Assortment of Kebabs
Though a Middle Eastern dish, kebabs in India are famous. Kashmir and parts of North India and Hyderabad have their own famous styles of delicious kebabs. For meat eaters, a plate of yummy kebabs served with a hot green chutney is the perfect way to enjoy the rains. Chicken tikka, reshmi kebab and sheekh kebab are the favourite choices.
7. Maggie noodles with Goan Sausages
Masala Maggie noodles hold a special place in the life of every Indian. Though some may frown upon its health factor, it is a comfort food. In the monsoons, some like it soupy and the others like it semi-dry. Cook it with some Goan sausages to add that spicy, meaty flavour and you’ll be taking second servings.
8. Manchow soup or Hot & Sour soup
Behold the best thing that happened to Indian Chinese food. It’s the soupy soothing texture that makes it a must-have for the monsoon, especially if you have the sniffles. Machow or hot & sour soup is made with red and green chillies, ginger, carrots, snow peas, tofu or shredded chicken, chopped mushrooms, soy sauce, rice vinegar and a pinch of sugar. And the best part is that you eat it with a sprinkle of fried noodles.
9. Cutting chai or masala chai
In India, we don’t really need an excuse to drink a piping hot cup of masala chai (tea) but the rains form the perfect setting to enjoy this hot beverage.
10. Brandy with Honey
In case, you crave for something with a kick that also soothes your monsoon cold. Try a mix of brandy, hot water and honey. It’s an age-old recipe passed on by grandmas and it works beautifully.
Check out our monsoon playlist here and if you wish for some sexy music to get romantic, then we have our sexy song playlist too. So what do you crave for in the monsoons? Tell us in the comments below.