Experiencing Delhi, Mumbai and Goa: A Food Trip – Part Two

Mumbai

In Maharashtra, in Southwestern India, you can find Mumbai. The region has a long coastline and a tropical climate with months of the monsoon season. Produce like cereals and vegetables vary greatly. Fish and seafood are part of the daily diet along the seaboard while elsewhere, millet, mutton and different seasonal vegetables and lentils predominate. 

There are several sub-regional cuisines, including coastal Malvani-style food in South Konkan, the Vidarbha cuisine, and the ultra-spicy Saoji cuisine of Nagpur. Of course, do not miss the street food scene of Mumbai. Look out for misal pav, vada pav and Bombay grilled chutney sandwiches.

In Mumbai, on the western coast, the food culture has long been shaped by industry and waves of immigration throughout the 20th century. Once it was Bombay, a city full of textile mills, home to India’s film industry and the country’s financial capital. It’s an important port, drawing immigrants from everywhere, so the cuisine is an explosion of flavors.

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Experiencing Delhi, Mumbai and Goa: A Food Trip – Part One

Food Destinations with Distinctions   

If you’re talking about India’s capital cuisine, it’s Delhi, the melting pot of all of India’s regions and ethnicities. With the world-famous butter chicken, stuffed parathas, chaat and kebabs, Delhi’s dining scene hosts a variety of international influences, food from any region in India is found here. Tourists and residents go to the noisy lanes of Chawri Bazar and Chandni Chowk for a total experience.

Old Delhi is the street food capital of India.

There are many authentic Delhi dishes here, such as bedmi puri (puffed bread with lentils), chole kulche (a popular breakfast of spiced chickpeas in a curry), nagori halwa (a sweet treat of puffed bread with a semolina- and ghee-based paste) or paaya (trotters). If you want nihari (a slow-cooked meat stew), go to Jama Masjid mosque and Turkman Gate; if you like biryani go to Taufeeq ki Biryani, or enjoy Hussain’s fried chicken.

Explore Tibetan cuisine beyond Old Delhi and love the momo dumplings in the city’s northern parts. And if you want more than momos, close to the Yamuna river is Majnu-ka-Tilla, a residential area with a wide variety of traditional Tibetan foods. There are lots of food stalls and restaurants, serving meaty stews, chicken thukpa (a Himalayan noodle soup) and spicy fried pork with steamed rice.

South Delhi is also a food adventure, home to a vast Afghan settlement of migrant workers, it’s known as Little Kabul. They have rows of Afghan tandoor shops and restaurants here. If you want freshly baked roht (Afghan sweet bread), mantu (lamb and onion dumplings) and juicy mutton kebabs topped with sour spice, go to Kashmiri Lane.

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A Food Trip Through Northern India

Shaping Northern Cuisine

When you travel to India, don’t expect a standard menu. The country is vast – 29 states with its own topography and traditions. The religion, language and culinary customs will be completely different. Food experiences vary based on the landscape and climate, as well as historic immigration patterns, spices, rulers and trade links. Religions influence the relationship with food.

The north comprises states such as Punjab, Haryana, Uttarakhand and Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir, heavily influenced by history and topography. Find here the Himalayas and the Indo-Gangetic Plain – considered the “food bowl” of India for centuries.

The mountains provide a temperate, arid, less humid climate than Kolkata or Mumbai, hence, an abundance of specific ingredients, such as wheat, rice, maize, dairy, mustard seed, dried fruits, pistachios, almonds, saffron, turmeric and cumin. With emphasis on the seasons, northern cuisine tends to be rustic.

Northern India Food Culture

Conquerors, immigrants and traders rolled through Northern India. The food culture reflects many waves of migration from Mongolia, Persia, Turkey, Africa and other regions. The Mughal empire (16th and 17th centuries) fed on many milk proteins, like paneer, ghee and yogurt. In Punjab, dishes tend to revolve around the tandoor (clay oven), while lamb chops, beef kebabs, chicken tikka and all kinds of skewered meats are cooked.

Punjab food is meatier, using yogurts to sweeten and tenderize the meats in dishes such as murgh (chicken) tikka. Himachal and Haryana use a lot more vegetables, fish and commonly dairy. Kashmir has a distinct Muslim influence, such as the roghan ghosht, a slow-cooked lamb stew. A Tibetan and Nepali influence is found in the mountains, so there’s more dumplings, noodles and stews.

Throughout the North, jalebi with rabdi – swirls of deep-fried batter, topped with a creamy condensed-milk sauce, spices, sugar and nuts can be found on every street corner.

They say that even though the presentation of Northern Indi’s cuisine is simple, it celebrates the style of food. Northern Indians celebrate the flavors, the seasons, and the bounties of nature.

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Northern India’s Culinary Experience in Bellevue

For cuisine that is truly shaped by Northern India’s topography, climate and history, come to MokSHA in Bellevue – where the culinary experience is authentic and spiritual.

Amazing Benefits of the Golden Root

Raw Turmeric and Its Health Benefits

Turmeric is a member of the ginger family and naturally occurs in Southern Asia and India. It is characterized by its rough, brown skin and a dark orange flesh. With a fragrant aroma and slightly bitter taste, turmeric is a common Indian culinary spice. It gives curry its yellow color. Not only has it been used for thousands of years as a spice, it is also a medicinal herb. It is well known for its antioxidant, anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-carcinogenic and anti-inflammatory properties.

Digestion Booster

Turmeric’s number one benefit is that it is a digestion booster. Curcumin, turmeric’s main component, triggers bile production which helps facilitate smoother digestion through the digestive tract. Hence, those with gastric problems like indigestion and heartburn, and irritable bowel syndrome can benefit from this spice. Experts also say that raw turmeric may help treat stomach ulcers and irritation.

Anti-inflammatory Properties

The anti-inflammatory properties of raw turmeric help relieve symptoms associated with both rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Turmeric can also be used to treat inflammation due to eye infections.

The antioxidants present in raw turmeric can help cure a variety of skin problems, including those caused by air pollution. By curbing free radical activity, it can boost skin health. Using raw haldi is one of the oldest and traditional ways to treat skin disease.

Its anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties boost healing. As a pain-reliever, one can take turmeric with warm milk for best results. It can also be applied in paste form on the affected area.

Experts and some studies claimed that the raw compound can also act as a blood purifier, eliminating toxins from the body. It also regulates blood clot formation. It was also claimed that it can regulate blood sugar levels, surely good news for diabetics also.

Delicious with Benefits in Bellevue

MokSHA in Bellevue uses popular spices in many of its classic dishes. Enjoy our selections and savor authentic southern Indian cuisine with their natural flavors and aroma. Dine delicious and dine healthy in Bellevue.

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India’s Most Popular Spices Are Blends of Spices

Top Spices of the North and South  

India is known for its many herbs and spices. Four of the most popular ones are the chettinad masala, bafat, curry leaves and garam masala. 

Chettinad Masala

A traditional spice blend – consisting of 16 or more spices – is the Chettinad Masala, originating from Tamil Nadu, in the extreme south of India. Some of the spices are cinnamon, green cardamom, mace, star anise, cloves, fenugreek, black pepper, kapok, cumin, coriander, fennel, mustard seeds, dry red chili peppers, curry leaves, poppy seeds, turmeric, and the key ingredient called stone flower, which releases an intense aroma when tempered. To make Chettinad, all the spices are dry-roasted in a particular order, left to cool and pounded in a mortar with a pestle. Chettinad is usually used in various Chettinad non-vegetarian and vegetarian curries. 

Bafat

Bafat is another group of spices that is traditional Mangalorean, a collection of ethnic groups from the historical locales of South Canara on the south western coast of Karnataka.  Their cuisine is largely influenced by South Indian cuisine and the highly aromatic spicy blend is especially typical of the Mangalorean Catholic community. Bafat is a blend of ground spices such as red chilis, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, peppercorns, mustard seeds, and turmeric. To make bafat, each spice is dry-roasted separately until fragrant and slightly browned, then all of them are combined and ground to a powdery consistency; they enhance the flavor of various meat specialties, curries, and vegetarian dishes. Bafat is available at most grocery stores in Mangalore. 

Curry Leaves

Curry leaves are a staple of South Indian cuisine The dark, shiny green color and aroma of the leaves release a unique, nutty aroma when fried in oil. The leaves soften significantly when cooked and are usually used as a flavoring to rice, chutneys, dals, soups, and stews. Curry leaves are common in many Indian groceries, frozen or kept in an airtight container to keep their flavors for a longer time.

Garam Masala

Garam Masala can be literally translated as hot ingredients, and is sometimes described as an aromatic blend that is meant to heat the body. The blend is intensely aromatic and may consist of ground spices such as cinnamon, cumin, cardamom, cloves, and peppercorns. Its origins are in Northern India, where winters are typically colder than in the rest of the country. It is recommended to be used at the end of the cooking process to achieve the best flavor, although it can also be used at the beginning, when it’s usually added to ghee or cooking oil in order to provide a more pungent flavor.

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Enjoying Flavors of the North

MokSHA Bellevue uses all the above spices when and where to flavor our selections. We offer an unforgettable dining experience when you come for authentic Northern Indian cuisine.

Spices Indian Food

What is Papadum?

papadum

Papadum is a type of bread originating from Indian culinary traditions. Occasionally, you may see it go under the name “lentil chips”, “appala”, or “papari”. It comes in the form of a thin, cracker-like food made from a dough that might be made from a flour of black beans, lentils, rice, or chickpeas. Often times, the dough will be seasoned with an assortment of Indian spices to give it an extra kick.

People will enjoy papadum in a variety of different ways. Sometimes it stands by itself as an appetizer or a snack, possibly dressed with chutney, raita, or a similar sauce. It may also be served along with a curry dish, where it might serve as a utensil to scoop up the main dish.

Those who are unable to handle the strong spiciness of Indian dishes find the bread handy for cutting the intensity of the curry.

The Many Benefits of Chili Peppers

Chili Pepper

The chili pepper is surprisingly dense in valuable vitamins and minerals. In a single, 100 gram serving, you get 240% of your recommended vitamin C, 39% percent of your vitamin B6, 32% of your vitamin A, 13% of your iron, 14% of your copper, 7% of your potassium, and more.

The nutritional benefits of a diet rich in chili peppers are many, and include all of the following:

  • Heart Health: The capsaicin found in the peppers serve to reduce your cholesterol and triglyceride levels, protecting your heart from damage. It also helps your body break down fibrin, which is important for the formation of blood clots. It has been observed that cultures that eat a lot of hot peppers have a significantly lower rate of heart attacks and strokes.
  • Lower Blood Pressure: The high vitamin content of the peppers facilitate healthy, elastic blood vessels that are better able to deal with pressure fluctuations. Eating peppers also promote sweating, which removes sodium from your bloodstream.
  • Weight Control: The thermogenic properties of capsaicin stimulate your body’s natural fat-burning processes. This prevents the formation of adipose tissue and generate heat and promotes weight loss.
  • Metabolic Health: A scientific study demonstrated that capsaicin prevents stomach ulcers, kills harmful bacteria in your digestive tract, and may serve to cure inflammatory bowel disease.
  • Anti-Inflammation: Capsaicin is a potent anti-inflammant, helping your body fight pain associated with inflammation.
  • Cancer Prevention: It has been found that capsaicin kills off malignant cancer cells in the prostate.

Red pepper powder is a big part of South Indian culinary traditions. If you would like to make this healthy pepper a bigger part of your life, come down to our Bellevue Indian cuisine restaurant tonight.

Interesting Facts About India’s Food You Thought You Knew

Indian Cuisine

Food is much a part of India’s art and culture and many recipes today go back thousands of years in the nation’s history. With a tale that long, surely outside influences have come to shape and color India’s cuisine as we know now. The vast country’s myriad of dishes may not all be homegrown. Let’s look along those lines and what else.

Indian food is said to be based on six kinds of tastes or rasas – sweet (madhura), salty (lavana), sour (amala), pungent (katu), bitter (tikta) and astringent (kasya). This is the wisdom of Ayurvedic nutrition, much revered by the people of India, as they believe the tongue says it all – the natural guide map to proper nutrition.

Deep fried balls of dough or gulab jamun, which are dipped in sugar syrup, are not really from India. They originated in the Mediterranean region of Luqmat al Qadi, long before they came to India.

The popular samosa, the fried or baked dish with savory fillings, is from the Middle East and only came to India prior to the 13th to 14th century. Jalebi or Zalebi, the deep-fried, pretzel-shaped maida flour batter is also from the Middle East.

From Nepal, came India’s Daal Chawal/Daal Bhaat, which is steamed rice and a cooked lentil soup. Rajma, vegetarian dish of red kidney beans, originally belongs to Mexico. Naan, India’s oven-baked flatbread, has Persian roots. The famous saffron spice is not originally Indian; it was brought by Greek, Arab and Roman traders in the Middle Ages. And did you know that the world-famous Chicken Tikka Masala is Scottish in origin?

There’s more! Black rice is found only in India and China and is also known as forbidden or magic rice. Coffee was unknown to India before the 16th century. And thanks to the British! It was only around the 16th century when tomato, potato, and sugar were introduced in India. The lowest meat consumption in the world per person – you guessed right – India!

Having Fun with Amazing Food Facts in Bellevue

Know more when you dine at MokSHA, your Indian restaurant in Bellevue. You never thought you knew until now. Have a little fun while enjoying our authentic Indian selections. Dine sumptuous, healthy and sustainable.

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Grass-fed, Cage-free Meat at our Bellevue Indian Restaurant

Why Eat Grass-fed, Cage-free Meat?

Eating meat is not all bad. In fact, you can make a difference if your meat of choice is sourced from animals bred for meat that feed on fresh grass and roam free in farms. These animals are more humanely treated, though may be more expensive meat, and their benefits are manifold.

Being raised organically, these animals are fed with organic feed, a more nutritious alternative. Since they are not caged or confined in closed spaces there are less chances of contamination or bacterial and viral attacks within their enclosures. Waste and pollution within confinements are also greatly reduced. Also, free range animals tend to eat their natural foods, like fresh grass, insects, grubs that are more nutritious and are out in the open. Being so, these humanely raised animals contain higher amount of vitamins and minerals and less saturated fat.

Bellevue Indian Restaurant supports Sustainability

Raising these organically fed animals is also good for biodiversity as sustainable farms raise a variety of livestock in a given environment building natural resistance to diseases. Local farms like these use less energy in terms of fuel for transport and need not travel far to deliver their goods. If you support these farms you are actually sustaining your local community and not the big corporations.

So why not grass-fed, cage-free meat for good health and sustainable community.

MokSHA, serving Indian cuisine in Bellevue, supports farms that raise grass-fed and cage-free animals for food consumption. Experience delicious and healthy options at MokSHA and know the difference.

Paneer: India’s Favorite Cheese

Paneer is a variety of cow’s milk cheese that traces its origins back to India. It is the most common of cheese used in India, as well as throughout much of the Middle East. It is called an acid-set cheese, meaning that it is curdled and set with the help of lemon juice or a similar acid instead of the rennet and bacteria that is commonly used for most conventional cheeses. Its lack of rennet and its high protein content makes the cheese a popular choice for vegetarians.

The word “paneer” is a Persian word that translates to “cheese”. It was apparently first created back in the seventeenth century, when the Portuguese introduced the process of creating acid-set cheeses to the country. After that, it spread throughout India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh, where it remains highly popular to this day.

The taste of paneer is simple and highly versatile. Many chefs like to crumble it into many curry-based dishes, since the cheese readily absorbs the strong flavors of the spices. You can also find it used as a filling for traditional stuffed breads and desserts. In modern India, it has been adopted for use in a number of familiar fast-food dishes, with paneer-topped pizzas, paneer cheeseburgers, and even a paneer-stuffed burrito appearing in Indian versions of American franchises..

At MokSHA’s Bellevue Indian cuisine restaurant, you can experience the taste of paneer in many of our dishes. Try a lahsooni saag paneer, a paneer butter masala, or a malai paneer kofta.

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Parotta: India’s Favorite Flatbread

Parotta

A parotta, alternatively known as “paratha”, is a kind of flatbread originating from Indian culinary traditions. The name is derived from the words “parat” and “atta”. Together, these words literally translate to “layers of cooked dough”, describing the flaky, layered texture of the bread. This fine texture and the great taste has made the flatbread a big favorite both in India and throughout the globe.

The preparation of a parotta starts with whole wheat dough. Sometimes ghee will be added during the kneading process. Once the dough is smooth, it is formed into balls, allowed to rest for as much as six hours, and then rolled or stretched out into paper-thin sheets. A cook will fold these sheets multiple times in order to achieve the unique, crisp, flaky texture of the final product. If a filling is to be added, it is placed in the middle of the dough during this process. It is then baked in a pan, cooking a few minutes on either side.

Parottas represent one of the subcontinent’s most popular breads. Indians will commonly eat them either as a breakfast dish, or as a tea-time snack. They will either be eaten plain, or stuffed with a filling like mashed, spiced potatoes, lentils, greens, or paneer. Sometimes, the bread will be rolled up and used as a dipping food with tea.

Eating Indian Food on a Low-Fat Diet

MokSha Bellevue Indian Cuisine

Healthy Dining Options

If you’re trying to cut down on your intake of unhealthy fats and cholesterol, Indian cuisine can be a very strong choice.

Traditional Indian dining is largely very friendly to a low-fat or low-cholesterol diet. First of all, there is a heavy dependence on grains and vegetables, rather than meats.

When meat is used, the grilling techniques frequently employed drain away much of the harmful fats. Finally, the strong spices used in most dishes serve to boost your metabolism, and are highly conducive of weight loss.

To get the most out of your diet while dining at an Indian restaurant, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Consider papadum bread or naan as an alternative to fried samosas.
  • If you eat meat, look for chicken or seafood instead of beef or lamb.
  • Shrimp is found in a lot of dishes. This gives you a healthy dose of the omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Look for a curry with a vegetable or dal base, rather than the ones prepared with a cream or coconut milk base.
  • Are you getting rice? Consider basmati over the familiar white rice. This popular Indian rice is big on valuable nutrition that can help you clean cholesterol out of your system, and has a great taste that works well without fatty sauces.
  • Try choosing dishes made with olive oil or garlic. Both of these common ingredients are effective in reducing your cholesterol levels.

At MokSHA in Bellevue, we offer many satisfying, South Indian-style dishes that mesh well with a variety of diets. Come and try one of our curries, kebabs, or more today!

Peanut Sauces in Indian Cuisine

Peanut-based sauces are a big part of the culinary traditions of numerous cultures, including those of Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, China, Vietnam, parts of Africa, and India. Variations can also be found in lesser degrees throughout Europe, the Middle East, and the Philippines. It is often used as an accompaniment for meat or vegetable dishes, and occasionally employed as a dipping sauce.

The nutritional benefits of peanut sauce are many. Peanuts are a great source of quality, vegan-friendly protein. They are also rich in niacin, copper, resveratrol, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and zinc, which serve to fight harmful cholesterol, lower your sodium levels, and prevent heart disease.

Though peanut sauces are generally high in fat and calories, much of this comes from monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats. Both of these are recognized as highly beneficial when enjoyed in moderation.

Typically, a peanut sauce will be made by combining ground, roasted peanuts with coconut milk, soy sauce, garlic, and spices. At MokSHA, you can experience the great taste of this sauce in our Peanut Indian Baby Eggplant dish, made with onions and cashews. Come give it a try at our Bellevue Indian restaurant.

The Story of Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken tikka is an Indian dish that is largely attributed to the Punjab region. The word tikka translates to “bits” or “pieces”, describing the way that the chicken meat is prepared.

Traditionally, the chicken is cut into small pieces and marinated in a sauce made from yogurt, lemon or lime juice, and a blend of Indian spices which may include cayenne, coriander, cumin, ginger, garam masala, and turmeric. These pieces are then placed on skewers to be baked in a tandoori oven. In India, people will prepare chicken tikka for special, celebratory occasions.

Often times, particularly in the West, chicken tikka is served with a masala gravy to produce the familiar chicken tikka masala dish, like the kind you can find at MokSHA Bellevue.

Though the origins of this particular preparation are unclear, it is largely thought that it was first served by Indian restauranteurs living in the United Kingdom. It is said that a bus driver sent a plate of curry back to the kitchen, telling chef Ali Ahmed Aslam that it was dry. Aslam, who was eating tomato soup at the moment, mixed some of the soup into the curry with an assortment of spices. The driver loved the end result, and brought his friends back again and again to try it.

If you’re a fan of this popular, classic dish, come visit MokSHA for quality Indian cuisine in Bellevue today.

What is a Kurma?

The kurma, alternatively known as “korma”, “khorma”, or “qorma”, is a dish originating from Central Asian culinary traditions. Its name is derived from from an Urdu word meaning “braise”, which serves to describe how the dish is traditionally made. Generally, it will come in the form of braised meat or vegetables, prepared in a spicy sauce made with water, stock, and either yogurt, nut paste, or cream.

A number of main ingredients will be used in the dish, including lamb, chicken, turnip, beef, and others. Its flavor comes from a mixture of spices that generally includes ground coriander and cumin. Other common spices include chili and ginger. In South Indian versions, chefs will often add bay leaves and dried coconut to the mix.

Though korma has traveled far and been adapted by numerous cultures, it traces its origins back to the Moghlai cuisine of Central Asia. Historians place its invention back at some point in the 16th century, during the Mughal incursions into the area of modern-day India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh.

The earliest forms of the dish were cooked in mud pots over a wood stove made from mud; many believe that these old cooking techniques were responsible for much of the dish’s incredible taste. You can still find people using the same techniques throughout the rural parts of India to this day.

The Curious Origins of Vindaloo

Vindaloo is a common staple of any restaurant that specializes in Indian cuisine. Featuring a powerful, spicy taste, it is well-loved by fans of the more fiery offerings of India. However, if we trace the dish back to its earliest incarnations, we find its roots far away from the Indian subcontinent.

The first ancestor of vindaloo comes from Portugal, where it was known as carne de vinha d’alho. This is a term that literally translates to “meat, wine, and garlic”. It came in the form of a preserved meat eaten by Portuguese sailors during long voyages. Ships would pack wooden barrels with alternating layers of a meat, usually pork, and garlic, all soaked in wine.

The Portuguese took their preserved meat with them to the Goa region of India at some point after Vasco de Gama first arrived in the country in 1498. The Goan people assimilated many Portuguese culinary innovations into their own traditions, and vindaloo was one of them. It was the Goans who added many of the spices we associate with vindaloo to the recipe, including chilies, ginger, coriander, and cumin.

The modern vindaloo is far removed from its earliest roots, mostly reflecting the contributions of the Goans. Further, though traditional vindaloo has not historically involved potatoes, most modern dishes do; this is based on a misconception based on the fact that the Hindi word “aloo” translates to potato.

Mango: India’s Delicious Super-Fruit

Mango

The mango is a fruit native to the tropical regions of the sub-Himalayan plains of India. Delicious and highly nutritious, mango is considered by many to be “the king of fruits”. It is for this reason that it has been a big part of Indian dining for many years.

Nutritionally, mangos are among the richest of fruits, often identified as “super-fruits”. When you eat mango, you are enjoying all of the following benefits:

  • A 100 gram serving of fresh mango gives you 25% of your recommended daily intake of vitamin A, as well as flavonoids like beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, and beta-cryptoxanthin. These compounds are valuable for maintaining healthy vision and skin, as well as protecting you from oral cancer.
  • A high vitamin C content and strong antioxidant compounds found in mangos have been found to protect you from colon cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, and leukemia.
  • A 100 gram serving of fresh mango contains 156 milligrams of potassium and only two milligrams of sodium. Potassium serves to remove excess sodium from your blood, helping regulate the blood pressure of people struggling with high sodium levels.
  • Mangos are high in fiber, helping you to maintain a healthy digestive system.
  • The strong iron content of mangos makes them a strong choice for people who need a meat-free source of iron.
  • Mangos contain a variety of other nutrients, including vitamin E, vitamon B6, and copper.

Enjoy India’s Popular Lassi

Lassi is a popular drink in the Indian Subcontinent that is made from yogurt, water, fruits and spices. The drink can either be made into a sweet lassi containing sugar or fruits to sweeten the drink or a salted lassi. Lassis can be enjoyed as a summer refreshment to cool off from the hot weather.

Other than the classic lassi, other popular flavor is the Mango lassi. It’s made from the original ingredient with the addition of fresh mango or mango pulp.

The Mango lassi is enjoyed all over the world and is a summertime favorite because of the cold and creamy consistency, similar to a smoothie. Just like a smoothie, Lassi drinks can be made at home with a few simple ingredients.

Ingredients

The base ingredients include: plain yogurt, water, and flavor such as salt, sugar, honey, fruits, spices, etc. There are alternatives such as coconut milk for a vegan option. Some people add in alcohol, mint leaves, nuts, flaxseeds, cream, or even butter to change up the classic recipe.

Health Benefits

Since the drink is a yogurt based drink, it contains many beneficial bacteria that aides digestion and decreases the harmful bacteria.

Try our Mango Lassi, one of the popular and top selling beverages at MokSHA Bellevue.

The Phenomenon of Chai Tea

Masala Chai

What is chai tea? This question can be answered in two ways. When we trace the word back to its native land in India, the word “chai” is simply the Hindi term for tea. However, outside of Hindi-speaking countries, the term is often used to specifically describe a style of tea commonly associated with traditional Indian dining.

A chai tea will often be called masala chai, describing the mix of spices that goes into its brewing. The specific blend of spices used in the tea will vary greatly from one region to another, and even among different Indian households. However, the most common spices are cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and pepper.

Some people will add to this vanilla, nutmeg, coriander, fennel seed, or chocolate. These spices are combined with a rich black tea, heavy milk, and usually a bit of sugar or some other sort of sweetening agent.

Fans of chai tea appreciate the warm, relaxing sensation that it brings about, as well as the health benefits that come with drinking it. It contains some potent antioxidants, powerful anti-inflammatory properties, and substances that serve to calm your stomach and facilitate a healthy digestive system. The caffeine in the black tea makes it a popular, more healthy alternative to coffee.

Drinking chai tea is a big part of dining in India. It is common to find this beverage on the menu of any good Indian restaurant, either within the country or abroad. At our Bellevue Indian cuisine restaurant, you can experience this classic favorite for yourself. Try it out at MokSHA today!