Culinary Traditions of India Tour
Discover the food and beverages of Eastern India
Min days required for tour : 14 days
Tour cost starting from : USD 2660
Food is not just a mere source of nutrition, it plays a crucial role in shaping human existence and identity. Food unites people, food also differentiates and identifies communities and cultures. Apart from imparting multi sensorial experiences of taste, touch, smell, sight and sound food tells us stories about a region, its inhabitants, their culture, traditions and history. This culinary journey is beyond Kebabs and Biryanis or the food of the Royals. It is about culinary traditions developed in the kitchens of India by mothers and wives.
About the tour
In this specially designed journey of discovery one travels to the Eastern Indian states of Assam and West Bengal unravelling the culinary traditions of one of the most exotic and interesting part of India. The tour will start in Guwahati, a city in the state of Assam in Northeast India. Guwahati is well connected with all major cities in India so guests can easily arrive from Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore etc.
Places covered in tour
GUWAHATI - KAZIRANGA - JORHAT - MAJULI - DIBRUGARH - DARJEELING - KOLKATA
From Guwahati guests will proceed to other smaller towns of Assam unravelling the various culinary delights of Assamese food. Discover the usage, nutrition value and health benefits of different local spices and ingredients like ginger, garlic, turmeric, chillies, black pepper, mustard, cumin, fennel, aniseed, caraway, bamboo shoot, herbs etc. Village and farm visits will give an insight into how these ingredients are grown and there will also be cooking classes with local experts to learn delicious local curries and other dishes.
From the town of Dibrugarh in Upper Assam guests will fly to Bagdogra and then will proceed to the Himalayan town of Darjeeling by car. Darjeeling is a hill station developed during the British Raj in India. Darjeeling boasts of some of the oldest restaurents in India serving great Anglo Indian dishes. Darjeeling is also famous for the tea gardens and Darjeeling Tea.
Special add on : Guests will be visiting tea gardens in Assam and Darjeeling and do tea tasting with experts.
In the last leg of the tour, guests will travel to Kolkata, the capital of West Bengal and one of the oldest and most versatile cities of India. Known as the city of joy, Kolkata is a food lovers delight. Here guests will be hosted in the house of an expert Bengali homecook. But first your specialist guide will take you to a local market to see and know about the local vegetables and ingredients of Bengali food.
You will also do a street food tour and know about the various influences Bengali culture and food had from time to time.
Assam lies in the Northeastern part of India which shares a boundary with China, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal. It is a river valley surrounded by the Eastern Himalayas. Due to its location, there has been many waves of migration in the past of different races. This has resulted in a diverse ethnic population today having equally diverse and interesting food habits united by the common ingredients found in the region. Assam is immensely fertile as a gift of the river Brahmaputra and an ecological hotspot resulting in the availability of various foods and ingredients, herbs and spices. The staple diet being rice, fish, vegetables and herbs, the people also savour a variety of meats like chicken, duck, pork, pigeon, goat etc. Cooking styles range from steaming, boiling, smoking, barbeque to normal frying and currying.
Culinary traditions of Assam
(sour fish curry)
Roast meat on stick
Pitha / Rice cakes
King chilli or
Paddy & varieties of Rice
Lunch in a village
culinary traditions of bengal
In Bengal food is next only to worship. Here food is an aesthetic experience, a pursuit of happiness. The most significant aspect of Bengali food is fish - both freshwater and seawater. Different recipes are followed to cook different fishes. The most loved fish Hilsa is savoured with a mustard gravy, medium sized river prawns are cooked with coconut cream and big ones steamed with a mixture of mustard paste and Bengali spices, big fishes are cooked in different types of gravy. Wrapping in Banana leaf with spices and then steaming is a special style of cooking fish. The Bengal cuisine is marked by the use of mustard oil which gives it the signature flavor. Bengali food was also influenced by Mughal style of cooking. Mixing up with the local style of cooking new recipes were invented. The Kolkata dum Biriyani, Kosha Mangsho (mutton gravy), Kathi roll are some of the most popular dishes. Another significant aspect of Bengali food is the sweets. Bengali sweets specially the Rosogulla are immensely popular.