Bangladeshi Food

Topics: Bengali cuisine, Indian cuisine, Spice Pages: 2 (687 words) Published: May 31, 2013
Bangladesh shares a common Bengali culture, language and history with its neighbors in the nearby Indian state of West Bengal. This shared culture also carries over to its food – many dishes are shared across borders and are commonly referred to as Bengali cuisine (food). Bangladeshi cuisine is absolutely South Asian in nature. However, it’s unique in its abundant use of fish and its employment of a variety of often fiery pastes made from ground roots, spices and chilies. So fiery they are, we’re told, that even some visiting Indians can’t handle the heat. Fish: Bangladesh is a country of rivers so perhaps it’s no surprise that fish is a staple of Bangladeshi food. There’s a common saying: “Fish and rice make a Bengali” (Machh-e-bhat-e-Bangali). Often fish is fried in spice paste to enable the flavors to settle in.For Bangladeshis, not any fish will do. A river fish, be it from fresh or salt water, is the most highly valued. To Bangladeshis, sea fish just don’t offer the same flavor. Ground pastes: Bangladeshi cuisine incorporates the use of pastes – spices and roots ground smooth. Green chili peppers are ubiquitous in Bangladeshi cuisine. Other common pastes include a combination of any of the following: ginger, garlic, red chili peppers, turmeric, onion, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, or mustard seed. (South Asian cuisine aficionados will note the use of popped spices as a foundation of Indian dishes as distinctly different from that of Bangladeshi cuisine.) Mustard oil: Traditional Bengali cuisine makes frequent use of mustard oil which imparts an inimitable bitterness. You can definitely taste this in bhorta, uniquely Bangladeshi balls of mashed vegetables. Although mustard oil is still commonly used throughout Bangladesh, people are making the switch to more neutral vegetable oils. Bhorta: Mashed potatoes (or other vegetables) often mixed with shrimp or fish. Usually made with onion, green chili peppers, cilantro and mustard oil — lending it an intense flavor....
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