The Nepalese Food Tradition

15th August 2012

Whether you are planning on a sightseeing trip in Nepal or an adventurous trek to Mount Everest Base Camp, you need to become familiar with the food tradition practiced by the Sherpa’s and the people of Nepal. It is a good chance for people to try different delicacies that are native to another culture. But before embarking on their journey, it is better if tourists are prepared for what’s in store for them in the food department.

Nepal has a very rich food tradition that fosters a combination of all the necessary nutrients and energy that the body needs. The place also uses rice as its main food ingredient much like other countries in Asia such as the Philippines, Japan, or Thailand. The main course for their meal is the traditional Dal Bhat Tarkari. Dal is a lentil soup takes on a spicy taste. Bhat is the Nepalese word referring to boiled rice and Tarkari refers to curried vegetables and pickled fruits. For people who would like to consume meat they can opt for the curried or the dried meat together with their Tarkari. Side dishes can also be eaten together with the Dal Bhat Tarkari such as pickles known as archar and a spicy condiment called chutney. This traditional food is usually served with non-alcoholic beverages.


Seasoning is also very generous in the traditional Nepalese kitchen. People use mustard oil in cooking while they use various spices to flavor their curried delicacies such as turmeric, cloves, cumin, garlic, pepper, coriander, ginger, mustard seeds, black pepper, methi, cinnamon, sesame seeds, salt and bay leaves.


The Dal Bhat Tarkari is a very rich meal that provides the body with a well-balanced source of vitamins, fats, carbohydrates, minerals, and proteins. This staple meal is usually consumed two times a day in the morning and then late in the afternoon. Snacks can also be eaten in between meals and Nepal also consumes tea, coffee and other light snacks native to their culture.


A traditional delicacy that must be tried is Chinese style dumplings called momo. Made from dough of flour and water and filled with a variety of meat and vegetable fillings, momos are a delicious meal that are both steamed or fried. Momos generally eaten with a spicy sauce that contains red chilies.


If people are seeking to taste different flavors in Nepal, then they should visit during festivals as there is an abundance of the best dishes prepared during celebrations. For visitors who are still having second thoughts on consuming traditional Nepalese food, they can access other continental dishes or even dishes from different countries served in fast food carts, hotels and restaurants scattered around Nepal.


No matter what you are planning, it is still best if you are aware of the different delicacies that you can try in Nepal. Exploring the Himalayas and trekking the mountain peaks are exciting activities but people should still try to explore the traditions of the Sherpa and the food they usually consume. Their food might be one of the secrets why some of the Sherpa's are very good in trekking the summit. The well-balanced meal that Dal Bhat Tarkari offers might give the body a perfect boost to withstand the challenges that would be presented to them at the summit.

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