the appetizer:

Though vegetarian dishes featuring rice and a variety of beans dominate Indian cuisine, India's cooking has also been influenced by traders such as the Arabs and Chinese, and invaders such as the Persians, Mongols, Turks, British and Portuguese. North Indian food features more dairy and pulses, while South Indian cooking includes more rice, curries, and fruits like coconut.

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Indian food  


Menu Guide

Biryani: Meat and rice dish

Boti Kabab: Marinated lamb kabobs cooked in a tandoor

Cardamom: Seed with aromatic flavor—4 whole pods make 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom

Coriander: Available as a ground spice (ground coriander seeds) or fresh coriander leaves (also known as cilantro)

Chili Peppers: Jalapenos and milder Anaheim chili peppers

Chutney: Fresh relishes made with fruits, vegetables, and herbs

Dal: Dried beans, peas, and lentils—Can also be used to describe a dish prepared with legumes (such a creamy lentil soup)

Ghee: Clarified butter used in sauteeing and less commonly for deep frying

Gulab Jamun: Deep-fried cake balls served with aromatic syrups

Koftas: Lamb meatballs

Korma: Rich nut-based sauce used in lamb dishes

Kulcha: Flatbread often stuffed with onion or vegetables (potatoes and cilantro)

Kulfi: Sweet, aromatic ice cream made from pistachios

Masala: Spice mixture

Mattar Paneer: Curried peas (mattar) with cubes of paneer

Moghlai Kabab: Skewered lamb

Murgh Kari: Curried chicken

Naan: Flatbread made from wheat and baked in a tandoor

Pakoras: Deep-fried vegetables snack first dipped in chick-pea batter

Palak: Spinach

Paneer: Home-made cheese similar to firm ricotta

Paratha: Whole-wheat flatbread—sometimes meat-filled

Poppadums: Thin wafers made from lentils

Pulau: Indian version of pilaf

Puris: Deep-fried whole-wheat flatbreads

Raan: Leg of lamb marinated in yogurt-based masala

Rayta: Vegetable and yogurt salad

Roghan Josh: Rich lamb curry

Saag Curry: Aromatic curried dish made from greens (saag)

Saffron: An expensive yet important herb collected from the crocus flower—has a distinct flavor and also imparts orange color

Samosas: Deep-fried pastry appetizers filled with vegetable or meat mixtures

Sultana: Golden raisins used in Indian cooking

Seekh Kabab: Kabobs of ground lamb cooked in a tandoor

Tamarind: pulp of a fruit that resembles gigantic vanilla beans with a distinct sour-sweet flavor—used in marinades, sauces, and chutneys

Tandoori murgh: Chicken (murgh) cooked in a tandoor

Tikka kabobs: Skewered boneless chicken cutlets (tikka) cooked in a tandoor

Turmeric: slightly bitter ocher-yellow powder ground from boiled and dried rhizome

Wet Masala: A thick marinade "paste" for meats

Yogurt: Adds important texture and flavor to dishes—use plain yogurt for home-cooking



Indian Recipes

Indian Cookbooks

from Kate's Global Kitchen:


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This page modified January 2007