Zaeka-e-Kahmir or Kashmiri Cuisine

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Written By Santana

Unveiling India's Treasures from the eyes of an insightful author

Kashmiri Cuisine: Just like the beautiful picturesque of the place, the Kashmiri cuisine will leave you longing for more of it. The state offers a few of the most delectable non-vegetarian dishes, which are authentic to this region.

Highly reassembling the Mughlai cuisine, the Kashmiri cuisine is primarily non-vegetarian. There is a lot of usage of Indian spices in the recipes. There are some mouthwatering vegetarian delicacies, also.

Here are our top 10 picks from Kashmiri cuisine-

01. Rogan Josh

A signature Kashmiri cuisine made out of tender lamb or meat with robust Indian spices and yogurt flavors, Rogan Josh is a low-fat aromatic dish that will make you yearn for more of it.

Kashmiri red chili powder and oodles of aromatic ghee are added to the preparation to make it mouthwatering.

This royal delicacy tastes best with Kashmiri kulcha for white rice. The recipe came from the Silk Route.

Where to find Rogan Josh in Kashmir- Mughal Darbar Bakery and Restaurant, Residency Road, Srinagar, Kashmir.

Kashmiri Cuisine
Indian copper dishes with homemade rogan josh, white and yellow rice, and a salad

02. Kashmiri Kulcha

Kulcha, or refined wheat flour-baked bread, is a traditional kiln of Kashmir. It is extremely common as breakfast in the region. It is smeared with butter and best complemented with kaahwa or sheer chai.

Where to find the best Kashmiri Kulcha- Rawalpindi

Kashmiri Cuisine
Roti with green curry

03. Kaahwa

An alternative to regular tea, Kaahwa is much lighter and sweeter. It is made by boiling the delectable Kashmiri green tea for a few minutes and adding a hint of cardamom and cinnamon. It is a must-have dish for Kashmiri people.

Where to find Kaahwa in Kashmir- Tea shops in Srinagar

Kashmiri Cuisine

04. Kashmiri Dum Aaloo

Kashmiri Dum Aaloo is famous across the country. Golden crisp boiled, then fried potatoes are cooked with yogurt and Kashmiri red chili powder. Small-sized potatoes are used for the recipe.

There are various versions of the recipe. It is a sumptuous treat for every food lover out there.

Where to find the best Kashmiri Dum Aaloo- Shamyana Restaurant, Boulevard Road, Srinagar.

Kashmiri Dum aloo

05. Goshtaba

A royal dish made with minced meat, yogurt, and a plethora of Indian spices, the Goshtaba is a must-have dish in Kashmir.

Where to find the best Goshtaba in Kashmir- The Grandstand, 5th floor, Palm Island Mall, Jammu.

06. Butter Tea

While on a trip to Kashmir, do not forget to taste the famous Tibetan Butter Tea. It is prepared by adding butter and salt to tea. It is an integral part of Kashmiri cuisine. It keeps the body warm and is extremely popular in Leh and Ladakh colder regions.

07. Modhur Pulav

Modhur Pulav is Kashmiri rice sweetened with sugar and ghee. Saffron, milk, cinnamon, dried foods, and cardamom are a few of the other important ingredients for the recipe. Kashmir has abundant growth of saffron, also used in the recipe from which the dish gets its flavor. The dish will leave you craving more.

08. Yakhni

Kashmiri Yakhni is a traditional dish known for its rich, aromatic flavor. The dish is made with yogurt, meat (usually lamb or chicken), and a blend of spices, including fennel seeds, cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves.


To make Kashmiri Yakhni, the meat is first cooked in water with various spices until it is tender. The broth is then strained, and the meat is set aside. In a separate pan, the yogurt is whisked with a bit of flour to create a smooth mixture, which is then added to the broth. The dish is simmered until the sauce thickens and the flavors have melded together.

Kashmiri Yakhni is often served with rice or naan bread and is a popular dish during special occasions such as weddings and festivals. It is also a comfort food that locals and visitors enjoy.

The dish is believed to have originated in Persia and was brought to Kashmir by Mughal rulers. It has since become a staple of Kashmiri cuisine and is enjoyed by people across the region. Using yogurt and spices gives the dish a unique flavor that differentiates it from other meat-based dishes.

The other ingredients include black and green cardamom, onion paste, dry mint, and fennel seeds. It is best complimented with white rice.

Where to find Yakhni in Kashmir- Mughal Darbar Bakery and Restaurant, Residency Road, Srinagar, Kashmir.

09. Kashmir Muji Gaad

Kashmiri Muji Gaad is a traditional Kashmiri dish made with fish and radish. Muji means radish, and Gaad means fish in the Kashmiri language.

To make Muji Gaad, a fish, usually carp or trout, is cooked in a broth with various spices such as fennel seeds, ginger, and asafoetida. The fish is then removed from the broth and set aside.

The grated radish is sautéed in oil in a separate pan until it is lightly browned. The fish broth is then added to the pan along with the cooked fish. The dish is simmered until the radish is tender, absorbing the fish broth and spices flavors.

Muji Gaad is often served with rice or naan bread and is a popular dish in Kashmiri cuisine. The use of radish gives the dish a unique flavor and texture, while the fish adds protein and a depth of flavor to the broth. It is a hearty and satisfying dish that is enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.

Overall, Muji Gaad is a delicious example of the rich culinary traditions of Kashmir. The dish is a testament to the creativity and ingenuity of Kashmiri cooks, who have perfected the art of using local ingredients to create flavorful and satisfying dishes.

10. Aab Gosht

Kashmir is heaven for mutton lovers. There is no end to mutton curries and dishes in the state; they are all delicious.

Aab Gosht is one such mutton delicacy and is made in two ways in Kashmir: the authentic Kashmiri style and the Iranian style. It is prepared by adding milk and spices to the gravy. It is best served with rice dishes.

Where to find Aab Gosht in Kashmir- Mughal Darbar Bakery and Restaurant, Residency Road, Srinagar, Kashmir.

11. Thupka

This is another authentic Kashmiri delicacy popular in the Leh region. Thupka is a thick noodle-based soup with vegetables added. It is a delight in the cold climate of Kashmir. There are different varieties to the dish like egg thupka, chicken thupka, mushroom thupka, etc.


Thukpa is a traditional noodle soup that originated in Tibet and is popular in the Himalayan regions of Nepal, Bhutan, and Northeast India, including Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh.

To make Thukpa, thin wheat noodles are cooked in a flavorful broth that usually contains a variety of vegetables, meat (usually chicken or beef), and spices such as garlic, ginger, and chili peppers. The dish can be customized to suit individual tastes and preferences, with some variations including eggs, tofu, or different types of meat.

Thukpa is a comforting and nourishing dish prevalent during cold weather. It is often served with a side of momos, which are traditional Tibetan dumplings and is enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. Thukpa has become increasingly popular outside of the Himalayan region and can now be found in restaurants and cafes worldwide.

Thupka tastes best when savored in the local shops in the mountains

12. Paba and Tangdur

Another staple and traditional food of the Ladakh region, Paba, is made using peas, wheat, black bean, etc. The dough is flavored using roasted flour of wheat or buckwheat. Paba is served with Tangdur, which is buttermilk with fresh wild vegetables.

Paba is a fermented rice cake that is made by the Adi tribe. To make Paba, cooked rice is mixed with a starter culture of rice beer and left to ferment for several days. The fermented rice mixture is then formed into small cakes and steamed until cooked. Paba is slightly sour and often served with meat or vegetable stews.

Tangdur is a dish made with fermented bamboo shoots popular among the Apatani tribe. To make Tangdur, fresh bamboo shoots are sliced and mixed with salt and chili peppers. The mixture is then left to ferment for several days until it develops a tangy flavor. The fermented bamboo shoots are then cooked with meat or vegetables to make a flavorful stew, often served with rice.

Both Paba and Tangdur are unique and flavorful dishes that showcase the rich culinary traditions of Arunachal Pradesh. They are not widely known outside the region but are highly valued by the local communities who have been making and enjoying them for generations.

13. Thenthuk

Thenthuk is another noodle soup from the Leh region, with the only difference being that in Thenthuk, any and every noodle size is added. Yak meat pieces as also added to the soup to make it even more delicious.

This again tastes best when you have it from the local shops in the mountains in the Leh region.

14. Khambir

A pan-shaped local bread from the region of Ladakh, Khambir is made from local whole wheat. It is savored with Butter Tea.

Kashmiri cuisine will keep you longing for more of it. Heaven for non-vegetarians with the best of mutton delicacies across the nation, Kashmir is a must-visit place for every foodie.

Also Read: Handicrafts of Jammu and Kashmir

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