24 September, 2020

Mirpakaya Mango Moghuls

Hyderabad to Vijayawada, it’s a trip from tangy to the fiery-hot

A. Prabhakar Rao
Mirpakaya Mango Moghuls

I am, I must confess, an accidental food writer. It all started with a one-off food story, which led to another, and another...till now I’m being asked to write culinary books and host TV shows. But, truth be told, my idea of the perfect meal is a simple, crisp dosa, accompanied by a favourite book. Hence this culinary drive from Hyderabad to Vijayawada turned out for me to be more of a journey through history and geography, with random diversions through politics and trivia.

Hyderabad is one of the important centres of Mughlai cuisine, along with Delhi, Lahore, Lucknow and, perhaps, Rampur. But there’s an important difference: by the time the 50-year-long Deccan campaign ended, the cuisine that the Mughal armies had brought with them had evolved, through its interaction with the southern climate, ingredients, peoples and cuisines. Most notably, it acquired a distinctive tangy undercurrent, thanks to a variety of sour flavourings, from tamarind to green mango. Thus, biriyanis, qormas and kababs are all very well, but the...



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