Haryanavis are fond of Gourds, Bottle Gourds and Bitter Gourds ( One will often find Gheeya, taurai, Tindas and Karela Preparations in Homes).
Dr. Ashish Dahiya, Professor & Ex-Director IHTM, M.D University Rohtak
Haryana is one of the wealthy states in India with humble and kindhearted people. The host population of Haryana is simple, straight forward, robust yet down to earth. The state is rich in dairy, agriculture, education and overall infrastructure. Haryanvi’s diet is Lacto – vegetarian one, People in this region prefer simple wholesome diet to compliment their hardworking daily schedule.
The salient feature of their food is that they consume a lot of milk, Milk Products (Curd, Butter Milk) and ghee. One thing is significant is people in Haryana are mostly vegetarian and eat Fresh Chutneys, Rotis often Haryana is also referred to as ‘The Land of Rotis”.
In Ain-i–Akbari, Abu’l Fazl mentions that in the Royal Mughal Kitchens, the Ghee used to come from Firoz-e-Hisar Present Hisar in Haryana. The famous Murrah Buffalo and Cows of the state ensure abundance of milk and milk products,
The plural cultural zones that the state of Haryana represented may easily be divided into five eco cultural zones which are defined by ethnicity, dialectical variations and ecology.
The social anthropologists have pointed out the peculiar features of Haryana in the five cultural zones which are: ‘ Ahirwal1, Mewat2, Bagar 3, Nardak 4 and Khadar5’. (Singh K.S – People of India- Haryana, Vol- XXIII)
The distinctive characteristics of these,“regions is increasingly getting blurred under the growing impact of the development process and the rise of a vibrant Haryanvi identity”. (Singh K.S, 1994: Pp XIII & XIV)
State Bird of Haryana is Black Partridge, State Animal is Black Buck, State Tree is Peepal and State Flower – Lotus.
In the agrarian culture of Haryana the staple diet encompasses of simple yet wholesome diet including:
· Whole Wheat Flour Chapattis (Smeared with Butter in Mornings and Ghee during day and night time)
· Besan Masala Roti
· Bajre Ki Roti (Millet Flour Bread)
· Churma: A popular sweet dish made in homes in Haryana with Rotis, Ghee, Shakkar/Gur/ Bura
· Wheat Dalia (Wheat Porridge)
· Bajre Ki Kichdi
· Methi Gazar (Fenugreek & Carrot): This is a common preparation in homes of Haryana, Made from Fenugreek Leaves and carrot.)
· Aloo Ganthe (Potato – Onion, both Dry & Wet) : This is a simple preparation of potatoes, onions tempered with cumin seeds with turmeric, spices and lemon)
· Aloo Tamatar Fod Ke (Potato – Tomatoes, both Dry & Wet) : This is a simple preparation of boiled potatoes mashed and tomatoes tempered with cumin seeds with turmeric and spices)
· Hara Dhania Cholia (Green Gram & Corriander) :green chana which is commonly found in Northern India. Hari Dhania Cholia is a mix of green chana and variety of vegetables. It is prepared with onion, tomato, red chili powder, cumin seeds, coriander leaves and turmeric. It is a rare and unique combination that is popular in Haryana.
· Aloo Dhania Cholia (Green Gram & Potatoes) :green chana which is commonly found in Northern India. Hari Dhania Cholia is a mix of green chana and Potatoes. It is prepared with onion, tomato, red chili powder, cumin seeds, coriander leaves and turmeric. It is a rare and unique combination that is popular in Haryana. This is seasonal vegetable preparation when the grams likely to be ready in farms but not dried. Infact, Holaye are prepared by keeping green gram plants on wood fire and the green grams are semi cooked with smoky flavor retaining juices/ moisture, eaten as is called Holaey or used in Chutneys both raw and Holey.
· Kadhi Pakoda – This is a simple yet very tasty dis usually prepared in summers with gram flour dumplings fried (Pakoda) and Gramflour Cooked in Butter Milk with Salt, Turmeric and Red Chillies. Tempered with onion/ Fenugreek Seeds in mustard oil.
· Raabdi: An authentic Haryanvi dish prepared with Wheat or Jon Flour mixed in buttermilk fermented for some time leaving in sun and cooked on flame like Kadhi, popularly consumed in summers with onion & butter milk or chilled milk.
· Hara Saag: Sarson – Mustard Leaves, Bathua, Spinach Optional cooked with Alan of Besan or Flour to give consistency tempered with Onion and Garlic usually eaten in winters.
Haryanavis are fond of Gourds, Bottle Gourds and Bitter Gourds ( One will often find Gheeya, taurai, Tindas and Karela Preparations in Homes)
Ker/ Teet ki Sabzi – This is popular in southern Haryana where Ker/ Teet is soaked overnight in water/ butter milk then cooked and tempered with spices. Its pickle is also very popular.
· Mixed Dal is a staple diet in Haryana. It is basically a blend of four to five protein-richdals including chana, toor, masoor and moong. Prepared in pure desi ghee,
Sweets: Ghee Bura ; Ghee Shakkar, Malai Bura, Malai – Shakkar will make any Haryanvi Nostalgic, A childhood savory, bura (powdered sugar), roti and ghee/ Malai is a sweet dish served to children mother during a nice hearty meal.
Pudas : Made of pouring consistency batter of wheat flour/ sugar/Gur shallow fried on griddle with Ghee are called pudas, extremely popular in Monsoons served with Mango Pickle or even eaten with Kheer
Kheer with Shakkar, Atta Halwa, Atta – Besan & Suji Halwa are popular desserts. Even Gur ke Chawal are very popular.
Kassar – is a special sweet dish served during a wedding (Bhat) ceremony it is Coarse Whole Wheat Flour is dry cooked on a gridlle till light golden brown served with ghee and shakkar
During Monsoons – Ghewar is very popular however not prepared in home. The monsoon home preparations include: Swali, Namak Pare, Dhakkar Pare & Gulgule
Beverages: Include Chaach (Butter Milk, Sweet Lassi, Thandai, Laassii – 1/3 Mlik, 2/3 Water, Khand (Unrefined Ground Sugar)
Raitas: Bathuae Ka raita (in Winters) Aloo Ka raita, Lauki / Gheeya Ka Raita/ Boondi ka Raita/ Doonghri Ka Raita – Smoke Falvoured, Pudinae ka Raita are few popular raitas
Chutneys: Allo with Garlic and Butter Milk; Aloo Pyaz, Kaachri ki Chatni, Pudina Pyaaz Ki Chatni, garlic Red Chilly Chutney
Haryanvi Thali: In rural areas of Haryana people usually consume two meals a day. One about 09-10.00 AM and other around 06-07.00 PM. Dinner mostly constitute one pot meals. In summers Porridge or Kichdi is at least cooked once in week. Haryanvi Thali represents simplicity in terms of vegetables , kadhi , pulses and chutneys. Vegetables are replaced from season to season.
Dishes in Haryanvi Thali are:
· Kachri (Sane) ki sabji
· Kadhi (with/ withoutout gram flour dumplings)
· Mixed Lentils curry or daal
· Methi Gajar ki sabji
· Bajre ki Roti/ Besan Masala Roti
· Hara dhania Cholia
· Mithe Chawal
· Churma/ halwa/ Kheer Shakkar
· Teet/ Aam ka achar (Pickle of Kair tree fruit)
· Tamatar Chutney/ Raita