The famous ‘mountain kingdom, or Sikkim, is known for its scenic beauty manifested in deep, plunging, verdant valleys, soaring snow-capped mountain ranges, mural-filled monasteries, magnificent Hindu shrines, and warm-hearted people. Another element that separates Sikkim from its sister states is its delectable food. The food of Sikkim is made using organic local ingredients like ancient grains, root vegetables, and red meats. The food is cooked in a way that carries a unique flair. It is fun to enjoy, explore, and taste its culinary delights.
It is right that the best way to understand the culture of a place is its food. Locally-sourced ingredients give an authentic flavour that is missing in the food of neighbouring states. Here we have rounded up a list of some of the most delectable and traditional food of Sikkim that will leave your mouth watering.
Sikkimese food is a delight to savour. Many dishes are available at local restaurants, cafes, and eateries. When visiting the state, enjoy the culinary delights available here. Savour stews, dumplings, soups, meats, and tasteful vegetables full of unique Sikkimese flavours.
A lip-smacking bread dish, Sel Roti, is usually prepared during Tihar, a famous Hindu festival celebrated in Nepal. Its unique circular shape makes it stand apart from other bread delicacies. It is usually served with a meat-based curry. Mildly sweet in taste, it is made with rice flour added with some spices. Pure ghee is added to the batter before it is fried in oil until golden brown.
Also Read - Famous Festivals In Sikkim
It is a very famous food of Sikkim enjoyed by the locals and people residing in nearby states of India and countries like Bangladesh and Nepal. It is a lentil soup and steamed rice combination. It is enjoyed as a daily fare by many locals of Sikkim. Although this dal chawal dish is commonly prepared in the country's northern parts, the one prepared in Sikkim is differentiated by its unique flavours. This comfort meal easily satiates the taste palette of food lovers. Dal Bhaat is the right choice if you wish to enjoy a light meal.
One of Sikkim’s famous food, Thukpa, is a perfect antidote to chilly weather. It is a flavoursome noodle soup that is believed to have originated in the eastern parts of Tibet. This dish from Sikkim seems to lead the culinary bandwagon with its unique flavour, texture, and aroma. Every street kiosk and vendor in Sikkim offers Thukpa. This staple food of Sikkim is prepared with chopped onions, garlic, green chillies and a dash of tang and spices. The soup is available in both vegetarian and non-vegetarian versions. Beat the chilly weather with piping hot and steamy noodle soup.
Also Read - Best Places To Visit In Sikkim
An eclectic blend of bread, deep-fried flavours and packed with minced meat, this food of Sikkim is undoubtedly a must-try cuisine for non-veg lovers. This dish is believed to have originated from Tibet but has become a famous dish in Sikkim today. The pastry or the bread is stuffed with a mixture of cabbage, ground beef, and a variety of spices. It is neatly folded into a semi-circular shape and deep-fried until golden brown. Crispy and crunchy to the core, the flavouring of minced meat seems to melt in the mouth. These days, the Tofu version is available for vegetarians.
An ultimate favourite, Momos is an original Tibetan delicacy. Although a Tibetan delicacy, it has now embraced typical Sikkimese flavours. This scrumptious snack is also a popular Sikkim street food, available at street kiosks and restaurants. This succulent dumpling is filled with various fillings, like cheese, meat, and vegetables. These are steamed in a momo-maker. It has three levels, with tomato juice at the lowest layer. Relish the juicy and mouth-melting taste of momos with chilly chutney.
Also Read - Best Treks In Sikkim
It is another non-vegetarian delicacy worth savouring. A cuisine of Sikkim, Phagshapa is a dish made up of pork fat, red chillies, and radishes. These fat strips are cooked and kept separate. The stew is made using spices and radishes, and later red chillies and pork is added as a final touch. These spices are added for a tangy and chilly taste. No oil is added to the dish. It's a perfect blend of proteins and vegetables, thus becoming a healthy meal.
It is a famous drink made up of millet. Yeast is added to speed up the process of fermentation. Also referred to as Thomba, it is a traditional drink of people residing in Eastern Nepal. It is an alcoholic drink brewed locally. Enjoy it with a bamboo pie. This drink is available at a very low price and is prepared in local distilleries.
Also Read - Best Monasteries In Sikkim
Commonly cooked by people in hilly regions, it is prepared by combining okra and nettle leaves. It is a typical and traditional Sikkimese cuisine served with piping hot steamed rice. This soup not only helps combat winter chill but also has a lot of therapeutic value. It helps in easing pain in joints and muscles. It also takes care of health issues like gout, anaemia, arthritis, and eczema.