Unique cuisine of Spiti Valley
The Spiti Valley is a cold desert mountain valley located high in the Himalaya mountains in the north-eastern part of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. Spiti valley is a research and cultural centre for Buddhists. Up in the Spiti Valley region of the Himalayas, there are barely any roads, so the idea of street food is non-existent. In the higher reaches of Spiti, traditional Tibetan food is more readily available. Non-vegetarian food a predominant choice in Spiti Valley because of the extreme winter climate. In the summer months, vegetarian options are easily available due to fresh vegetables and fruits grown around in the fields. Locals pick fresh ingredients from the fields and organic food is widely available.
Traditional Tibetan food consist mainly of momos (dumplings). The dish is believed to be of Tibetan origin and is a type of steamed dumpling with some form of filling. Momo is usually served with a extra spicy dipping sauce. Momos or steamed dumplings are incredibly delicious everywhere in Spiti. Another authentic local cuisine of Spiti Valley is Thukpa (thick noodles in soup). Thukpa is a Tibetan noodle soup. Some names of Local Spitian food dishes are Tsampa, churpe, buckwheat chiltas, Pava and Khambir . As far as drinks are concerned Spiti Valley is famous for The Tibetian Butter Tea. Local alcoholic drinks and flavored teas, however, are an instant hit. Chhang, a kind of beer made from barley is available at mostly every home. The distilled form of Chhang called Arak is very potent. Spiti Valley also has very healthy seabuckthorn juice and jam which is locally called Tsetsalulu. Seabuckthorn is a highly nutritious wonder berry grown in the Himalayas, and drinks made from it are a rare specialty. Other than these, flavoured and aromatic teas such as those with garnishes of lemon, mint, ginger, honey are quite popular.
Thukpa Chhang Following are some of the restauarants in Spiti Valley that all tourists must dine in.
Dragon Restaurant located at Old Kaza, Spiti Valley is a must visit for all tourists. It serves Indian as weel as Tibetian food and the food here is inexpennsive. Sachin Kunga Restaurant Located right in the heart of the local market, the food at this place is better than most of the other restaurants in the vicinity. Cafe Kunzum Top serves local Spiti and Tibetan food, tasty momos, espresso coffee and compote made with local apples. Sol Café is located in the Main Bazar. The tea and coffee here have all the local flavors. They even add sea-buckthorn, which is again a local ingredient, to give you that feeling of Spiti food. The Himalayan Café also located near main market is a multi-cuisine restaurant which offers a travel lounge, live music, karaoke nights, multi-cuisine food, drinks, books and wi-fi. Yak Cafe is Just uphill from the bazaar serving the usual momos, pizza and Chinese, along with chicken Kiev and buffalo steak. Some other café and restaurants are Makang Restaurant German Bakery Kaza, Hotel Dupchen, Hotel Mehfil and Mahabudha Restaurant etc.