In Pictures: Traditional Kashmiri winter foods

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#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods

Sun-dried vegetables, locally known as Hokh Syuen, at a market in downtown Srinagar. Heavy snow during Chilai Kalan – the 40 harshest days of winter in Jammu and Kashmir – cuts the Valley off, and people consume sun-dried vegetables as fresh produce stores dwindle. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
During summer, vegetables are peeled, chopped, salted and sun-dried to preserve them for winter. These sun-dried vegetables are packed up for the winter months. Pictured here: dried brinjal or Wangan-Hachi. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

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#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
The various varieties of Hokh Syuen include dried tomatoes (Ruwangan Hache; above), Bottle Gourd (Al-Hache), Brinjal (Wangan Hache), Turnip slices (Gogji Hatche), Bamchoont Hache (Dried Quince Apple), dried Spinach (Huch Palak). (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
HokhGaed, or dried small fish, is sold in the markets of Kashmir during winters. These fish have a good shelf life and taste good when fried with spices. HokhGaed is served with rice and is a good source of protein. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

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#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
From the borders of saffron fields near Pampore the Saffron Kahwa comes another important Kashmiri winter dish: Harissa. A mixture of lean mutton and rice flavored with spices like fennel, cardamom and cloves, this breakfast dish is simmered in huge ovens over firewood for hours. It is then sprinkled with hot oil and topped with Kebab pieces. Harissa is traditionally eaten with freshly prepared Kandur Czot (Kashmiri bread). (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
Harissa with Kandur Czot. During the winter months, people queue up outside Harissa shops – the older shops are mostly located in the downtown areas of Srinagar, but with growing demand, these shops have come up in almost all the districts of J&K. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

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#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
Smoked fish, locally known as Phari, is an age-old winter delicacy of Kashmir. The reddish-brown smoked fish is believed to provide resistance against diseases related to the cold. It is available only from the onset of autumn in the Valley. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
After removing the offal, the fish caught in Dal Lake or other water bodies are dried. The fish are put on grass which is then torched to smoke the fish. The smoke keeps billowing until they roast perfectly. Phari are usually cooked with Kashmiri Haakh (collard greens) mixed with several spices. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
The fish for HokhGaed are dried under hygienic conditions during summers, by first placing them in a light cotton cloth and then drying them well in the sun. Consumed in winters, the dried fish is fried in mustard oil and tempered in a variety of condiments. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
Dried quince apple is one of the most cherished types of Kashmiri Hokh Syun. Special care is taken to select the best quality quince apples which are then sun-dried. Drying them out intensifies their flavour and gives them a unique texture. Dried quince apple is typically cooked with yogurt and meat. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
Al-Hachi is dried bottle gourd (above), Wangan-Hachi is dried Brinjal and Ruwangan-Hachi is dried tomato. These are sometimes cooked with meat or chicken and served with rice. Besides these spinach and turnip greens are sun-dried during autumn and then put into a cloth bag to avoid getting fungi. Ruwangan Hachi, also known as dried tomatoes, can be cooked with both Wangan Hachi and Al’e Hach. Ruwangan Hachi doesn’t lose its sour taste. It gives colour to a dish and fragrance. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
Handh or (Dandelion greens) is a wild leafy green that is dried in the sun, so it can be cooked in the winters as well. These greens are cooked with chicken. Traditionally, they are made in the house of a new mother as they are believed to generate heat in the body and benefit both the mother and the newborn. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
Gogji Aar or dried turnips are often cooked with cheese, eggs, mutton, etc. Turnips in this part of the world are dried in a very peculiar way: The turnips are peeled, washed and thickly sliced. Then a little hole is carved out in the middle of the slice using a pointed knife. All the slices are now strung up and sun-dried. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
Nadru (lotus stem) is cooked in various ways in Kashmir – often (and popularly) with spinach. The stems are deep-fried in mustard oil until crisp and golden brown, and mixed with spices and served hot with rice. Nadru cakes are also made and fried in mustard oil during winters in the Valley. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
Kahwa is a well-known winter beverage in Kashmir. It is a Kashmiri tea, very similar to green tea. Saffron, cloves, cinnamon and cardamom are the main ingredients used for making Kahwa. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
Some other ingredients used in kahwa are chopped dry fruits like almonds, cherry pistachios, or cashew nuts. It is usually served after meals in Kashmiri households. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
Traditionally, kahwa is prepared in a copper kettle known as samavar. A samavar has a central cavity in which live coals are placed to keep the tea hot. Around this cavity, there is a space for water to boil and the tea leaves and other ingredients are mixed with the water. The Saffron Kahwa served along the Srinagar-Jammu national highway near Pampore is famous, and tourists flock here for a sip of tradition. (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

#Dandelion greens, #Food and drink, #Kahwa, #Kashmir, #Nadur, #photos, #Tang Hachi, #Winter foods
In the Charar Sharief area of central Kashmir, dried pears, locally known as Tang Hachi, are considered a delicacy. In the hilly town of Budgam, in the bustling marketplace just outside the gateway of saint Noor ud Din Reshi (R.A), merchants set up kiosks to sell dried pears during winter.During the harvest season, pears are cut into small pieces before being sun-dried. The preparation is very simple, but the pears are dried properly, avoiding exposure to rain and high temperature. On the basis of taste and size, Tang Hachi are of three types—Wanhaet (having a moderate taste), Sirkhaet (sour and sugar free) and Farashi (having mouth-watering taste). (Photo by Irfan Amin Malik)

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