Idli, dosa, vada, sambar, uppama! As with all Indian food, a meal centres on a base of rice, or as in the South –Indian case, semolina preparation. Eaten alongside is the South-Indian dal, sour, hot, souped -up with vegetables. The Brahmins are vegetarian, but the rest consume sour-hot fish, mutton and chicken with gusto. True home of Indian vegetarianism, is the land of the delicious recipies. Tamilian’s staple diet is steamed rice and most of their food consists of grains, lentils and vegetables. ‘Sadhams’ (rice dishes) with different flavour s are their specialty. Spices are added for most dishes to give a distinctive taste. Coconut, tamarind, asafeotida are a must for most vegetarian dishes. Desserts such as burfis and payasams are also popular.
There is no one distinguished style of Tamilian cooking. And for those wanting to taste something different, there are some orthodox communities who prepare delicious food without using onion, garlic and some spices. The menu also magnifies according to the different festivals of the region. To get a sample of the tasty cuisine one can participate in the celebrations of Pongal also popularly known as Makar Sankranti, when the food prepared is delicious.