5 Versions Of Ema Datshi You Can Try While Visiting Bhutan
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 Ema Datshi is a popular food in Bhutanese cuisine, embodying the Himalayan region through its simplicity and bold flavours. The dish has gained popularity in recent days due to being a favourite of Bollywood film star Deepika Padukone. Rooted deeply in Bhutanese culture and tradition, Ema Datshi is more than just a dish; it's a cultural emblem that reflects the Bhutanese people's connection to their land and their love for spicy food.

The dish's foundation is remarkably straightforward, yet it yields a complex and satisfying experience for the palate. Green or red chilies, often sourced locally for their freshness and potency, are simmered gently with homemade Bhutanese cheese. However, there are various other types of ema datshi too, where the chillies are being replaced by other ingredients, which are worth exploring.

Kewa Datshi

Kewa Datshi, a popular variation of Ema Datshi, features potatoes as its star ingredient. This Bhutanese dish combines sliced potatoes, replacing the fiery green chilies, with rich local cheese, creating a harmonious blend of textures and flavours. The potatoes provide a comforting, starchy base, while the melted cheese envelops everything in creamy, savoury goodness. 

Shakam Datshi

Shakam Datshi, a variation of Bhutan's iconic Ema Datshi, features dried red meat instead of fresh chilies. Slow-cooked with onions, tomatoes, and a base of red or white rice, it blends smoky flavours with spicy heat. The dried beef adds a rich, savoury depth, complemented by the creamy texture of melted cheese, usually yak cheese or a substitute like cheddar. 

Semchung Datshi

Semchung Datshi, a variant of Bhutanese Ema Datshi, features beans immersed in a creamy cheese sauce. Tender beans, like green beans or yardlong beans, are simmered with Bhutanese cheese, creating a rich, velvety texture. The result is a harmonious blend of creamy flavours that highlights the natural sweetness of the beans. Semchung Datshi is typically enjoyed with red rice, offering a comforting and satisfying taste of Bhutanese culinary tradition.


Sikam Datshi

The dish combines tender chunks of dried pork with creamy Bhutanese cheese. This fusion creates a creamy flavour profile that is deeply satisfying for lovers of bold and hearty cuisines. Traditionally served with red rice, Sikam Datshi embodies Bhutan's culinary heritage, offering a memorable dining experience that showcases the country's distinctive flavours and ingredients.

Shamu Datshi

Prepared with fresh mushrooms simmered in a creamy cheese sauce made from Bhutanese yak cheese, it offers a rich, savoury flavour with a hint of tanginess. The dish combines the earthy essence of mushrooms with the sharpness of the cheese, creating a uniquely robust taste. Garnished with butter and served along with red rice, this becomes a very delicious version of the spicy ema datshi.