Chilka Roti To Dhuska: Exploring Jharkhand’s Breakfast Menu
Image Credit: Shutterstock, Chilka Roti

Well-known for waterfalls, temples, and wildlife, Jharkhand’s culinary affairs are the lesser-known aspects of the state. While certain parts of the region belong to primitive tribal communities, with their own set of rituals and cultural practices, in cities like Ranchi, you will find the real authentic cuisine of Jharkhand. Based on natural produce and locally available ingredients, most of the dishes prepared in the region are rich in taste and nutrition.

Be it their flatbreads like rotis and parathas or pancakes, the breakfast menu in Jharkhand is a delightful treat. Specific items usually find place in the breakfast thali of Jharkhand with few alterations based on the city as well as the season. Since Jharkhand belongs to the Eastern side of the country, it has influences of both North and South. The abundance of rice produced in the region is the reason behind extensive consumption of the grain across meals i.e. breakfast, lunch and dinner. This is in consonance with the southern parts of the country that enjoy rice equally.

Similarly, the North Indian obsession with rotis and parathas is no stranger to us. From flavoured flatbreads to stuffed ones, there is a huge variety for breakfast breads in the north. Following suit, Jharkhand too loves their bread. Take the Chilka Roti, for instance. The nutritious crepes from the region are closer to a crepe than a roti. Made with rice and chana dal, the soft crepes are served hot alongside a chana dal chutney for breakfast usually.

The overnight soaked mixture of the two components of this dish is what lends it the soft texture and it often features on special occasions with an elephant foot yam curry. While the Chilka Roti is well-known for its nutritional values, providing carbs and proteins, there is yet another flatbread that is popular in both Jharkhand and Bihar. Sattu Ka Paratha is a rich and high-protein breakfast option in the region. Made with sattu flour, that is a combination of ground pulses like chana dal or Bengal gram and several other cereals, the paratha is rolled out and served with a bowl of curd.

Taking inspiration from foreign cultures, several parts of India are also home to pancakes i.e. flatcakes. From Kashmir to Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand, the pancakes are given a desi twist in many states. The latter makes pancakes, called Dhuska. The poori-like pancake is a deep-fried delight that is stuffed with rice flour, gram and black lentil. Usually paired with a spicy potato or gram curry, the Dhuska is a savoury bread that is often prepared for breakfast as well as during festive occasions like Holi.  

Not just Jharkhand, Dhuska’s fanfare reaches several parts of Eastern India like Bengal and Bihar. While flatbreads and pancakes are a part of the Jharkhand breakfast thali, there’s an interesting dish that finds place on the thali too. Popularly known as pitha, you would find sweet versions across Odisha, Bengal, and Jharkhand. However, it is the savoury version or the namkeen pitha that commonly features in breakfast. The steamed dumplings made from rice flour are stuffed with potatoes, carrots and peas and spruced up with spices. This is usually eaten with mint chutney. From Chilka Roti to Dhuska and Namkeen Pitha, there are plenty of dishes that Jharkhand has to offer during breakfast.