Reminiscing The Lost Recipes Of India
Image Credit: Freepik

As India undergoes development, lifestyles undergo such significant changes that these changes are also reflected in the style of cooking. Due to this, some of the most iconic dishes that once delighted the cuisine for several generations have been lost. Numerous dishes, which have been passed down through the centuries but are currently at risk of disappearing, can be found from the isolated areas of the northeast to the southern shore.

There might be several reasons for this. Every century, the culinary landscape of a region changes completely. The diversity of cultures and cuisines is so vast in India that at every 100 kilometres, one gets to experience a new culture and its distinct culinary tradition. The same set of ingredients is employed in various ways, contributing to a unique flavour profile in each dish.

Over the course of many decades, certain dishes have either vanished from the daily meals of the common man or lost their significance due to the scarcity of specific hard-to-get ingredients. Additionally, the intricate preparation processes and time constraints have led to the gradual fading away of these culinary delights.

To reminisce about these lost gems, this article features a list of five such recipes that one can make and bring the taste of lost tradition to their plate.

1) Nargil Shorba

This is a vegetarian Mughal dish that made its way to India back in the Mughal era. It is native to the Middle East and Central Asia and is not seen in India much in today's date. This soup uses coconut milk as the base, and the green colour is because of coriander leaves and green chillies. This shorba recipe uses minimal spices and is an absolute delight to the tastebuds.

2) Kibti

Kibti is a rare recipe and originated in the kitchen of Maharaja of Patiala. This dish features chicken as its main ingredient. Although the modern vegetarian versions also feature potato in the dish, To make the traditional variation with chicken, marinate the chicken in yoghurt, spices, and ginger-garlic paste. Cook the chicken pieces in ghee until tender. Add red chilli and coriander powder. Finish with saffron, ghee, and almond slivers for a flavorful Kibti delight.

3) Dal farra 

Dal farra is a traditional dish of Varanasi, and it has been loved by local people for ages, though it is not much known outside the borders of Uttar Pradesh. This dish is made with steamed dumplings of lentil dough that is fried or served by dipping in a thick, spicy curry. 

To make this, soak a blend of chana, urad, and matar dal, grind with garlic and chilies, and mix with spices. Create small puris, fill with the dal mixture, steam, then sauté in mustard seeds, hing, and curry leaves for a flavourful Farra.

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4) Country Captain Chicken

This dish is as unique as its name sounds. Country captain is a unique Southern chicken and rice dish, blending Indian and American influences.  The process involves marinating chicken thighs in spices like curry powder and garam masala. The chicken is then browned and baked with a seasoned mix of tomatoes, onions, celery, and green peppers. Infused with thyme, bay leaf, and the essential curry powder, this recipe is so mouthwatering! Lastly, it is served over aromatic Carolina gold rice and garnished with almonds and bacon. 

5) Murg Musallam

A classic dish originating from kitchens of Mughal era, Murgh musallam is a culinary delight whose name translates to ‘whole chicken.’ This dish involves marinating a whole chicken in ginger garlic paste and then stuffed with boiled eggs. After that, it is seasoned with spices like saffron, cinnamon, cloves, poppy seeds, cardamom and chilli. The dish can be prepared either dry or in a sauce, and it is often adorned with almonds and silver leaves.


This article features five lost recipes of India that are lost due to transitions in the way of living of many. Although the list is vast and can be continued forever, the top five recipes are here that anyone can easily make in the home kitchen.