What To Eat In Coorg During The Monsoon Season?
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Coorg, also known as Kodagu in Karnataka, is a popular place along the western ghats of India to visit for travel because of its lush green environment and the acres of coffee plantations. Coorg is primarily famous for its coffee plantations but when you visit the place, your experience will go beyond the cup of coffee. The local cuisine and use of vibrant and robust spices make it an amazing experience for those who are food enthusiasts. The culture and cooking styles of dishes make them a great deal different from all other types of food available throughout the world, creating diversity.

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Coorg cuisine, deeply rooted in the traditions of the Kodava people, is characterised by its bold flavours and use of locally sourced ingredients. At the heart of every meal lie the region's famed spices, harvested from the fertile soil that nurtures not just coffee but also pepper, cardamom, and an array of aromatic herbs. These spices infuse Coorg dishes with a robustness that is both distinctive and comforting, offering a culinary experience that resonates with authenticity.

Therme Thoppu Palya

This comforting dish features tender fiddlehead ferns being stir-fried, which are slowly vanishing from modern eating habits. The leaves are finely chopped and cooked with onions and a blend of spices, including mustard seeds, cumin, and turmeric, creating a fragrant and flavorful dish. Cover the dish so that the ferns get soft and lastly, add kachampuli to it before stirring it a little and serving. In a meal, this dish is served as the first item with steaming white rice, which becomes a very heart-warming dish during the monsoon. 

Kummu Curry

Made with fresh mushrooms, the dish features a blend of earthy flavours thanks to a mix of Coorg spices, grated fresh coconut, and mushrooms. The mushrooms are sautéed with onions, garlic, and green chillies, then simmered in a rich, spiced coconut jeera and garlic gravy. The result is a hearty, aromatic curry that perfectly complements the cool, rainy weather. Serve it with steamed rice or akki rotti, and enjoy the comforting, robust flavours of this seasonal favourite.

Chutta Yarchi

This dish features succulent chunks of pork, marinated in a blend of traditional spices and smoky flavours, then char-grilled to perfection. The ingredients include garlic, ginger, chillies, and a touch of Coorg's signature vinegar, kachampuli, which adds a unique tangy depth. The smoky, spicy, and tangy notes make Chutta Yarchi a perfect companion for the cool, rainy weather, offering a comforting and flavourful experience that captures the essence of Coorg's culinary heritage.

Maddh Paayasa

This is a medicinal pudding from the Coorg region, also known as maddh koolu, which features the main ingredient, the leaf extract from maddhu thoppu or Justicia Wynaadensis. Apart from this, there are other elements too, like rice, freshly grated coconut, jaggery, and cardamom.

The maddhu thoppu extract is made by slowly boiling the leaves in water on low heat for many hours until a deep purple-coloured extract is formed. Later, the rice is slow-cooked with the extract of maddhu thoppu for many hours by gradually adding the remaining ingredients and reducing to form a porridge-like consistency. This pudding is served with a dollop of ghee as garnish during the Aati month of the monsoon season. 

Baimbale Curry

Made from tender bamboo shoots, the curry combines the earthy flavours of fresh coconut, spicy green chillies, and aromatic curry leaves. The bamboo shoots are cooked to perfection in a blend of jeera, red chillies, onion, coconut and other spices. This hearty, flavorful curry is typically served with steamed rice or akki rotti with a dollop of ghee, offering a comforting, warming experience ideal for the cool, rainy days in Coorg.

Kaad Maange Curry

This delightful curry features wild mangoes, known for their tangy and slightly sweet flavor. The marinated mangoes are cooked with the basic spices: chillies, curry leaves, jaggery, and a spice made from grinding coriander seeds, fenugreek, mustard and cumin. It achieves a perfect balance of sweet, sour, and spicy notes. The curry is often garnished with fresh coriander and served with steamed rice or akki rotti, making it a comforting and flavourful meal that captures the essence of Coorg's lush, rainy season.

Koile Meen Curry

Made with fresh catch from local paddy fields and streamlets, the fish is cooked in a rich coconut-based curry infused with Coorg's signature spices like black pepper, coriander, and turmeric. The dish features a paste made from garlic, tomato and onion, which becomes the base of the dish. Served hot with steamed rice or akki roti, it's a comforting meal that captures the essence of Coorg's culinary heritage amidst the rainy season's misty charm.