I have never eaten as much food in one day as I had on my first day in India. It was not due to wanting to eat a lot of food, but due to Indian culture around food.
I learned that Indian meals rather contain of lots of small dishes, instead of one big dish which is typical in New Zealand. It’s a mixture of flavour, textures and spices.
Our first meal out, was a Thali – a platter that is made up of several different dishes to create a perfectly balanced meal. For as little as $12 per person, we enjoyed an all you can eat Thali buffet. As soon as I finished one dish on the plate, the waiters came around to refill it again. The first round was amazing; following the recommended combinations of sauces with different curries and roti’s; I felt cultured. If I recall correctly, it was at least my 5th round and I was stuffed. Roast chicken filled with stuffing stuffed. Don’t get me wrong, half me loves food and wants to take on as much of the Indian culture while living here, but the other half of me doesn’t like to waste food unnecessarily. It was delicious yet I knew I couldn’t eat like that every day. I needed a range of food groups to balance my nutrition.
Looking out from my accommodation balcony, the trees are covered in dust, the concrete is covered in dust; imagine what the fresh fruit and vegetables are like. After a few days of eating in India, my fruit and vegetable food group had gone out the window. I struggled and am struggling, to eat enough of that food group. I can hear the sound of a crisp apple bite or juicy pineapple. Yet that sound is 5 weeks away.
Nonetheless, the food here is authentic and cheap. I picture myself being sick of Indian food by the time I get back to New Zealand, yet in the meantime, I’ll order one more round.