When it comes to business or food, Sindhis rightly make it to the top of these lists. Sindhi cuisine is all about comfort & flavour. There are a whole lot of varieties in every kind of meal one could think of! And here are the Top 15 must-have Vegetarian Sindhi Delicacies!
1. Dal Pakwan (Lentils and Crisps)
Dal Pakwan is a classic Sindhi delicacy that stands out like none other. The dish has a plain but well balanced in salt, Chana dal. That makes it a beautiful base for the spicy, sour tempering, & crunchy toppings. Finely chopped tomatoes, onions and various spices make its tempering. Pouring a spicy mint & coriander green chutney; sprinkling some freshly cut onion with some red chilly powder on top, the Dal is ready. Pakwan, a deep-fried, crispy, golden brown, and usually round in shape side serves as its heavenly accompaniment. Because it makes for a beyond perfect combination with the flavourful dal.
2. Kadhi Chawar ain Aloo Tukk (Curry-Rice, and Uniquely fried potatoes)
A bowl of steaming hot Sindhi Curry & Rice, with some Aloo Tukk is pure delight. Sindhi Kadhi is rightly one of the most famous Sindhi dishes. The Kadhi is made with besan (chickpea flour) and hurba (fenugreek seeds), which are roasted in some oil before making a smooth paste. Then, tomatoes and a whole lot of veggies like potatoes, okra, cluster beans, cauliflower etc. are added to it. Once brought to a boil, further cooked until various veggies release their tastes into the curry. It is mildly spicy and extremely delicious. Plain Basmati Rice goes well with this flavoursome goodness. Aloo Tukk is a unique Sindhi speciality. They’re potatoes cut in thick slices, slit crisscross. These make them even crispier when deep-fried twice in hot oil; they also let the mixed spices nicely absorb in the potatoes.
3. Saayi Bhaji, Bhuga Chawar ain Kachalu Tukk (Spinach mix, caramelized onion rice, and fried Arbi)
Saayi means green in Sindhi. Palak (spinach), some Methi (fenugreek leaves), Sua (Dill leaves), Bathua leaves, some coriander; a handful of soaked Chana Dal, finely chopped onion, tomatoes, and green chillies make Saayi Bhaji. Pressure cooked and then tempered with some garlic and red chilly powder. It is a green, smooth, shiny, and slightly spicy-sour end result. Tastes best with Bhuga Chawar: Rice cooked in caramelised, brown onions. A good side for this dish is Kachalu (Arbi) Tukk: boiled and double fried in hot oil, and tossed in selected spices.
4. Tridaali Dal ain Dodo (3 Lentils and Rice flour flatbread)
Another unique Sindhi eat, is ‘Tridaali Dal’ which is a combination of 3 different dals: Hari Moong Dal, Urad Dal, and Chana Dal, in descending quantities. It is an ideally beautiful blend of tastes, and a garlic-infused tempering further enhances its taste. Coming to ‘Dodo,’ which is a rice flour, fine chopped onion, green chilly & coriander flatbread. One has to be very generous with oil while cooking these flatbreads. On a cold winter evening, this combination serves as an immensely satisfying meal.
5. Seyal Tikkin Ji Bhaji
‘Seyal‘ refers to simmered in Sindhi. This dish gets its name from its cooking style: simmered. There’s chopped onion, tomatoes with Indian spices, mixed with hands in the vessel itself. The mix is topped with thick sliced potatoes, tossed in salt. Tikkis are mainly made of Besan, finely chopped onion, also poppy seeds for richness, and are fried beforehand. About 6-8 tikkis are placed on top of the potatoes. Afterwards, some oil is added & the entire mix is covered and simmered until the water released from the onions cooks the entire dish gradually, in a flavourful way. Tastes best with freshly done chapatis.
6. Chaapa Chhola (Aloo Tikki & Chickpeas)
Chaapa means patties, pretty much like Aloo Tikki. However, the Sindhi Chaapa has an outer covering of salted, boiled, mashed potatoes, filled with soft, boiled, and spiced Chana Dal on the inside, fried until they get that delicious crisp layer on the outside, with a golden brown colour. This hot yumminess then reaches its next level: Topping with spicy Chhole in medium gravy, and some thin slices of onions, with a dash of lemon juice or chutney. A very popular street food among Sindhis, and a must-try for every foodie.
7. Sanna Pakoda (Onion Fritters)
Who doesn’t love a warm cup of chai, with a plate of hot pakodas! Sanna Pakodas are onion fritters with a twist, not your regular Kaanda Bhajiya. The batter is made with chickpea flour, finely chopped onions, green chillies, coriander and some spices. Then big chunks of the semi-soft batter are dropped into hot oil. Once fried slightly, they’re taken out and broken into smaller chunks, ready to be fried once more. The small, bite-sized golden brown fritters are ready to be binged upon!
8. Seyal Fulka (Simmered Tortillas)
One cannot even think of using leftover chapatis in such an innovative and delicious way. Fulka means Chapatis or Tortillas in Sindhi. For this dish, leftover chapatis are broken into smaller pieces. Then they are added to a sauce cooked with vegetable oil, freshly grated garlic, blended tomatoes, and various spices; coriander powder being the dominant one. Adding some water before simmering makes it moist and lets the flavours absorb. Garnished with fresh coriander and it’s ready; best served with roasted Sindhi Papad.
9. Bheeya ji tikki (Lotus Stem Fritters)
Bhee is lotus stem. It is an interesting ingredient when it comes to food. To make bheeya ji tikki, one has to boil lotus stems, mash and cook them with a lot of chillies & spices. Then take small portions of the mix to dip and coat in chickpea flour batter. They have to be fried until the inside filling gets even more moist, and the outside is golden and crunchy. A quite unique snack, it tastes best when super hot!
10. Koki (Sindhi flatbread)
Koki is a very popular Sindhi breakfast dish, best served with some salted curd. It is made with wheat flour most often. Finely chopped onions, coriander leaves, cumin seeds, green chillies, salt & spices are added to the flour, and a hard dough is kneaded. Then it is flattened once in a smaller size and cooked partially; re-flattened to a bigger size and cooked perfectly with clarified butter until crispy brownish. There are other variations like one with black pepper flavour called Kaare Mircha ji Koki, and another made with chickpea flour called Besani.
11. Sattapuro Chairo Fulko (Layered spiced tortilla)
Chairo refers to salted or seasoned. This one is rightly one of its kind. To prepare this dish, one can make a simple chapati out of regular wheat dough. Then apply some oil, and a seasoning of red chilly powder and salt. Further, split it into about 7 strips, roll into one in a unique way, flatten, and cook with oil on both sides. The end result is a spot on multilayered, crisp & soft tortilla. Too good to go with Papad & fresh curd, if not the special Dal Moong.
12. Lolo ain Aisee Paalak (Sweet flatbread & Sour Spinach)
Lola is a thick, sweetened flatbread in Sindhi. Usually cooked on occasions, or as a nourishing food for the soul. Wheat flour, caramelized sugar & crushed cardamom are the key ingredients for the dough. The flame is kept low during the entire cooking so that it’s crisp on both sides. Aisee Paalak is a buttery smooth & sour spinach dish that goes really well with the Lola. It’s truly a remarkable combination.
13. Saiyoon Patata (Vermicelli & Fried Potatoes)
Another really popular Sindhi breakfast, or a combo usually found in buffets at weddings. For this dish, Saiyoon (vermicelli) undergo caramelisation to get a brownish colour. They’re sweet in flavour, soft in texture; and still taste exceedingly well with a stark opposite Patata: Diced potatoes fried & seasoned with various spices and salt until perfectly crisp.
14. Singar Maaye Ji Mithai (Khoya Sweet Dish)
How could this list be complete without having some delectable desserts! Singar Maaye Ji Mithai is an exclusive Sindhi sweet dish. Fresh and rich Mawa (Khoya) is the base. There is a layer of Singar (sort of a sweet Farsan item) on top of it to make this irresistibly good sweet dish. Garnished with silver or goldwork, it’s an absolutely mouth-watering sweet.
Another lip-smacking traditional Sindhi sweet dish is Majoon. It is an immensely rich and nourishing mithai, that has pure ghee (clarified butter), a whole LOT of dry fruits like cashews, almonds, pistachios, walnuts, dates, etc; Mawa (Khoya), sweetened milk, poppy seeds, and a bunch of other fabulous ingredients. It is exceedingly comforting and warm and is especially eaten during winters or cold climates.
Sindhi cuisine has a huge bunch of other amazingly awesome dishes like Variyun Patata, Gyaars Jo Dodo ain bhaji, Daal ja fulka, Karela Bassar, Daal Moonga, Kheecha-Kachriyun, Papad, Seero Malpuro. And the list goes on and on. These were the Top 15 Vegetarian Sindhi delicacies that every foodie, without a doubt, MUST try at least once in a lifetime!