On the western part of the country lies a princely state; a state that is home to royalty, artisans, culture, heritage and wildlife; a state whose locals are spread across the world and whose theplas (spiced flat breads) are ‘world famous’, literally, and that state is Gujarat! Known for the wonderful food originating from this part of India, the food from Gujarat is something that touches everyone who tries it. Predominantly vegetarian, there is a myth that Gujarati food is always sweet which it actually isn’t. Jaggery is added to the food to set off the sourness from the kokum that is generally added to the food. With extensive use of vegetables and pulses, a simple Gujarati meal is a complete meal with the right amount of nutrition on your plate. From the Roti (flatbread) that is accompanied by a dry vegetable preparation and a dal (lentil preparation; usually boiled split pigeon pea cooked with some spices) along with some plain white rice. These meals usually have some farsan (snacks) and mishtaan (sweet dish) that come with the food too and that is because in rural Gujarat, the sole earning members usually eat a very early lunch (around 10-11 am) and head out to work only to have their next meal after they have come back. A meal of this sort in the morning helps them comfortably sail through the day. With each region having recipes, cooking techniques and flavours unique to themselves, Gujarati food is varied and delicious. Some of the famous (and must haves) Gujarati dishes include: Patra (Marathi: Aloowadi): Colocasia Leaves lined with a paste made of wheat flour, gram flour, rice flour and millet flours, rolled, steamed and then deep fried! Delicious! Khaman Dhokla: A Gujarati delicacy, khaman dhokla is a steamed sponge made of a gram flour that’s topped with crackling mustard seeds and curry leaves! Aamras Puri/Aamba no Ras ane Puri: A deep fried flatbread and freshly squeezed mango juice is every Gujaratis drug, literally! Undhyu: A winter delicacy, this is a vegetable dish made out of vegetables that grow during the dry winters and is a wholesome meal on its own! Best enjoyed with some Puri and Shrikhand (sweetened, hand made yogurt)! Gujarati Kadhi: A yogurt and gram flour based gravy like dish that is usually made instead of dal on various occasions. Ponkh: Another winter delicacy, ponkh basically is tender millet that is served with an assortment of spices and a variety of sev (crispy and noodle like gram flour based snack). Khichdi: A porridge made out of any one lentil (usually split pigeon seeds or split green gram) and rice served with ghee (the healthy clarified butter, usually made at home) and milk or kadhi is soulful food taken to a new level! Simplicity at its best. Thepla: A spiced flatbread with some fresh fenugreek added to the batter, thepla is a Gujarati staple that is enjoyed with anything and everything! Duck into a glass of milk or tea or coffee, have it with a sweet mango pickle, have it with bottle gourd and potato curry or potatoes tossed in some spices or just the way it is, a thepla undoubtedly everyone’s favourite.