- ODO: 7424 – 7565km
- Location: Bekal Fort, Kerala, India
- Weather: 18-34 Clear and Hot
Let tell you what I love about South Indian food. And oh boy have I eaten a lot of it. Another perk of cycling is that – even in these short equatorial days – I can easily eat three full meals of favourite food. I struggled in Eastern Europe and Turkey as a vegetarian but here – where vegetarians are the majority I am spoilt rotten.
For breakfast I start with Idly – a small white roll sized ball. It’s bland on its own but comes with a bread style sauce and a spicy gravy which can be ok the side or can sometimes hold the Idly like a deserted island in a steep metal bowl.
From there I have Vada. Vada is basically a breakfast doughnut. Incredibly savoury yet morish it soaks up the gravel and holds it on the crust.
One of the side joys of Indian food is eating with my hands. One hand to precise. Learning to fold and tear roti was one of my rights of passage when I arrived in Mumbai. The dosa then is a great example of how fun eating with the hand can be. It’s effectively a giant crepe with spicy potatoes in the middle and served with the same side flavours. Cracking and folding and using the resulting square as a spoon to heap up as much of the potato mixture as I can and spoon it into mouth making sure to get all my fingers right in there. That’s for lunch.
For dinner, I like gravy of some kind. Usually paneer (cheese) tikka masala – which serves little if no relation to the English tikka masala strain. Or aloo gobi – cauliflower based. Alongside and for cutlery, I have three roti or chapatis along with jeera rice to double up the carb load.
This is my kind of meal plan.