In a traditional Burmese dish boiled (not steamed!) rice (htamin) always takes centre place. The rice is accompanied by a large array of curries (hin) made of fish (nga) or shrimps (pazun seik) or prawn (pazun a-htoke) or pork (wet-tha) or beef (ame-tha) or chicken (kyet), clear broth (hincho)and/or clear soups (hinga), vegetables such as cauliflower (kaw-phi-ban), cabbage (kaw-phi-htoke) or egg plant (kha-yan-thee), salads (athoke) made of e.g. tomato (kha-yan-chin-thee) or cucumber (tha-kwa-thee) with onion (kyet-tun-ni), seasonal fruits such as apple (pan-thee), banana (nga-pyaw-thee), mango (tha-yet-thee), and /or pineapple (nar-nat-thee), etc. and/or desserts such as semolina cake (sa-nwin-ma-kin). Contrary to non-Asian countries where meals are traditionally served in courses (appetizers, soup, main course and desert) in Burma all is served at once so that the diners can chose by themselves what to eat first and what last.
India is a country that boasts of unity in diversity and the story with its cuisine is somewhat similar. The term 'Indian cuisine' is a great misnomer because Indian food cuisine is not just one type of cuisine. The much talked about 'Indian cuisine' is rather the identification of the various cuisines inherent to the states, regions, cultures, climatic conditions and to some extent the religions that make it up.It is interesting to know that Indian food cuisine can be divided in terms of the state or region it comes from, e.g. Maharashtrian cuisine, Gujrati cuisine, Odiya cuisine, Rajasthani cuisine, Andhra Pradesh cuisine, Bengali cuisine, etc. It can also be segregated as North Indian, North East Indian and South Indian cuisine. North Indian cuisine takes into account Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand and West-Central & Eastern Uttar Pradesh cuisine. It also includes Bhojpuri and Mughlai cuisine. While North East Indian is the collective term used for Assamese, Arunachali, Tripuri, Manipuri, Meghalayan, Naga, Mizoram and Sikkimese cuisine. Tribal cuisines like that of Garo, Khasi and Bodo, are part of this. South Indian cuisine on the other hand comprises Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu cuisine.
At first glance it seems to be clear what Burmese cuisine is, it is that what Burmese people are cooking. But taking a closer look reveals that things are not quite as clear as they seem to be because there is both inside and outside Burma a far spread ignorance as to the proper meaning of words. Burma is in many aspects a land of great diversity. There are many different ethnic groups such as the Mon, Shan, Kachin, Chin, Karen, Rakhine, Bamar, etc. The total number of officially recognised ethnic groups is 135 but there are much more because many are not recognised. And as diverse as the country's ethnicity is its cuisine. In other words, 'Burmese (Myanmar)' cuisine is just a catch-all term. What is called 'Burmese' cuisine is actually the sum total of the many different local cuisines and the cuisines of the bordering countries Bangladesh, India, China, Laos and Thailand for cuisines do not know clear cut by humans more or less arbitrary drawn borders.
Ampoule Monday , April 16th , 2018 - 19:35:26 PM
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