The little village of Mukteshwar is found in the Kumaon hills and is visited for the fresh mountain air and thrilling activities. But won’t you agree that when we travel to such quaint mountainous regions, we’re all guilty of eating too many packets of Maggi noodles? Well we certainly don’t want that to be the case for you since you’d really miss out on some wholesome food in Mukteshwar. Together, let’s discover some authentic meals you should try after traveling all the way to Mukteshwar.
What Food Would You Find In Mukteshwar?
Mukteshwar is a hilly region and the dishes served change seasonally. For instance, the region gets very cold in the winters, and even experiences snowfall in January and February. Keeping in mind the low temperatures, the locals dish up meals that keep the body warm. In summers, from March to May, temperatures rise to around 27°C. It still remains pleasant but depending on the availability of certain ingredients in the mountains, dishes will be altered.
To get an authentic taste of the food prepared by locals, it’s best to drop into a village homestay-style restaurant. Post that if you’re ever confused about what to order, go for a thali that has small portions of different kinds of dishes. It’s a win-win.
Here is an overview of what you should expect to get in a thali and the other lip-smacking food in Mukteshwar –
In a thali in Mukteshwar, you’d find Mandua rotis (flatbread) made of ragi or another local millet that is available depending on the season. Now when there’s rotis, you know you’ll also have a few bowls with gravies to dip them into. One of the common dishes is a dal made of black soybean. The menu could also just say your thali includes ‘Aaj ki dal’, meaning that the dal prepared by the chef on that day.
To accompany the dal, the thali includes two bowls of a vegetable dish. One vegetable dish will be made entirely of potatoes while in the other it’s usually a combination of radish and potatoes. The vegetables are cooked in Garhwali spice. Your thali is only complete with bhang ki chutney (a sauce made of hemp seeds) so make sure you have that. Meals are mainly vegetarian in Mukteshwar but on special occasions in some thalis you’ll also get a homemade-style chicken curry. To try out a thali, do check out Café Chandi Matti in Mukteshwar.
Wide Variety Of Cheese
In Mukteshwar, you’ll find some “grate” cheese so make sure you don’t leave the town without picking up a few blocks of them to take home with you. For authentic cheese, you can head to Darima Farms that’s 20 to 30 minutes away from the center of Mukteshwar. But for some delicious cheese, the distance won’t seem too much. At Darima, you can buy cheese crafted by Pritam Bhatty, an Italian-trained cheesemaker. You can even book a cheese factory tour if you’d like.
Another cheese manufacturer closer to the city center is Old Hill Foods. The cheese prepared here is by Nitin Dayalu, a cheesemaker who trained in Auroville and even the Netherlands! Cheddar, Parmigiano, Dandelion Gouda are just some of the various types of cheese you can try, learn about and purchase in Mukteshwar. You’ll also be able to pick cheese packets from Royal Mart and Chirping Tales Café.
Kafuli is a very popular dish in Uttarakhand, made of fresh spinach and fenugreek leaves. When you look at it the first thought that comes to mind is that it definitely looks like something Popeye eats right out of a can for strength. This dish is very easy to prepare for the locals as they usually have these plants growing right outside their backyard. When you come to Mukteshwar, make sure you try it out because it’s one of the iconic dishes prepared in the mountains, especially if you’re heading out on a trek.
Mooli Raita is a side dish that compliments nearly every type of dish you’ll find when exploring food in Mukteshwar. It’s essentially just radish mixed with yogurt and a dash of spices. You can use it as a dip for the fried potato dish or for fritters. It keeps the stomach cool and is mom-approved healthy. Another version of the same side is Kakdi raita where instead of radish, cucumber slices are added to the yogurt.
Sabudana vada is one of the most fulfilling snacks to munch on during tea-time in Mukteshwar. It’s an oil-fried fritter made from peanuts, potatoes, herbs and sago (an edible starch found in trees). If you don’t manage to get your hands on Sabudana vada, we suggest trying another favorite snack in Mukteshwar that goes by the name of ‘Aloo Ke Gutke’. This is a fried potato appetizer that gives you more reason to just love the versatility of potatoes!
Urad Dal Jalebi
Urad is a type of black bean, easily grown and found in Mukteshwar. Out of the bean, the locals prepare a sweet dish known as Urad Dal Jalebi. It’s a healthy twist to the traditional Indian sweet that looks like a pretzel. After a healthy meal, this sweet dish just makes the culinary experience come full circle.
Sipping on a hot cup of tea and staring mindlessly at the beautiful Himalayan landscapes is a dream that can be a reality in Mukteshwar. The region gets plenty of tea-lovers and if you consider yourself one, there’s a variety of tea that you can try. The Himalayan Rhododendron and Chamomile brewed tea are great ones to try and pretty therapeutic too. Sip on these teas after a heavy and let your body unwind -it’s the perfect way to end a day of exploring food in Mukteshwar.
Jhangora Ki Kheer
Kheer is a common dessert eaten after meals in India. It has a pudding-like consistency and you may have tried it before but the ones in Mukteshwar are constructed slightly differently. The kheer in Mukteshwar is made of Jhangora which is somewhat like quinoa. It is a nutritious millet that is gluten-free and grown widely in the region. Along with the Jhangora millet, there’s an addition of almonds, cashews and raisins giving you the chance to eat a healthy dessert.
You’re Ready To Try Food That Warms The Heart
You now have the name of all the most irresistible dishes to try out when in Mukteshwar. Overall, the food here is rich in nutrients and really feeds the heart, not just the stomach. For all those who live to eat, we’re sure you’ll have a swell food affair in Mukteshwar and much more. You’ve got answers to where to eat but not where to stay. In case you’re on the hunt for accommodation, do check out goSTOPS at Mukteshwar where you can capture some beautiful views of the snow-capped mountains from the hostel rooftop or just enjoy your meal there.
What Are Some Of The Local Delicacies Of Mukteshwar?
The food you’ll find in Mukteshwar is simple and nutritious. Some of the delicacies that you should try when here are
- Aloo ke Gutke (potato dish)
- Bal Mithai (sweet dish)
- Ras Bhaat (a curry made of local pulses)
- Mooli Raita (a side dish of radish and yogurt)
- Bhaang Ki Chutney (sauce made of hemp seeds)
What Are The Best Restaurants To Eat At In Mukteshwar?
If you’re looking for authentic food, try eating at a local homestay-style restaurant, you’ll come across many of them in Mukteshwar. But some of the best restaurants to eat at in Mukteshwar include –
- Nirvana Organic
- Chirping Tales Cafe
- Cafe Chandi Mati
- The Birdcage
What Are The Famous Fruits Of Mukteshwar?
Mukteshwar is famous for its fruit orchards. Apples, peaches, plum and apricot are some of the fruits that you’ll easily find growing around in Mukteshwar and are a must to try.
What Is Special In Mukteshwar?
Mukteswar is famous for its breathtaking landscape and adventure activities like paragliding, rock climbing at Chauli Ki Jali and trekking. In comparison to Nainital, it receives fewer tourists which makes it appealing for those who wish to steer away from tourist places.