Relish Your Taste Buds With 8 Delectable Bhutanese Staple Food

Email

One of the best places to try authentic Bhutanese cuisine is through a homestay, where you will get to sample what most locals eat at home.

(Source: Youtube/ Geography Time)

By Zann Huizhen Huang | Daily Bhutan

Known for its pristine environment and organic produce, Bhutanese cuisine is not only healthy, its rich blend of flavours will leave you wanting for more.

If you are visiting the Land of the Thunder Dragon, make sure you take your taste buds on a wonderful ride of unforgettable flavours!

One of the best places to try authentic Bhutanese cuisine is through a homestay, where you will get to sample what most locals eat at home.

1.Bhutanese Red Rice

A staple food of the Bhutanese, red rice is somewhat similar to brown rice. When cooked, the fragrant rice takes on a pale pink hue and tastes a little chewy and nutty.

Said to be cooked faster than unmilled brown rice, it is gluten free and packed full of nutrients such as: zinc, iron, calcium, magnesium, B group vitamins, manganese, selenium, protein and potassium. It is also known to contain more zinc and iron than its white, black or brown rice counterparts.

 Photo: Bhutan Natural

 

Its distinctive red tinge is due to the presence of anthocyanin, a flavonoid. This acts as a powerful antioxidant that can potentially curb the spread of cancer cells and thwart the formation of tumours. Anthocyanin also has anti-ageing properties and is beneficial to the skin.

Bhutanese red rice also has a lower glycemic index of 55, instead of the standard index of 70, it is therefore an excellent alternative for people with diabetes.

2. Ema Datshi

Touted as the Kingdom’s national dish, it is practically eaten in almost every meal and goes well with red rice and many other dishes.

This tantalising dish can be made using different varieties of chillies – the green, red or even white ones.

  

‘Ema’ means ‘chilli’ while ‘datshi’ means ‘cheese’ so this simple dish is made using yak cheese and chillies as well as a combination of garlic, onion and tomatoes. The final outcome is a creamy and savoury stew which is very both aromatic and appetising.

3. Jasha Maru

 

A traditional dish prepared using chicken, garlic, ginger, tomatoes, and onions, it is one of the spiciest dishes in Bhutanese cuisine. Particularly popular, it goes very well with red rice.

4. Phaksha Paa

Prepared using pork, Phaksha Paa is a complex blend of spices, chilies and some mountain vegetables, as well as turnips or radishes.

They are all cooked in oil or butter while the pork is first stir-fried and then added to the blend. This is a staple Bhutanese dish which is also served with red rice.

5. Zow Shungo

Bhutanese never waste things that can be used in one way or another, and the preparation of Zow Shungo is a perfect example.

Made from leftovers of vegetables and red rice, this dish is an all-time favourite. 

6. Shakam Paa

An amazing Bhutanese dish made using ground beef, dried chilies, and radish. The beef in this dish is a bit chewy because it is first dried and then preserved before being used.

 

Shakam Paa is an excellent source of protein as well as one of the staple diets of the Bhutanese.

7. Goen Hogey

One of the lightest Bhutanese dishes, Goen Hogey is a traditional Bhutanese salad made using sliced cucumbers, onions, cilantro, cheese, and chili flakes. 

It is a refreshing alternative which will leave you invigorated, and is best eaten with Sichuan pepper.

8. Jaju Soup

Jaju is a traditional Bhutanese soup made of turnip or green leafy vegetables such as spinach. 

Boiled in a broth of butter and milk, this hearty soup is so much tastier when cheese is also added and is especially comforting during cold weather.


Related Posts

Ngenpa Gudzom is the most inauspicious day on the Bhutanese...

Ngenpa Gudzom literally means the meeting of the Nine Evils. (Ngenpa = Evil, Gu = Nine, Dzom = Meet)

Dec 10, 2021 11:43

Tshoglhams, the 'colour-coded' traditional boots of Bhutan

The colour of the traditional boots indicates the status of the wearer.

Nov 22, 2021 15:29

What is your birth mewa (birth marks)?

Mewa indicates a karmic relation from life to life.

Nov 16, 2021 14:42

How to make your own Bhutanese suja (butter tea) at home

All you need are 5 simple ingredients and 10 minutes of your time.

Nov 15, 2021 13:56

What's your element: water, fire, earth, wood, metal

Each of the five elements possesses its own attributes.

Oct 29, 2021 13:55

Unlike the rest of the world, Bhutanese celebrate Mother's Day on...

The Descending Day of Lord Buddha is to honour the day Lord Buddha returned to the human realm. During this festival,...

Oct 27, 2021 11:34

Latest

News

Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom is one of the 15 shortlisted films for Oscars 2022 International Feature Film Category

The Academy Awards, popularly known as Oscars is the most prestigious award within the film industry.

Jan 10, 2022 16:01

Bhutan experienced one of the heaviest snowfalls in a decade

On December 29, 2021, Bhutan experienced one of the heaviest snowfalls since Gasa’s record of 12cm in 2018.

Dec 30, 2021 16:47

Features

Bhutanese artist invited to decorate life-sized tiger sculpture for display in Singapore

Renowned artists showcase artworks to promote tiger conservation issues.

Jan 21, 2022 12:52

Bhutan's transition into the age of digitalisation

Bhutan embraced the ICT sector and endeavour to build its economy around it.

Jan 13, 2022 12:07

Business

Online businesses are becoming more and more popular in Bhutan

Even though the Internet was developed in the 1960s, the tiny Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan was only introduced to it in June 1999.

Jan 20, 2022 12:41

Yathra weaving, the uniquely Bumthang culture

Unlike other places in Bhutan, the people of Bumthang don’t do agricultural work. Instead, they weave yathra products. Traditionally, every...

Sep 13, 2021 17:06

Sports

Outstanding individuals, schools and clubs awarded for their contributions to grassroots football

On December 22, 2021, the Bhutan Football Federation (BFF), a bronze member of the AFC Grassroots Charter,presented awards to unsung heroes...

Jan 11, 2022 14:15

Bhutan's national women cricket team won ICC Women's T20 World Cup Asia Qualifier 2021 opening match

The United Arab Emirates is currently hosting the ICC Women's T20 World Cup Asia Qualifier. The two ICC Academy grounds in Dubai Sports City...

Nov 23, 2021 11:13

Travel

Bhutan banned mountaineering out of respect for the local spiritual beliefs

While there are many stunning peaks in Bhutan, mountaineering is prohibited in Bhutan.

Nov 29, 2021 11:51

My first Jomolhari Base Camp Trek experience, a journey within and beyond

Find out what to expect on a 5-day Jomolhari Base Camp Trek itinerary

Nov 26, 2021 15:01

Lifestyle

Ngenpa Gudzom is the most inauspicious day on the Bhutanese calendar

Ngenpa Gudzom literally means the meeting of the Nine Evils. (Ngenpa = Evil, Gu = Nine, Dzom = Meet)

Dec 10, 2021 11:43

Tshoglhams, the 'colour-coded' traditional boots of Bhutan

The colour of the traditional boots indicates the status of the wearer.

Nov 22, 2021 15:29

COVID-19

Bhutan undergo blackout period to curb COVID-19 transmission

Bhutan went into a “24 hours blackout” in 14 Dzongkhags with the detection of a positive community case on 15th January 2022. 141 new cases...

Jan 18, 2022 16:43

Bhutan to roll out booster shots next week for priority groups

Kingdom of Bhutan has thus far organized two vaccination campaigns in March and July 2021.

Dec 16, 2021 12:26

Subscribe to our newsletter

Never miss out on new happenings and news stories!

Download Daily Bhutan Mobile App

Connecting with us just got easier!