While on a trip to Bhutan, you have to try Bhutan food. Food is an important part of the traveling experience, and a trip to Bhutan is never complete without trying out its distinguished strong-flavored “Bhutan Village Food”. While rice forms a major part of Bhutanese food, rice combined with emadatsi (chili with cheese curry) is perhaps the most famous of all Bhutanese cuisine. Chilis are an integral component of practically every dish in Bhutan, and they are regarded so crucial that most Bhutanese would refuse to eat a meal without them.
Bhutan Food also consists of meat items such as shakam paa (dried beef with optional vegetables such as radish, potatoes, etc), shakam datsi (dried beef with cheese), sikam paa (pork with vegetables), Jasha Maru (Spicy chicken stew), etc.
Some of the unique Bhutan Village Food are
- A culinary delight from Haa
Hoentoe is by far the most delectable dish originating from the exotic valley of Haa. A trip to Haa, a one-hour pleasant drive from Paro, is incomplete without savoring this local delicacy. The people of Haa, known as the Haaps in the local language service this traditional dish during Lomba- Your festival celebrated in Haa and Paro.
Hoentoe is a buckwheat dumpling stuffed with an assortment of ingredients that include dried spinach or turnip leaves, cottage cheese, butter, perilla seeds, ginger, and cloves of garlic. More ingredients, the better. Hoentoe can be steamed or fried. Hoentoes are usually eaten with exact, chili paste Made from Local dried chilies.
- A culinary delight from Bumthang valley
Khurle is a traditional buckwheat pancake, a local specialty of the picturesque valley of Bumthang in central Bhutan. Ideally served as a Bhutanese breakfast food, khurle is usually eaten with main dishes like emadatsi ( chili and cheese curry), shaman datsi ( dried beef with cheese), or ezay, a chili paste made from dried chilies, and a cup of homemade suja (butter tea).
Khurle is also served during lunch and dinner. Khurle is also made out of barley and wheat flour. This spongy-textured pancake is highly nutritious and per for cold climates.
A homemade flat noodles delicacy
Jangbali is a Traditional Bhutanese homemade buckwheat flat noodles with seasoning that originated in Bumthang valley. An opportunity to discover unique foods and flavors
Based on the primary nine grains of Bhutan, Bhutan food includes many unique flavors and ingredients such as wild foraged bitter cane (with repeatedly blood-purifying properties) as well as a range of fermented and preserved foods believed to have powerful “ good-for-the-gut(no pun intended) properties
When you are in Bhutan be sure to try some authentic Bhutanese food to complete your Bhutan trip. The following are the top places where you can try Bhutan Food.
Bhutan Kitchen is another go-to restaurant where you can enjoy a traditional Bhutanese dining experience. Although the availability of seats is very low. You can feel the aroma of Bhutanese cuisines as they strictly stick to traditional means of cooking along with using local and fresh ingredients in their preparation methods. However, there is nothing for non-vegetarian people on the menu. The vegetarians can have a dedicated place to enjoy the delicious dishes. A must-try dish is dry lentil soup with red rice and stir-fried vegetables. Bhutan Kitchen also offers buffet plans in which you can plan your meals more effectively. This restaurant tops the list of vegetarian tourists. This restaurant is located at Gatoen Lam.An average cost would be around Nu. 1800 for 2 people.
Though Momo is not originally a Bhutan Food, Momos are very popular in Bhutan. While on a trip to Bhutan, if you are craving for authentic momos, then the only destination to satisfy your cravings is Zombala Restaurant.
Locals will easily guide you to this lively restaurant near the Hong Kong market. This restaurant lies at a busy junction. However it has charming interiors to enhance the experience. Well, Momo is a must-try here, but you should also go for “thuk noodles” and ‘chicken sausages’ as they have the best in town. The popularity is because of its preparation style as momos in this restaurant are not made in the traditional style .
Locals are very fond of it and you would find this place always occupied. Zombala Restaurant is one of the best places to mix with locals.
Folk Heritage Musuem Restaurant
Folk Heritage Museum Restaurant is the oldest restaurant of authentic Bhutanese food. If you want to have a proper Bhutanese feel in your dining experience, then you must come to this restaurant. You can have traditional Bhutanese dishes like shakkam eggs, sauteed spinach, and ema datsi for your lunch in the proper Bhutanese style of traditional wooden bowls. The restaurant serves in both ways, that is quality and quantity. You can visit the amazing interiors and artifacts of the museum too. Bhutanese serving also increases your appetite. The Folk Heritage Museum offers plenty of options from both vegetarians as well as non-vegetarian dishes. You would love their authentic Bhutanese environment and delectable cuisines made from fresh organic ingredients.
Babesa Village Restaurant
Babesa Village restaurant is located on the outskirts of Thimphu and famous for Bhutan Food. From the main town of Thimphu, you have to travel 7 km to reach this restaurant.
This travel experience will take you near the heritage of Bhutan. This restaurant serves delicacies loved by both tourists as well as residents. You must try out the authentic Bhutanese cuisine. Some very popular local dishes include Shakam Paa also known as a beef jerky dish, Seekam Paak known as bacon dish, Suja is a butter tea and Jasha maru is a scrumptious chicken curry. You can add a twist to your flavor pallet with Mengay and Lom which are the type of Bhutanese pizza.
Wangchen Momo Corner
Wangchen Momo corner lies in the Centenary Farmer’s market and is one of the famous snacking centers for locals and tourists. Afternoons are usually overcrowded. You must rush to the exotic plater of steamed momos filled with cheese and beef. For dinner, you can select from its supper offerings including Thupka which is a noodle soup, Fried Rice and Chow Mein which is stir-fried noodles. At Wangchen momo corner, you will get the extra flavor of Bhutanese cuisine in the form of Chilli paste pots. You will always find this place occupied and have to share, although that’s a great way to make some friends. The interesting part about this place is that in this restaurant you can get an awesome taste at a very reasonable price.
Simply Bhutan is a traditional restaurant built inside a museum to create an ambiance of rural Bhutanese culture and lifestyle. Simply Bhutan is a great choice for visitors as they can have the blend of traditional Bhutan Food dishes with the foreign taste pallet.
The restaurant offers a wide variety starting with bathup soup, ema datshi which is a dish made of chili peppers and cheese sauce, beef chili, phaksha paa which is a meat dish, chicken chili, vegetable curry and more. Even the restaurant adds something for the Indian visitors too, starting with Pakoras, chapati, samosa, and aloo paratha. Even the restaurant offers customization in the spiciness and hotness of the dish. You can have a buffet-style meal as well as a la carte meal as per your choice.