For Most of people of Northern Hemisphere(????) of India ( I meant Northern half of India), South Indian Cuisine usually means Idli, Dosa, Sambhar and Mendu Vada. For Southern states, the definition differs for all five states ( Yes, now Telangana is different state) but for me it is a very large playground (yeah I play with food! *wink* *wink*)
For me South Indian Cuisine starts with a good Rasam, any Rasam would do if tangy and spicy at the same time! Followed by standard Vadai or any version of Idli (my new innovation is Manchurian Idli )
I used to love to have South Indian Thali whenever I visit a South Indian restaurant. It usually contains Poori, Rasam, Korma, Aviyal, Pachdi, Mor Kuzhambu, Poppadam, Rice, Pickle and of course Payassam. Payassam is dessert made of milk with a particular flavors, like Kheer.
I have checked out some of typically Keralian Cuisines thanks to my Roommate at hostel and my colleagues. I just love Pitt or Puttu, a typical Malayali breakfast item (For some reasons my colleagues think that I’m a specimen as very few people like this dish) .
My latest affair in this variety of food is Tomato Rice. I try out this dish at almost all south Indian restaurant these days. This is actually a leftover rice recipe, but people make it with fresh rice too! And I just love the combination of rice and tomato gravy mixed and cooked together. ( I’ll share my version of the recipe some of these days)
Andddd ofcourse, last but equally important, The Filter Kapi. This is an amazing thing of southern part of India. Everyone in every household of southern India has Filter Coffee, freshly brewed, like first thing in the morning. The smell itself is so amazing that even if you are not a coffee lover, I bet you’d fall in love with this one!!