Hyderabadi cuisine, or Deccani cooking, is a unique blend of Mughlai, Turkish and Arabic flavors combined with the traditional tastes of Telangana and Marathwada.
During the mid-17th century, Hyderabadi cuisine was born through the patronage of Nizams—the rulers of Hyderabad. The Nizams, the regal figures of India, were renowned for their epicurean tendency.
As renowned foodies and generous connoisseurs of delectable dishes, they left behind an iconic culinary legacy and grand traditions that are still celebrated today. Like the Nizams of Lucknow, who developed a reputation for their lavish and exquisite dishes, the Nizams of Hyderabad also had an intense appreciation for delectable cuisines.
Their feasts comprised many courses and featured exquisite utensils sourced from all corners of the globe – such was their love for grandeur! Hyderabadi cuisine personified luxury at its finest.
Hyderabadi’s cuisine combines rice and meat with diverse ingredients such as vegetables, spices, and flavors, particularly in Hyderabad and its surrounding region. Tomato and tamarind are heavily incorporated into dishes, making them distinctively different from other types of Indian cooking.
Where is Hyderabad?
Hyderabad, the effervescent city of pearls and aromatic biryani on India’s Deccan Plateau – formerly Bhagyanagar – is a bustling metropolis now acting as Telangana and Andhra Pradesh’ shared capital.
Did you know…?
Hyderabad is famously known as the City of Pearls due to its artisans’ remarkable capability to puncture and thread pearls without disrupting their integrity.
Quli Qutub Shah founded this city in the 16th century, and it is now famously referred to as Cyberabad, India’s second silicon valley. This cosmopolitan locale proudly showcases a variety of cultures and offers its many visitors a wealth of experiences like none other.
The Charminar is a must.
Hyderabad boasts one of the world’s most distinguished monuments – the magnificent Charminar. This architectural marvel is constructed with granite and limestone and features four towering minarets at its cardinal points, each facing a distinct street below.
As the water shortages and recurring outbreaks of cholera and plague presented a dire outlook, Quli Qutub Shahi ruler Mohammed V decided to build a new city with its centerpiece as the Charminar. Its streets radiated outward in all four cardinal directions, forming an innovative urban design that still stands today.
Are you planning to visit Hyderabad?
Shopping in Hyderabad is an experience, as the Charminar stands tall amidst a maze of winding streets lined with countless stalls and vendors. Here you can find genuine pearls and savor some of the city’s best dishes, such as biryani, skewer kebabs, and haleem, delicacies that have made Hyderabad famous worldwide.
Best Food in Hyderabad
You can indulge in the irresistible flavors of Hyderabad. The tantalizing cuisine of Hyderabad fuses together Arabic, Persian, Turkish, and local delicacies – making it truly unique. The impact of foreign culture on Hyderabadi cuisine is immense.
Hyderabadi food is a meat dish cuisine.
Despite the prevalence of cow-protection movements throughout India, Hyderabad continues to be celebrated for its delectable non-vegetarian beef dishes. In general, however, Mughal cuisine is predominately vegetarian aside from lamb and chicken dishes; these savory meals are composed primarily of lentils, peas, and beans that have been artfully seasoned with spices.
Vegetables are indisputably the rulers of Indian cuisine, yet Mughal dishes often encompass goat and lamb delicacies. These succulent delights can be served in various manners – from melt-in-the-mouth kababs to roasts, barbecued meats, or even curries with slow-cooked roasted spices.
With centuries of Mughal-influenced gastronomy evolution, Hyderabad has become renowned for its aromatic and tasty Biryani – a rice and mutton or chicken dish.
Travelers have documented that in the past, an authentic Hyderabadi feast would showcase at least 26 diverse types of this delicious meal, which is said to be a natural aphrodisiac.
Should you eat street food in Hyderabad?
A trip to India is only satisfactory with tasting its delicious street food. Although feasting on street delicacies in India or abroad poses potential health risks, if you pay close attention to some crucial factors, your experience can still be delightful and healthy!
Before you indulge, remember to cleanse your hands! Don’t consume something that doesn’t taste, feel or smell right. In case of any unpleasant stomach-related experiences on the road – such as diarrhea, fever, and vomiting – make sure you have some medication ready for relief.
Hyderabadi Dishes that You Must Try
The delectable flavors of Hyderabadi cuisine come from the perfect blend of spices, not fat or oil. Whether cooked using traditional methods in a clay pot, fried with ghee, or barbequed over an open flame – its unique flavor will tantalize your taste buds!
The delicious biryani from Hyderabad stands out compared to any other dish. This fragrant delight consists of mutton as the primary ingredient, though chicken is another popular choice.
Vegetarian biryani is much lighter than its meat-based counterpart due to the absence of fatty goat meat, which gives mutton biryani a heavy and saturated quality.
The legendary Hyderabadi Marag soup is an exquisite dish fit for royalty, tantalizing the taste buds of all who desire a meaty concoction full of any other spices you can imagine. It’s made with succulent pieces of mutton that will make even the most discerning diner swoon! This fabulous recipe brings authentic Nawabi cuisine into your home today.
Bati Kebab or Boti Kebab
A delightful snack or appetizer, these kebabs are usually savored with raw onions, lemon wedges, flavorful chutneys, and Indian bread.
Marinated chunks of lamb, mutton, chicken, or beef are submerged in a yogurt-based mixture containing garlic, ginger root, chilis, papaya, and flavorful spices like garam masala chili powder and cumin. These pieces of meat are then skewered before being grilled to absolute perfection and brushed with ghee.
Qubani Ka Meetha
Double ka meetha is a deliciously indulgent and decadent dessert that melts in your mouth. This Hyderabadi treat is similar to bread pudding but with an extra layer of scrumptiousness!
Double ka meetha, or as it’s called in Hindi, ‘double roti,’ is a delightful treat crafted from fried bread crisped to perfection. The golden-brown slices are then layered with a creamy blend of evaporated and condensed milk, plus fragrant spices such as saffron and cardamom.
To culminate the tasty dessert, chopped nuts are scattered over the top for a crunchy texture.
Savor the tantalizing Hyderabadi-style lentil stew that will send your taste buds on a delightful journey. The secret to its deliciousness is tamarind, which adds an incomparable zest to each spoonful.
This rich and flavourful dish is infused with cumin, mustard, coriander seeds, dried red chilies, and curry leaves for a unique culinary experience.
A fantastic concoction of mutton, nuts, spices, and wheat enjoyed by all cultures, this delectable dish has its roots in Harees from the Arab migrants who brought it to Hyderabad. During Islamic Ramadan, when rigorous fasting regulations are implemented, it serves as a nutritional source for those devoted to the rules.
South India streets are lined with delicious spicy keema samosas, each accompanied by a compelling selection of chutneys. From breakfast to tea time, these delectable treats bring joy and satisfaction to all who indulge in them!
Keema Samosa is an exquisitely delicious snack. Compared to potato samosas, minced sampling is favored by the locals, and its demand increases particularly during monsoon season.
Burani raita, a much-loved dish from Hyderabad, is renowned not just for its delectable flavor. Instead, the simplistic ingredients make this particular Raita extraordinary: freshly crafted and thick yogurt, garlic cloves, flavorful spices, and masalas – all artfully blended to create an incredible taste experience!
The garlic’s incomparable flavor and spicy aroma make this raita a favorite in Hyderabad. Indian raitas are ideal for biryani and great as an accompaniment to pulao or paratha.
Treat yourself to the tantalizing flavors of Hyderabadi Khichdi, an alluring rice dish cooked with nutritious basmati rice, flavorful masoor dal, and exquisitely aromatic spices. Complement your meal with a zesty chutney called ‘Khatta’ or Til Ka Khatta for a truly unforgettable culinary experience!
Mirchi Ka Salan
Mirchi Ka Salan is a traditional Hyderabadi delicacy traditionally served alongside Biryani, especially on special occasions. To make this savory dish, peanuts, coconut, sesame seeds, and poppy are expertly roasted and toasted before being blended into a delicious paste.
Start by frying the whole green chilies first. Then, sauté a medley of aromatic spices such as cumin, mustard seed, curry leaves, red chili peppers, fenugreek, and ginger garlic paste for that extra zing! Mix in all the ingredients together until everything is well-combined before adding tamarind pulp to give it that creamy tangy and nutty flavor.
Mirchi ka salan is a delectable dish traditionally made to accompany Hyderabadi biryani, served on special occasions and enjoyed by all.
Are you ready to embark on a culinary journey and experience the flavors of Indian cuisine?
If you’re looking to try your hand at some delicious dishes, why not explore the beautiful recipes we have on offer? From tasty starters to delightful desserts and everything in between, there’s sure to be something for everyone!
From succulent pieces of mutton Bati Kebab to the indulgent Qubani Ka Meetha dessert, Hyderabad is a culinary paradise with an array of flavors and dishes. So whether you’re looking for savory snacks or sweet desserts, there’s something on this list to tantalize your taste buds!
What is Hyderabadi cuisine?
The royal cuisine of India and Hyderabadi delicacies have achieved iconic status and gained a worldwide cult following. An essential part of South Indian culture, the Hyderabadi tradition is renowned for its gastronomic excellence.
What is Hyderabadi dum biryani?
Hyderabadi dum biryani is a classic Indian dish. It consists of rice cooked with spices.
Preparing Hyderabadi dum biryani requires precision and time, as it is cooked in the traditional “Kutchi” (raw) style. Herein, uncooked rice and meat are combined with spices inside a ‘handi’ (earthen pot), mixing them before adding a small amount of water to cook everything evenly. There’s no denying that preparing this dish takes considerable effort!
What is the best book on Hyderabad food?
Pratibha Karan’s book, Hyderabadi Cuisine: A Princely Legacy, is a testament to India’s multifaceted history. It captures the amalgamation of multiple identities and cultures – local and foreign – yet still exudes its unique identity.
This book will take you on a brief yet sentimentally charged excursion to Hyderabad. Here, you will get the chance to appreciate its captivating background and culture while tasting its delicacies, all while recognizing the city’s social graces that are sometimes marginally overstated.