Mysore and Dusshera celebrations are almost synonymous. It is impossible to imagine this season without visuals of beautifully adorned elephants and the glistening lights that bring the entire city alive. The Amba Vilas Palace of Mysore stands majestically as one of the most iconic sights of the season. Besides the Dusshera festivities, the Mysore Palace is also renowned for the culinary genius of the royal chefs.
Simple Ingredients, Exquisite Dishes
The use of indigenous ingredients is common in the kitchen of the Mysore palace. They have been known to use Rajamudi rice, sour kokum, ragi, Byadgi chilies and spices like peppercorns, cinnamon and cardamom to prepare wholesome and innovative dishes. The royal kitchen is famous for different varieties of kosambari, palyas, puliogare, gojjus, huli, obattu that use these simple, everyday ingredients.
Iconic Dishes That Originated in the Mysore Palace
With the culinary knowledge of the royal chiefs, it is no wonder that some of the most well-known South Indian dishes originated in the palace. The first dish that comes to mind is the Mysore Pak, originally known as Mysore Paaka. It s believed that in 1935, the royal chef, Kakasura Madappa, invented the Mysore Pak accidentally. He cooked ghee, besan, and sugar by mistake but decided to turn it into a dessert and serve it to Krishna Raja Wadiyar VI. The delicious dish was named the rural sweet as the King loved it so much.
Another such dish is the avial which is an integral part of the cuisine in Kerala. Legend has it that the treasurer of the Mysore Palace instructed the royal cooks that the vegetable scraps left over after a feast at the palace must not be wasted. A gravy was prepared with spices, yoghurt, and coconut oil and served to the guests who thoroughly enjoyed it.
If there is one dish that is inseparable from the cuisine in Karnataka, it is the bisibele bhath. A festive special and a dish enjoyed by many tourists who visit the Darshinis scattered across the state, the name bisibele bhath translates to hot lentil rice. Originally, the dish was prepared with just the two ingredients mentioned in the name. It was in the royal kitchen that the dish evolved into the one that we all enjoy today.
They added a mix of spices, vegetables and tempered the rice with ghee, mustard leaves, chilies and asafoetida to make an aromatic variety of rice that also became a staple for farm workers around the palace.
The Amba Vilas Palace has made its mark in South Indian culinary history, undoubtedly. The focus has always been on preparing wholesome dishes that not only the royal members of the family but also the subjects could enjoy.
Adukale brings to you a simple way to enjoy the dishes that found their origins in the Amba Vilas palace. Our heirloom recipes are a testimony to the traditional foods that have captured the hearts of many across the globe. They are easy to prepare and give you the authentic taste that has stood the test of time, ensuring that you enjoy South Indian cuisine in all its glory.
Here is wishing you all a wonderful and joyous festive season!