Chettinad cuisine is the cuisine of the Chettinad region of Tamil Nadu state in South India. Chettinad cuisine uses a variety of spices and the dishes are hot and pungent with fresh ground masalas. They also use a variety of sun dried meats and salted vegetables, reflecting the dry environment of the region. Most of the dishes are eaten with rice and rice based accompaniments such as dosais, appams, idiyappams, adais and idlis. The Chettinad people through their mercantile contacts with Burma, learnt to prepare a type of rice pudding made with sticky red rice.
Chettinad cuisine offers a variety of vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes. Some of the popular vegetarian dishes include idiyappam, paniyaram, vellai paniyaram, karuppatti paniyaram, paal paniyaram, kuzhi paniyaram, kozhakattai, masala paniyaram, adikoozh, kandharappam, seeyam, masala seeyam, kavuni arisi and athirasam. In Chettinad food, major spices used include anasipoo (star aniseed), kalpasi (a lichen), puli (tamarind), milagai (chillies), sombu (fennel seed), pattai (cinnamon), lavangam (cloves), bay leaf, karu milagu (peppercorn), jeeragam (cumin seeds), and venthayam (fenugreek).
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