Dosa has come to become the definitive South Indian dish. You can eat it at any time of the day, and it comes with endless variations and twists if you go to the right place. There is no dosa as good as the dosa you get in Tamil Nadu, with slight alterations to the recipe and local know-how providing unmatched flavor.
Made from toor daal, if you order daal in Tamil Nadu you will probably get sambar. While many see it as a mere accompaniment to staples such as rice, dosa, and idlis, a true fan knows that a good sambar can be had plain by the spoonful, or even simply drank straight from the bowl. The sambar is the bar by which every South Indian restaurant is judged.
3. Filter Kapi:
Yes, it is a little bit of a cop-out to consider coffee a ‘vegetarian food’, but the fact is that filter coffee remains an absolutely indelible part of any South Indian breakfast meal. You know if your filter coffee is good before you taste it; the unmistakable scent of fresh coffee beans mixed with care with milk and sugar gives any caffeine-head butterflies in the stomach.
4. Medu Vadhai:
Medu means soft in Tamil. These vadas are golden and crispy on the outside, but soft and have a distinct melt-in-your-mouth quality on the inside. Served as an evening snack or as a starter, the versatility of the vada means that it can be served with sambhar, gunpowder, curry leaf powder, or the chutney of your choice.
5. Cauliflower Pakoda:
Pakodas feature all sorts of vegetables fried to an absolute crisp in batter, but cauliflower pakodas are more unique to Tamil Nadu. The cauliflower is mixed with chickpea flour, chili powder, and corn flour and then fried. Traditionally served as an afternoon snack.