For the first 10-12 years of my life, South indian food meant dosa, idli, sambar, chutney and rasam. Pretty much the basics. There was this restaurant called Naivedyam near our house (it still exists there) where we used to go fairly often and usually ordered the same standard food. The variations were limited pretty much to masala or plain dosa, paper dosa or smaller size dosa, rasam to start the meal or go straight to idli. Important decisions! 🙂 But we loved the food and these dishes became part of what we used to eat at home too.
Slowly as we started trying more things, at restaurants or friend’s houses, I got to know more about the beautiful food from the four south Indian states. I am still learning new things, new flavours, new names, new combinations and continue to fall in love with the cuisines even more. Helps that I am married to a Tamilian 🙂
One of the earliest things I tried, outside of the standard fare, was Lemon Rice. It was an easy thing to start with, given how much I love rice and lemon (Bengali-ness :)). It is light, delicious, textural and punchy. What’s not to love?