Part of the Gujarat state, Kathiawar/ Khatiyawad is a peninsula on the Indian west coast bordering the Arabian Sea. It is bounded by the Gulf of Kutch in the northwest and by the Gulf of Khambhat in the east. In the northeast, it is connected to mainland Gujarat. Kathiawar ports were flourishing centres of trade and commerce since at least the 16th century.
The word Kathiawad means the land of the Kathis, a Rajput tribe who migrated to the region in the 8th century and controlled the southwestern peninsula of contemporary Gujarat.
The peninsula is dotted with antiquities and has a continuous history from prehistoric times to the early periods of the Mahabharata through the Indus civilization.
The region is also famous for its own indigenous horse breed called the Kathiawari horse. It was originally bred as a desert war horse for use over long distances, in rough terrain, on minimal rations, today however it is a diminishing breed.
Gir National Park in the region is home to the the last remaining Asiatic lion population.
Khatiyawadi cuisine is distinct from the more popular Gujarati cuisine. In winters, the region witnesses a severe dip in temperature and the spice factor in the meals helps warm the body to the weather conditions.
Khatiywadi cuisine tends to be more spicy and heavier as compared to the Gujarati cuisine that has lighter curries with a hint of sweetness in most preparations.
The region is largely vegetarian, however, it also has a sizeable Muslim population of the Bohri sect and their cuisine too is unique and different. Bohri food is influenced not just by their home region of Gujarat but also by Mughal and Middle Eastern food.
This weekend at Daana, we take you on a journey to this beautiful part of India and present some culinary delights that will leave you asking for more!