The history of Kashmiri cuisine can be traced back several hundred years to the invasion of India by Tumur and the migration of merchants, craftsmen and cooks from Samarkand to the verdant Kashmir valley.
The descendants of these cooks, the wazas, are now regarded as the master chefs of Kashmiri cuisine, which is rich and redolent with the distinct flavours of spices such as cardamom, cinnamon, cloves and saffron. A formal banquet in Kashmir is called the royal Wazwan which takes hours of preparation and consists of an elaborate multi-course meal.
Here's a list of dishes made by the wazas of Kashmir that you must try
Lamb in Kashmiri maval petals and red onion gravy
This dish is a huge hit with people who like their food spicy hot. The combination of hot spices and the red colour derived from maval, the dried flower of the cockscomb plant make it a treat for the eyes and tastebuds. While rogan stands for fat that the meat is cooked in, josh means hot and passionate.
Lamb ribs with turmeric, cinnamon and saffron
The front ribs of a fatty goat poached in moval essence, spices and fennel and then seared in ghee makes tabak maas, the Kashmiri lamb chops worth a try.
Lamb meatballs in a yoghurt gravy
The lamb meat is beaten with a walnut hammer to make it gooey after which fat and salt is rubbed in it. The meat balls are then poached to make the texture spongy after which they are cooked in a yogurt-based gravy called yakhni.
Small lamb dumplings in an onion, chilli and saffron gravy
This traditional recipe consists of lamb meatballs made with minced meat and poached in turmeric water to cook in a stock.
A traditional Kashmiri collard green preparation
Made with Kashmiri collard green that is grown in lake water and known for its bitter sharp taste, haakh is collard green cooked with fennel.
Saffron flavoured rice pudding with pistachio and cashew nuts
Khubani ka halwa
Fresh apricot pudding with dry fruits