When my son told me we were going to go on a mission trip to Pakistan with the youth group, we immediately decided to do a little research on Pakistani Culture.
Although my son and I were deeply interested in all aspects of the Pakistani culture, since I had just put him through chef's college, we were especially interested in Pakistani culture as it pertains to food.
We found out that Pakistani cuisine is rich with oils and chilies and the dishes mostly include meats like chicken and beef. Pork is not allowed due to their important Islam religious culture. We found that "chapati" also called "roti" which is made with flour is eaten almost all the time. Yogurt is used a lot in cooking as is the wide variety of curries and vegetables.
Two delicious sounding treats are samosas which are a pastry fried in oil and are triangular shaped, they are stuffed with potatoes and/or mixed vegetables or minced meat, and also pakoras which are vegetables dredged in flour and deep fried. Tea and milk is what everyone seems to drink in Pakistan.
Although each region seems to vary in the types of cuisine they eat, generally, eating habits remain the same. It is customary to eat with your right hand, utensils are not generally used, and it is important to eat everything on your plate as a sign that you respect the food you have received.
Muslims have Ramadan for 30 days at which time they fast each day from sun up to sundown and then after evening prayer they eat. If you are not Muslim person, it is important not to eat in front of a fasting Muslim during Ramadan.
We are excited about the new and exciting adventure in Pakistani Culture. We can hardly wait to go there to begin experiencing the exciting cuisine to bring home and add to our recipe books.