The aroma of authentic Goan cuisine and its unique spice palette is one of the major attractions of the sunshine state, apart from its mesmerising coastline. While the pandemic is not giving us the opportunity to explore these distinctive aspects in person, we have brought forth a list of 5 food items that have been GI tagged to Goa. So, let's undertake a virtual gastronomical adventure of intense Goan flavours!
Deriving its name from a Goan village, Harmal, these chillies are being grown here extensively for around two centuries now. Harmal is unique in size, colour and pungency and is considered a valuable crop, for it is used to add flavours to famous Goan dishes such as Chicken Xacuti. Harmal Chillies have been the recipient of GI tag quite recently.
Moira Bananas are known for their high nutritious value which can impart energy equivalent to that of a full meal. Apart from being used for their medicinal value to cure ailments, these bananas are usually on the ingredients list of several desserts as well. Goa received a GI tag for these bananas in 2020.
If you are a fan of caramel popcorn, then you will surely like Khaje- sugary sticks that resemble french fries! Available in three colours, these finger sized-sticks are encrusted with jaggery and ginger, with a sprinkle of sesame seeds. GI tagged in recent years, you can find this traditional festive sweet sold at almost all nook and corners of this state.
The first agricultural product from Goa to get a GI tag is Khola Chilli, also known as Canacona Chilli or Kholchi Mirchi. These chillies are usually used to make sauces and pickles, apart from being added in powdered form to dishes. Since receiving the GI tag, the Goan youth has actively engaged in farming it for the profits have considerably increased.
Lifting Indian spirits on an authentic Goan vacation is the state's famous alcoholic beverage, Feni. It is a triple-distilled spirit that is made from stomping tree-ripened cashew apples, that fall to the ground on their own. Its first distillation is Urak, a non-alcoholic summer drink of Goa.
Authorities have also filed to obtain GI tags for other specialities of Goa, such as Bebinca and Mankurad Mango.
We hope you enjoyed reading about the items on this list as we took you on this unusual tour of Goa and next time when here, do give your tastebuds a flavour of these savouries!