Goa is the most popular destination and its cuisine has gained popularity worldwide and also in Dubai. Goan cuisine is not only varied but is also very diverse. The variety in Goan cuisine is affected by history. Goa was ruled over centuries by the Mughals, Hindu rulers, and Portuguese, who have left a permanent impact on the traditional style of Goan cooking and have given it an exotic edge.

As Goa is placed on the coastal belt, the Goans, Hindus, and Catholics relish rice, coconut, and fish (and a wide range of seafood) as their staple food. The native Hindu-Goans never added salt when rice was cooked, whereas the Catholics always did. Goan cooking is all about using local ingredients. Coconut milk, coconut oil, and meat flavor many dishes, and toddy, the juice of the coconut palm are also used to make vinegar and serve as a replacement for yeast. Another significant product of the palm is jaggery, a dark sweetener widely used in Goan sweets preparation.

Goan cooking uses liberal amounts of spices. Cumin, coriander, chili, garlic, and turmeric are the most commonly used. Another local component used to flavor fish curry is kokum (which gives a tangy taste like tamarind). Particular varieties of spices have led to several styles of cooking, which have subtly different flavors-masala, vindaloo, and balchao, being some of the most famous dishes. Cafrial has become a method of preparation, usually with marinated chicken, in which the meat is marinated in garlic, chili, and ginger and cooked dry.

For the content of the meal, fish is consumed in all variants, and pork and chicken meat are the most commonly used. Goan cuisine is not appropriate for Vegetarians, and as a compromise of various styles, such as cooking xacuti, caldinha are sometimes used for preparing vegetables. Two vegetable dishes are mergulho, made from papaya and pumpkin, and breadfruit curry.

Some of the must have Goan dishes in Dubai:

Sea Food: Goa is known for seafood; the “classic” food is fish curry and rice. Seafood is usually fried, grilled, or cooked in garlic sauce and served with chips (French fries) and salad. Kingfish is likely the most commonly seen in the menu, but many others like pomfret, doumer, shark, and mackerel.

Goan Sausages: Goan sausages or chouricos are spicy pork sausages adapted from Portuguese culinary traditions. The Goan sausages are well used salted and dried diced cooked pork. Once done, are strings of small sausages dried in the sun and then hung over the fire, which smoked slowly. 

Bebinca: The popular Goan dessert bebinca and dodol in Dubai is typically made using coconut milk, ghee, and flour, as well as eggs and sugar. Traditionally, the pudding consists of 16 layers, which have to be baked individually. There are some claims that it is made with 20 layers. But, ideally, it is 14 or 16 layers.

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