Thaalis and Platters Roundup

For those uninitiated, a thaali is an elaborate Indian meal that is served on a circular metal platter, which is also coincidentally called a thaali. I was in two minds before deciding to join this 'Thaalis and Platters' themed marathon as I wasn't sure whether I would be able to pull off this stunt, cooking at least ten thaali meals, irrespective of it's size. Doing the prep work, cooking the entire thaali, setting up the platter, clicking and doing the clean up after on my own seemed daunting. I have a back with a slipped disc that starts breaking even when I cook a couple of dishes for the blog and photograph them. This time however the theme got announced way in advance, giving plenty of time to mull over and jump in. Besides, I did not want to miss this themed marathon as I was sure that I would never ever attempt to cook a thaali on my own without the marathon group. 

I decided to try simple stuff first and see how it goes. Add an extra dish to the everyday meal and click, that kind of thing and in between a couple of festivals came and went and so, I had a few thaalis ready. 
I gained courage then to sign up for this marathon. I stuck to my plan of cooking around only 10 to 12 dishes for regional thaalis which I know pales in compression to the number of dishes served in a restaurant style thaali. I did not rush around this time to cook a complete thaali at one go as I knew that would be bad for my back. If possible, I froze some of the dishes as soon as I cooked, particularly some of my breakfast dishes. I refrigerated some of the dishes by cooking a day ahead when it came to some of the regional thaalis. This worked for me because I never have any power cuts where I live and we are used to freezing food. 

I decided to stick to only Indian themed platters for this marathon and not to deviate from it so that I could cover as many regional cuisines as possible. I covered most of the regions even if I was not able to cook meal platters from each state. Telangana and some of the north eastern regions being the exception. Even those omissions occurred because I had to redo some of my breakfast platters and flatbreads to suit the platter theme. Below is a quick look at my thaalis and platters that were cooked for this blogging marathon. Click on the links below (recipe names) for recipes.

First week - Everyday Meals
I reserved the first week for everyday meals. I cooked 4 Vegetarian Indian Thaalis, picking one each from eastern, northern, southern and western parts of India. These thaalis contain comfy, home style meals.  

Second Week - Breakfast Platters
It was breakfast platters for the second week. I had originally planned to cook breakfast platters from central, eastern, north, north- eastern, southern and western regions. I ended up doing combo dishes instead but at the last moment was able to add three regional platters. Banarasi kachori, dal pakwan. angakar roti, kailoreo were some of the dishes we tried for the first time and enjoyed while the chilka roti has become now a regular breakfast at home.

This theme was what I fretted over much, since these meals needed to be region specific and needed to be a thaali, in true sense though less in quantity compared to restaurant styled thaalis. I have two from my native state of Andhra Pradesh including a festive meal and a meal served on a taddinam / death anniversary, one each from eastern, northern, north eastern, and western parts of India.

Week 4 - Indian Flatbreads
I posted various Indian flatbreads during the fourth week. Healthy flatbreads, some new and some regular at my home. Most of the flatbread doughs can be prepared and refrigerated for a day or two. Just zap it in the microwave covered, for about 30 to 40 seconds before using it. 

Week 5 - Platters
I tried to include platters with regional relevance, two each from southern and northern parts of India.

Hope you guys enjoyed the round up as much as I had fun cooking them. The recipes can be accessed by clicking on the links.

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