How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation?

How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation?

How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation? By Priya Krishna • 6 hours ago Chickpea flour is gaining attention thanks to its gluten-free binding properties. But the ingredient has been a staple of cooking for Indians, Pakistanis and many others for centuries. Pinkybird / Getty Images
There’s a specific section of my family’s fridge that is reserved for the large, seemingly bottomless tub of chickpea flour — or as we and lots of other Indians who also rely on it call it, besan — that my parents keep on hand. We’re not gluten-free, nor do we do a lot of baking. Yet chickpea flour shows up everywhere in our food. It’s the nutty coating for my mom’s green beans spiced with earthy ajwain , the key ingredient in her creamy, tangy, yogurt-based soup, kadhi , and the base for our favorite variety of laddoos , sweet, fudge-like balls flavored with ghee, sugar and nuts.
Across the many regional cuisines in India, chickpea flour is a common denominator: Gujaratis turn it into pudla , thin, savory crepes laced with turmeric and chilies. In Karnataka and Maharashtra, it can be found in jhunka , a spicy porridge. And in Andhra Pradesh, it is the thickener in Senagapindi Kura , an onion-heavy stew. For the country’s large vegetarian population, where eggs are often considered non-vegetarian, chickpea flour mixed with water serves as a convincing omelet replacement.
Indians — along with the Nepalese, Pakistanis, Italians, the French, and many others — have been cooking with chickpea flour for centuries. Americans, on the other hand, only seem to have woken up to the ingredient in the last decade or so. And they’ve woken up in a big way.
It’s hard to trace the exact origin of chickpea flour’s sudden popularity in the U.S. Anna Stockwell, the senior food editor of the publications Epicurious and Bon Appétit , said she first started seeing chickpea flour around 2009 on gluten-free blogs. Stockwell is gluten-free herself, and was excited to find a recipe for savory chickpea pancakes.
She didn’t know much about chickpea flour’s culinary heritage, but she was immediately excited. “Its binding power was magic,” she recalls. “All you have to do is combine chickpea flour and water, and suddenly you can make flatbread, or fritters or vegetable pancakes.” Still, Stockwell saw it as a niche ingredient — something only gluten-free consumers cared about. She wasn’t even allowed to call for it in Epicurious recipes.
Slowly but surely, that started to change. In 2010, one of the more popular recipes from Plenty , Yotam Ottolenghi’s bestselling cookbook, was a chickpea flour pancake, or socca , as it’s known in France, layered with tomatoes and onions. In 2015, food and fitness writer Camilla Saulsbury wrote the popular book The Chickpea Flour Cookbook . That was followed a year later by Chickpea Flour Does It All , by blogger Lindsey Love.
Lani Halliday, the founder of Brutus Bakeshop, a gluten-free Brooklyn bakery, says she noticed a huge uptick in the number of chickpea flour-based, gluten-free sweets available about a decade ago. For baked goods, chickpea flour worked uniquely well, “as it can hold air bubbles and hold moisture,” she says. Plus, “it was cheap, it was accessible, and it was versatile.”
Halliday launched her bakery in 2015. One of her bestselling items among both gluten-free and non-gluten-free customers was a chocolate cupcake made with chickpea flour.
Stockwell believes the mainstreaming of chickpea flour is directly linked to one company in particular — Banza. The company started producing its chickpea flour-based pasta in 2014, and by 2017, it was in 8,000-plus grocery stores and had raised $8 million in funding. The key to the company’s success? It didn’t exclusively market itself as a gluten-free product. Instead, it was branded as health food. And it was one of the first alternative pastas that had a smooth, al dente texture, just like the real thing.
“I had friends who had never heard of chickpea flour, but now they eat Banza,” Stockwell says. “It’s not because they are trying to eat gluten-free but because it’s a delicious and higher-protein pasta. It’s a substitute for empty carbs.”
This year, Epicurious was finally allowed to publish recipes with chickpea flour. Dennis Vaughn, the CEO of Bob’s Red Mill, says that in the past five years, chickpea flour has become a clear bestseller among the company’s sundry flour options.
“My grocery store doesn’t even carry red meat,” Stockwell says, “but they carry Bob’s Red Mill” chickpea flour.
In many ways, it has been weird to watch this ingredient that has always felt so quotidian to me become so ubiquitous so quickly in the U.S. This is certainly not the first Indian ingredient or dish this has happened to. Consider turmeric, chai, or khichdi , which have all been claimed by the wellness community and food bloggers as their own, often times without giving due credit to Indian cuisine. It baffles me that the vast majority of people I talk to are shocked to hear that chickpea flour has long been a common ingredient in my family’s cooking.
On the other hand, it was important to me when I was writing my new cookbook, Indian-ish , that people could find the ingredients for the dishes in their average grocery store. Because chickpea flour is now so common, I could include recipes like those addictive chickpea flour green beans, and the silky, soupy kadhi .
I’m not against chickpea flour entering the mainstream. But I wish that more of the stories I read about it, or the recipes I saw that featured it, didn’t frame it as a brand-new discovery, and completely ignore its heritage.
No one culture can “own” an ingredient — I’m literally writing this with a box of Banza chickpea pasta in my kitchen cabinet — but let’s not treat food like it exists in a vacuum. There’s context for that chickpea flour flatbread you’re making for dinner. Don’t take it for granted.
Priya Krishna is a food writer who contributes to The New York Times, Bon Appétit , and others. She also serves as one of the hosts of Bon Appétit’s video series, From the Test Kitchen . She is the author of the cookbook Indian-ish: Recipes And Antics From A Modern American Family . Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @ PKgourmet Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org. Partners:

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How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation?

How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation? By Priya Krishna • 7 hours ago Chickpea flour is gaining attention thanks to its gluten-free binding properties. But the ingredient has been a staple of cooking for Indians, Pakistanis and many others for centuries. Pinkybird / Getty Images
There’s a specific section of my family’s fridge that is reserved for the large, seemingly bottomless tub of chickpea flour — or as we and lots of other Indians who also rely on it call it, besan — that my parents keep on hand. We’re not gluten-free, nor do we do a lot of baking. Yet chickpea flour shows up everywhere in our food. It’s the nutty coating for my mom’s green beans spiced with earthy ajwain , the key ingredient in her creamy, tangy, yogurt-based soup, kadhi , and the base for our favorite variety of laddoos , sweet, fudge-like balls flavored with ghee, sugar and nuts.
Across the many regional cuisines in India, chickpea flour is a common denominator: Gujaratis turn it into pudla , thin, savory crepes laced with turmeric and chilies. In Karnataka and Maharashtra, it can be found in jhunka , a spicy porridge. And in Andhra Pradesh, it is the thickener in Senagapindi Kura , an onion-heavy stew. For the country’s large vegetarian population, where eggs are often considered non-vegetarian, chickpea flour mixed with water serves as a convincing omelet replacement.
Indians — along with the Nepalese, Pakistanis, Italians, the French, and many others — have been cooking with chickpea flour for centuries. Americans, on the other hand, only seem to have woken up to the ingredient in the last decade or so. And they’ve woken up in a big way.
It’s hard to trace the exact origin of chickpea flour’s sudden popularity in the U.S. Anna Stockwell, the senior food editor of the publications Epicurious and Bon Appétit , said she first started seeing chickpea flour around 2009 on gluten-free blogs. Stockwell is gluten-free herself, and was excited to find a recipe for savory chickpea pancakes.
She didn’t know much about chickpea flour’s culinary heritage, but she was immediately excited. “Its binding power was magic,” she recalls. “All you have to do is combine chickpea flour and water, and suddenly you can make flatbread, or fritters or vegetable pancakes.” Still, Stockwell saw it as a niche ingredient — something only gluten-free consumers cared about. She wasn’t even allowed to call for it in Epicurious recipes.
Slowly but surely, that started to change. In 2010, one of the more popular recipes from Plenty , Yotam Ottolenghi’s bestselling cookbook, was a chickpea flour pancake, or socca , as it’s known in France, layered with tomatoes and onions. In 2015, food and fitness writer Camilla Saulsbury wrote the popular book The Chickpea Flour Cookbook . That was followed a year later by Chickpea Flour Does It All , by blogger Lindsey Love.
Lani Halliday, the founder of Brutus Bakeshop, a gluten-free Brooklyn bakery, says she noticed a huge uptick in the number of chickpea flour-based, gluten-free sweets available about a decade ago. For baked goods, chickpea flour worked uniquely well, “as it can hold air bubbles and hold moisture,” she says. Plus, “it was cheap, it was accessible, and it was versatile.”
Halliday launched her bakery in 2015. One of her bestselling items among both gluten-free and non-gluten-free customers was a chocolate cupcake made with chickpea flour.
Stockwell believes the mainstreaming of chickpea flour is directly linked to one company in particular — Banza. The company started producing its chickpea flour-based pasta in 2014, and by 2017, it was in 8,000-plus grocery stores and had raised $8 million in funding. The key to the company’s success? It didn’t exclusively market itself as a gluten-free product. Instead, it was branded as health food. And it was one of the first alternative pastas that had a smooth, al dente texture, just like the real thing.
“I had friends who had never heard of chickpea flour, but now they eat Banza,” Stockwell says. “It’s not because they are trying to eat gluten-free but because it’s a delicious and higher-protein pasta. It’s a substitute for empty carbs.”
This year, Epicurious was finally allowed to publish recipes with chickpea flour. Dennis Vaughn, the CEO of Bob’s Red Mill, says that in the past five years, chickpea flour has become a clear bestseller among the company’s sundry flour options.
“My grocery store doesn’t even carry red meat,” Stockwell says, “but they carry Bob’s Red Mill” chickpea flour.
In many ways, it has been weird to watch this ingredient that has always felt so quotidian to me become so ubiquitous so quickly in the U.S. This is certainly not the first Indian ingredient or dish this has happened to. Consider turmeric, chai, or khichdi , which have all been claimed by the wellness community and food bloggers as their own, often times without giving due credit to Indian cuisine. It baffles me that the vast majority of people I talk to are shocked to hear that chickpea flour has long been a common ingredient in my family’s cooking.
On the other hand, it was important to me when I was writing my new cookbook, Indian-ish , that people could find the ingredients for the dishes in their average grocery store. Because chickpea flour is now so common, I could include recipes like those addictive chickpea flour green beans, and the silky, soupy kadhi .
I’m not against chickpea flour entering the mainstream. But I wish that more of the stories I read about it, or the recipes I saw that featured it, didn’t frame it as a brand-new discovery, and completely ignore its heritage.
No one culture can “own” an ingredient — I’m literally writing this with a box of Banza chickpea pasta in my kitchen cabinet — but let’s not treat food like it exists in a vacuum. There’s context for that chickpea flour flatbread you’re making for dinner. Don’t take it for granted.
Priya Krishna is a food writer who contributes to The New York Times, Bon Appétit , and others. She also serves as one of the hosts of Bon Appétit’s video series, From the Test Kitchen . She is the author of the cookbook Indian-ish: Recipes And Antics From A Modern American Family . Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @ PKgourmet Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org. KSUT Content Partners

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20 Essential San Antonio Buffets That Aren’t Golden Corral | San Antonio | Slideshows | San Antonio Current

May 09, 2019 Slideshows » Food & Drink 20 Essential San Antonio Buffets That Aren’t Golden Corral By San Antonio Current Staff Share on Facebook San Antonio likes to eat, there’s no doubt about that. But sometimes, we like to feast. Conveniently, the Alamo City is home to a wide selection of all-you-can-eat spots, ranging from homestyle American cuisine and Asian fusions to Brazilian steakhouses and more. From the fancy to the affordable, here are 24 essential San Antonio buffets that you should visit instead of Golden Corral. OF 20 Chama Gaucha Brazilian Steakhouse 18318 Sonterra Pl, (210) 564-9400, chamagaucha.com A favorite for quality meats, Chama Gaucha is an all-you-can-eat churrascaria serving up grilled beef, pork, chicken and lamb. Even if you’re the most raging carnivore, you won’t be able to pace yourself on the salad bar either. No matter how big your appetite, this upscale Brazilian steakhouse is not one to be missed. Photo via Instagram / jason_risner_photography The Pigpen 106 Pershing Ave, (210) 267-9136, thepigpensa.com Be prepared to wait during Sunday brunch at the Pigpen, but know that it is totally worth it. The all-you-can-eat brunch option lets you fill your plate with brisket, fried chicken, fried catfish, pulled pork, sausage patties, blueberry sausage links, bacon, homemade biscuits, pancakes, scrambled eggs, cheese grits, hash browns, mac & cheese (!), black eyed peas, collard greens and seasonal fruit. Oh, and desserts too if you saved room. Honestly, we don’t deserve this buffet, but we’re so thankful. Photo via Instagram / the_pigpen_bar Chas Market & Kitchen 1431 N Pine St, (210) 227-1521, chaskitchen.com Head to this inconspicuous East Side market and enjoy the robust flavors of the East – Asian flavors, that is. Sure, the menu is massive here (have you tried the tacos?!), but definitely take advantage of the all-you-can-eat deal on Korean meats like short ribs, pork belly, bulgogi, brisket and more. Photo via Instagram / jesselizarraras Tandoor Palace 8783 Wurzbach Road, (210) 592-1211, tandoorpalacerestaurant.com Consider the homey digs as proof that the flavors are authentic here. North Indian fare rules supreme at Tandoor Place, meaning it specializes in tandoori dishes (with a variety of Indian breads to pair them with). There’s vegetarians options too, if that’s what you’re looking for. Photo via Instagram / _suzyylee Galpao Gaucho Brazilian Steakhouse 2318 N Loop 1604 W, (210) 497-2500, galpaogauchousa.com While not a buffet per se, you can enjoy all the meat you could ever desire here. This buffet-style Brazilian steakhouse comes through with 17 cuts of meat that you can taste with the “full experience” option. That’s paired with the salad bar and hot sides. Seriously, you’ll have the meat sweats here. Photo via Instagram / sanantoniomunchies Colonial Room Restaurant 204 Alamo Plaza, (210) 225-6196, mengerhotel.com Located inside the Menger Hotel, the Colonial Room’s lunchtime buffet, offered daily, should be considered a bucket list item for every San Antonian. Complete with attentive service and beautiful decor (especially during the holidays), this rotating menu offers standard dishes as well as a waffle bar or pasta bar. Photo by Sarah Martinez El Coqui Restaurant 5036 W Military Dr, (210) 645-6465, elcoquisatx.com Venture out toward Lackland AFB and dine in at El Coqui. Known as one of the city’s prime spots for Puerto Rican fare, you can indulge on these flavors during the lunch buffet offered Monday through Saturday. We see it now – a plate full of maduros. Yum! Photo via Instagram / stacia_x0 India Palace 8474 Fredericksburg Road, (210) 692-5262, indiapalacesatx.com Hidden away in the corner of a strip mall, India Palace is regarded as one of the best spots for authentic Indian dishes. Though small, you’ll still be able to enjoy plenty of flavor with selections such as chicken tikka masala, karahi chicken, samosas and plenty of naan. Come with an empty stomach ‘cause you’ll definitely want to indulge here. Photo via Instagram / rabidmeerkat Dimassi’s Mediterranean Buffet 4841 Fredericksburg Road, (210) 525-1231, dimassis.com Casual digs and a range of Lebanese-Mediterranean dishes await you over at Dimassi’s. The all-day buffet serves up classic finds like kabobs, gyro meat, hummus and of course lots of pita bread. Plus, there are vegan and gluten-free items available. It’s a win-win. Photo via Instagram / plantbasedciara King Buffet 6200 Bandera Road, Leon Valley, (210) 647-8888, kingbuffetsa.com You can go big with your appetite at King Buffet. Inside this spacious joint, you’ll find the classic Chinese and American dishes synonymous with a Chinese buffet, plus Mongolian BBQ, sushi and even a salad bar. Bring the family and get ready to feast. Photo via Instagram / ferogu India Oven 1031 Patricia Ste 106, (210) 544-5968, indiaovensa.com Specializing in North Indian dishes, you can stop in for the lunch buffet to truly eat. Expect all the traditional biryani, masala and tandoori selections, plus vegetarian options. There’s also beer and wine available, so your dining experience truly can’t get any better. Photo via Instagram / kevinm40 Hon Machi Japanese & Korean BBQ 19186 Blanco Road #103, (210) 670-7128, koreanbbqsa.com For dinner with a whole lot of rules, you can hit up Hon Machi. With a maximum eating time of 90 minutes, this lunchtime buffet lets you get your fill of bulgogi, beef brisket, teriyaki chicken breast, spicy pork shoulder, sweet chicken thigh, pork belly (spicy or not) and spicy chicken. Your all-you-can-eat meat party is accompanied with salad, miso soup, steamed rice, Kim Chi and pickled radish. Photo via Instagram / linhnie_ Laguna Cafe 8403 TX-151 #110, (210) 368-9455, facebook.com/fusioneats Not to be confused with Laguna Madre, this cafe is fully prepared to feed your face. With a buffet on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays during lunchtime, this offering gives you access to lots and lots of Filipino dishes as well as Hawaiian comfort food. Go today if you’ve never been, you’ll be thankful you did. Photo via Yelp / Rose L. Teppanyaki Chinese Buffet 6719 Northwest Loop 410, (210) 520-0588, teppanyakichinesebuffet.com Chinese dishes – and lots of ‘em – can be yours if you swing by Teppanyaki. In addition, you’ll be able to score Japanese and American fare, hibachi, seafood, steaks, sushi and oysters if you so wish. There’s also salad and desserts! Photo via Instagram / fightrudyfight Susie’s Lumpia House 7914 Culebra Rd Ste 109, (210) 616-4354, facebook.com/SusiesLumpiaHouse Celebrate the weekend over at Susie’s Lumpia House with its weekend buffet. You’ll be able to nosh on a variety of Asian foods, particularly Filipino finds. The lineup may be small, but the flavors will have you getting plate after you plate – and you will certainly enjoy yourself doing so. Photo via Instagram / xoxosummers Spice Fine Indian Cuisine 4987 Northwest Loop 410, (210) 253-9658, spicefineindiancuisine.com Ironically enough, this Indian spot is located right next to a Golden Corral. Never mind the chain and head here to stock up on traditional North and South Indian dishes. The glorious smells alone will have you feeling satisfied, but come hungry to enjoy lots of flavors. Photo via Instagram / spice_fine_indian_cuisine Deco Cafe Filipiniana 6812 Bandera Road, Suite 101, Leon Valley, (210) 734-3326, decocafefilipiniana.com Plate after plate of Filipino food can be yours if you head over to this Leon Valley spot. Offered every weekend, this lunch buffet lets your choose from more than 25 dishes, mostly Filipino but also other Asian and American selections. Be sure to order a boba tea for an extra treat. Photo via Instagram / g.i.joao Multiple locations, linsinternationalbuffet.com With two locations in San Antonio, Lin’s brings a solid array of delicacies, including pho, brisket, sushi, pork ribs, sausage, jumbo shrimp, pizza, dim sum, mussels, pasta, salad and desserts. During specials times (such as dinner and on the weekends), you can find extra goodies like steak, crab legs, crawfish and oysters. Photo via Instagram / linsbuffetsa Lily’s Philippine Restaurant 8210 Glider Ave, (210) 674-7007, facebook.com Head to this Far West Side spot for your fill of Filipino food. Regarded as being fresh and well-cooked, authentic dishes are readily available – even harder-to-find treats like bilo bilo. The buffet is served up every Sunday, so consider stopping by one of these Sunday Fundays. Photo via Yelp / Denise D. Filipino Express Restaurant 4963 Northwest Loop 410, (210) 681-0089, filipinoexpresstogo.com Though you can totally score some delicious carry-out, you can also choose to indulge in authentic Filipino fare. The $7.99 all-you-can-eat buffet is offered during lunch time on select days, so be sure to call ahead and enjoy this goodness. Photo via Instagram /

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How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation?

How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation? By Priya Krishna • 5 hours ago Chickpea flour is gaining attention thanks to its gluten-free binding properties. But the ingredient has been a staple of cooking for Indians, Pakistanis and many others for centuries. Pinkybird / Getty Images
There’s a specific section of my family’s fridge that is reserved for the large, seemingly bottomless tub of chickpea flour — or as we and lots of other Indians who also rely on it call it, besan — that my parents keep on hand. We’re not gluten-free, nor do we do a lot of baking. Yet chickpea flour shows up everywhere in our food. It’s the nutty coating for my mom’s green beans spiced with earthy ajwain , the key ingredient in her creamy, tangy, yogurt-based soup, kadhi , and the base for our favorite variety of laddoos , sweet, fudge-like balls flavored with ghee, sugar and nuts.
Across the many regional cuisines in India, chickpea flour is a common denominator: Gujaratis turn it into pudla , thin, savory crepes laced with turmeric and chilies. In Karnataka and Maharashtra, it can be found in jhunka , a spicy porridge. And in Andhra Pradesh, it is the thickener in Senagapindi Kura , an onion-heavy stew. For the country’s large vegetarian population, where eggs are often considered non-vegetarian, chickpea flour mixed with water serves as a convincing omelet replacement.
Indians — along with the Nepalese, Pakistanis, Italians, the French, and many others — have been cooking with chickpea flour for centuries. Americans, on the other hand, only seem to have woken up to the ingredient in the last decade or so. And they’ve woken up in a big way.
It’s hard to trace the exact origin of chickpea flour’s sudden popularity in the U.S. Anna Stockwell, the senior food editor of the publications Epicurious and Bon Appétit , said she first started seeing chickpea flour around 2009 on gluten-free blogs. Stockwell is gluten-free herself, and was excited to find a recipe for savory chickpea pancakes.
She didn’t know much about chickpea flour’s culinary heritage, but she was immediately excited. “Its binding power was magic,” she recalls. “All you have to do is combine chickpea flour and water, and suddenly you can make flatbread, or fritters or vegetable pancakes.” Still, Stockwell saw it as a niche ingredient — something only gluten-free consumers cared about. She wasn’t even allowed to call for it in Epicurious recipes.
Slowly but surely, that started to change. In 2010, one of the more popular recipes from Plenty , Yotam Ottolenghi’s bestselling cookbook, was a chickpea flour pancake, or socca , as it’s known in France, layered with tomatoes and onions. In 2015, food and fitness writer Camilla Saulsbury wrote the popular book The Chickpea Flour Cookbook . That was followed a year later by Chickpea Flour Does It All , by blogger Lindsey Love.
Lani Halliday, the founder of Brutus Bakeshop, a gluten-free Brooklyn bakery, says she noticed a huge uptick in the number of chickpea flour-based, gluten-free sweets available about a decade ago. For baked goods, chickpea flour worked uniquely well, “as it can hold air bubbles and hold moisture,” she says. Plus, “it was cheap, it was accessible, and it was versatile.”
Halliday launched her bakery in 2015. One of her bestselling items among both gluten-free and non-gluten-free customers was a chocolate cupcake made with chickpea flour.
Stockwell believes the mainstreaming of chickpea flour is directly linked to one company in particular — Banza. The company started producing its chickpea flour-based pasta in 2014, and by 2017, it was in 8,000-plus grocery stores and had raised $8 million in funding. The key to the company’s success? It didn’t exclusively market itself as a gluten-free product. Instead, it was branded as health food. And it was one of the first alternative pastas that had a smooth, al dente texture, just like the real thing.
“I had friends who had never heard of chickpea flour, but now they eat Banza,” Stockwell says. “It’s not because they are trying to eat gluten-free but because it’s a delicious and higher-protein pasta. It’s a substitute for empty carbs.”
This year, Epicurious was finally allowed to publish recipes with chickpea flour. Dennis Vaughn, the CEO of Bob’s Red Mill, says that in the past five years, chickpea flour has become a clear bestseller among the company’s sundry flour options.
“My grocery store doesn’t even carry red meat,” Stockwell says, “but they carry Bob’s Red Mill” chickpea flour.
In many ways, it has been weird to watch this ingredient that has always felt so quotidian to me become so ubiquitous so quickly in the U.S. This is certainly not the first Indian ingredient or dish this has happened to. Consider turmeric, chai, or khichdi , which have all been claimed by the wellness community and food bloggers as their own, often times without giving due credit to Indian cuisine. It baffles me that the vast majority of people I talk to are shocked to hear that chickpea flour has long been a common ingredient in my family’s cooking.
On the other hand, it was important to me when I was writing my new cookbook, Indian-ish , that people could find the ingredients for the dishes in their average grocery store. Because chickpea flour is now so common, I could include recipes like those addictive chickpea flour green beans, and the silky, soupy kadhi .
I’m not against chickpea flour entering the mainstream. But I wish that more of the stories I read about it, or the recipes I saw that featured it, didn’t frame it as a brand-new discovery, and completely ignore its heritage.
No one culture can “own” an ingredient — I’m literally writing this with a box of Banza chickpea pasta in my kitchen cabinet — but let’s not treat food like it exists in a vacuum. There’s context for that chickpea flour flatbread you’re making for dinner. Don’t take it for granted.
Priya Krishna is a food writer who contributes to The New York Times, Bon Appétit , and others. She also serves as one of the hosts of Bon Appétit’s video series, From the Test Kitchen . She is the author of the cookbook Indian-ish: Recipes And Antics From A Modern American Family . Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @ PKgourmet Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org. Find and follow us on: © 2019 Maine Public

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How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation?

How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation? By Priya Krishna • 10 hours ago Chickpea flour is gaining attention thanks to its gluten-free binding properties. But the ingredient has been a staple of cooking for Indians, Pakistanis and many others for centuries. Pinkybird / Getty Images
There’s a specific section of my family’s fridge that is reserved for the large, seemingly bottomless tub of chickpea flour — or as we and lots of other Indians who also rely on it call it, besan — that my parents keep on hand. We’re not gluten-free, nor do we do a lot of baking. Yet chickpea flour shows up everywhere in our food. It’s the nutty coating for my mom’s green beans spiced with earthy ajwain , the key ingredient in her creamy, tangy, yogurt-based soup, kadhi , and the base for our favorite variety of laddoos , sweet, fudge-like balls flavored with ghee, sugar and nuts.
Across the many regional cuisines in India, chickpea flour is a common denominator: Gujaratis turn it into pudla , thin, savory crepes laced with turmeric and chilies. In Karnataka and Maharashtra, it can be found in jhunka , a spicy porridge. And in Andhra Pradesh, it is the thickener in Senagapindi Kura , an onion-heavy stew. For the country’s large vegetarian population, where eggs are often considered non-vegetarian, chickpea flour mixed with water serves as a convincing omelet replacement.
Indians — along with the Nepalese, Pakistanis, Italians, the French, and many others — have been cooking with chickpea flour for centuries. Americans, on the other hand, only seem to have woken up to the ingredient in the last decade or so. And they’ve woken up in a big way.
It’s hard to trace the exact origin of chickpea flour’s sudden popularity in the U.S. Anna Stockwell, the senior food editor of the publications Epicurious and Bon Appétit , said she first started seeing chickpea flour around 2009 on gluten-free blogs. Stockwell is gluten-free herself, and was excited to find a recipe for savory chickpea pancakes.
She didn’t know much about chickpea flour’s culinary heritage, but she was immediately excited. “Its binding power was magic,” she recalls. “All you have to do is combine chickpea flour and water, and suddenly you can make flatbread, or fritters or vegetable pancakes.” Still, Stockwell saw it as a niche ingredient — something only gluten-free consumers cared about. She wasn’t even allowed to call for it in Epicurious recipes.
Slowly but surely, that started to change. In 2010, one of the more popular recipes from Plenty , Yotam Ottolenghi’s bestselling cookbook, was a chickpea flour pancake, or socca , as it’s known in France, layered with tomatoes and onions. In 2015, food and fitness writer Camilla Saulsbury wrote the popular book The Chickpea Flour Cookbook . That was followed a year later by Chickpea Flour Does It All , by blogger Lindsey Love.
Lani Halliday, the founder of Brutus Bakeshop, a gluten-free Brooklyn bakery, says she noticed a huge uptick in the number of chickpea flour-based, gluten-free sweets available about a decade ago. For baked goods, chickpea flour worked uniquely well, “as it can hold air bubbles and hold moisture,” she says. Plus, “it was cheap, it was accessible, and it was versatile.”
Halliday launched her bakery in 2015. One of her bestselling items among both gluten-free and non-gluten-free customers was a chocolate cupcake made with chickpea flour.
Stockwell believes the mainstreaming of chickpea flour is directly linked to one company in particular — Banza. The company started producing its chickpea flour-based pasta in 2014, and by 2017, it was in 8,000-plus grocery stores and had raised $8 million in funding. The key to the company’s success? It didn’t exclusively market itself as a gluten-free product. Instead, it was branded as health food. And it was one of the first alternative pastas that had a smooth, al dente texture, just like the real thing.
“I had friends who had never heard of chickpea flour, but now they eat Banza,” Stockwell says. “It’s not because they are trying to eat gluten-free but because it’s a delicious and higher-protein pasta. It’s a substitute for empty carbs.”
This year, Epicurious was finally allowed to publish recipes with chickpea flour. Dennis Vaughn, the CEO of Bob’s Red Mill, says that in the past five years, chickpea flour has become a clear bestseller among the company’s sundry flour options.
“My grocery store doesn’t even carry red meat,” Stockwell says, “but they carry Bob’s Red Mill” chickpea flour.
In many ways, it has been weird to watch this ingredient that has always felt so quotidian to me become so ubiquitous so quickly in the U.S. This is certainly not the first Indian ingredient or dish this has happened to. Consider turmeric, chai, or khichdi , which have all been claimed by the wellness community and food bloggers as their own, often times without giving due credit to Indian cuisine. It baffles me that the vast majority of people I talk to are shocked to hear that chickpea flour has long been a common ingredient in my family’s cooking.
On the other hand, it was important to me when I was writing my new cookbook, Indian-ish , that people could find the ingredients for the dishes in their average grocery store. Because chickpea flour is now so common, I could include recipes like those addictive chickpea flour green beans, and the silky, soupy kadhi .
I’m not against chickpea flour entering the mainstream. But I wish that more of the stories I read about it, or the recipes I saw that featured it, didn’t frame it as a brand-new discovery, and completely ignore its heritage.
No one culture can “own” an ingredient — I’m literally writing this with a box of Banza chickpea pasta in my kitchen cabinet — but let’s not treat food like it exists in a vacuum. There’s context for that chickpea flour flatbread you’re making for dinner. Don’t take it for granted.
Priya Krishna is a food writer who contributes to The New York Times, Bon Appétit , and others. She also serves as one of the hosts of Bon Appétit’s video series, From the Test Kitchen . She is the author of the cookbook Indian-ish: Recipes And Antics From A Modern American Family . Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @ PKgourmet Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org. © 2019 Valley Public Radio

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Best Restaurants in New Delhi, India for Fine Dining

Reblog Whether it’s the traditional curries or the international flavours brought back home by world trotted culinary chefs, Delhi harbours something for everybody. Full of flavours and wholesomeness, the Indian food palette is as colourful as the country itself. The raging popularity of Indian cuisine amongst travellers does not come as much of a surprise. For an ultimate fine dining experience in Delhi, we recommend these top five restaurants. Best Restaurants in New Delhi, India for Fine Dining More Loved by food critics as well as diners from around the globe, New Delhi-based The Lodhi’s Indian Accent has made it to the list of World’s 50 Best Restaurants . What makes Indian Accent stand out amongst its competitors is the amalgamation of global ingredients conceptualised with the flavours and traditions of India under the leadership of Chef Manish Mehrotra. Whilst the Blue Cheese Naan, Duck Shami Kebab, Dal Makhni, Pork Spare Ribs, and the classic Butter chicken are quite the rage amongst the clientele, Chef Manish Mehrotra champions a vegetarian dish as his favourite – Soy Keema. Curated perfectly for International guests’ taste buds and Indian hearts, the food at Indian Accent is both comforting and crafted visually with great culinary aesthetics before being presented. Best Restaurants in New Delhi, India for Fine Dining More Nestled in the heart of Delhi, Connaught Place is this culinary landmark, The Embassy Restaurant. A favourite amongst celebrities and politicians alike, The Embassy Restaurant draws its audience for the remembrance of the newly decolonised India. Started in 1948 by two friends from Karachi, The Embassy Restaurant has kept its recipes intact even several decades later. Far from being modern, the recipes at The Embassy Restaurant are from a pre-partition era and boast of age-old dishes. One of the most beloved dishes here is Murgh Masalam – chicken breast cooked in a creamy almond sauce dripping in multiple flavours but not spicy as the recipes curated back then catered to the elite European class present in India. Samosas at The Embassy Restaurant are one complete meal in itself and the Bhatooras of the Chana Bhatoora are known for their gigantic size. Best Restaurants in New Delhi, India for Fine Dining More Story continues Image Source: Ziu Facebook Page Thai food might have a complex nature when it comes to flavour but under the leadership of globe-trotting Chef and Owner Gurmehar Sethi, Ziu serves not only the best Thai food in town but a sensory experience like no other. The green and blues alongside light structures and lavish glasswork in Ziu’s interior decor captivates one with a zen-like feeling so that their gastronomical experience is not a meal but like meditation. Whilst Ziu’s innovative Thai culinary attractions such as Coconut Ice Cream, Burnt Garlic Rice, and Sushi refine the appetite of their guests, their bite-sized Kanom Krok is the star of their menu. The familiarity with the original traditional recipes of Thai food blend with ease with the modern notes of Ziu. 4. Bukhara, I.T.C One of I.T.C’s best known and Delhi’s most expensive restaurants, Bukhara has withstood all the trends in the culinary industry and turned guests into loyal fans of its North West Frontier cuisine. Bukhara, with its rugged interiors, low seating and eccentric paving walls, encourages guests to ditch the cutlery and devour their food with hands to enjoy their flavourful food to its utmost. As famous as Delhi is for Tandoori food, Bukhara has not yet met its competitor – the Indian traditional ovens of clay used for making kebabs and bread. The chefs at Bukhara follow a simple policy with their forty-year-old menu to involve various senses – touch, taste, smell and sight. The spices known for the vigorous flavour are personally handpicked by the chefs and in the end, it boils down to the art of slow cooking over twenty hours for the rich and creamy consistency of the food. It comes as no shock that the most popular dish is Dal Bukhara paired with Sikandari Raan. The Bukhara special Murgh Malai Kabab has its own fair share fans all over the globe. Best Restaurants in New Delhi, India for Fine Dining More Image Source: Masala Library Facebook Page As the chef cum owner himself stated, “We serve memories, not food”, Masala Library by Jiggs Kalra brings a unique culinary experience of Indian spices and herbs with molecular gastronomy under one roof. Masala Library brings forth flavours from North to South of India with an Avante Garde presentation to serve their guests not just food but an experience that is not available anywhere else. Their menu dates back four decades and their team of chefs is as diverse as India itself; every state that Masala Library hosts are represented by a native chef and the recipes are traditional to their roots, enabling the guests to experience true flavours of each dish ordered. Known best for their vegetarian menu and Indian curries, the guests love the deconstructed Samosas, Galouti Kebab, Mushroom Soup, Rabri and the cocktails and mocktails at Masala Library.

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How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation?

How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation? By Priya Krishna • 4 hours ago Chickpea flour is gaining attention thanks to its gluten-free binding properties. But the ingredient has been a staple of cooking for Indians, Pakistanis and many others for centuries. Pinkybird / Getty Images
There’s a specific section of my family’s fridge that is reserved for the large, seemingly bottomless tub of chickpea flour — or as we and lots of other Indians who also rely on it call it, besan — that my parents keep on hand. We’re not gluten-free, nor do we do a lot of baking. Yet chickpea flour shows up everywhere in our food. It’s the nutty coating for my mom’s green beans spiced with earthy ajwain , the key ingredient in her creamy, tangy, yogurt-based soup, kadhi , and the base for our favorite variety of laddoos , sweet, fudge-like balls flavored with ghee, sugar and nuts.
Across the many regional cuisines in India, chickpea flour is a common denominator: Gujaratis turn it into pudla , thin, savory crepes laced with turmeric and chilies. In Karnataka and Maharashtra, it can be found in jhunka , a spicy porridge. And in Andhra Pradesh, it is the thickener in Senagapindi Kura , an onion-heavy stew. For the country’s large vegetarian population, where eggs are often considered non-vegetarian, chickpea flour mixed with water serves as a convincing omelet replacement.
Indians — along with the Nepalese, Pakistanis, Italians, the French, and many others — have been cooking with chickpea flour for centuries. Americans, on the other hand, only seem to have woken up to the ingredient in the last decade or so. And they’ve woken up in a big way.
It’s hard to trace the exact origin of chickpea flour’s sudden popularity in the U.S. Anna Stockwell, the senior food editor of the publications Epicurious and Bon Appétit , said she first started seeing chickpea flour around 2009 on gluten-free blogs. Stockwell is gluten-free herself, and was excited to find a recipe for savory chickpea pancakes.
She didn’t know much about chickpea flour’s culinary heritage, but she was immediately excited. “Its binding power was magic,” she recalls. “All you have to do is combine chickpea flour and water, and suddenly you can make flatbread, or fritters or vegetable pancakes.” Still, Stockwell saw it as a niche ingredient — something only gluten-free consumers cared about. She wasn’t even allowed to call for it in Epicurious recipes.
Slowly but surely, that started to change. In 2010, one of the more popular recipes from Plenty , Yotam Ottolenghi’s bestselling cookbook, was a chickpea flour pancake, or socca , as it’s known in France, layered with tomatoes and onions. In 2015, food and fitness writer Camilla Saulsbury wrote the popular book The Chickpea Flour Cookbook . That was followed a year later by Chickpea Flour Does It All , by blogger Lindsey Love.
Lani Halliday, the founder of Brutus Bakeshop, a gluten-free Brooklyn bakery, says she noticed a huge uptick in the number of chickpea flour-based, gluten-free sweets available about a decade ago. For baked goods, chickpea flour worked uniquely well, “as it can hold air bubbles and hold moisture,” she says. Plus, “it was cheap, it was accessible, and it was versatile.”
Halliday launched her bakery in 2015. One of her bestselling items among both gluten-free and non-gluten-free customers was a chocolate cupcake made with chickpea flour.
Stockwell believes the mainstreaming of chickpea flour is directly linked to one company in particular — Banza. The company started producing its chickpea flour-based pasta in 2014, and by 2017, it was in 8,000-plus grocery stores and had raised $8 million in funding. The key to the company’s success? It didn’t exclusively market itself as a gluten-free product. Instead, it was branded as health food. And it was one of the first alternative pastas that had a smooth, al dente texture, just like the real thing.
“I had friends who had never heard of chickpea flour, but now they eat Banza,” Stockwell says. “It’s not because they are trying to eat gluten-free but because it’s a delicious and higher-protein pasta. It’s a substitute for empty carbs.”
This year, Epicurious was finally allowed to publish recipes with chickpea flour. Dennis Vaughn, the CEO of Bob’s Red Mill, says that in the past five years, chickpea flour has become a clear bestseller among the company’s sundry flour options.
“My grocery store doesn’t even carry red meat,” Stockwell says, “but they carry Bob’s Red Mill” chickpea flour.
In many ways, it has been weird to watch this ingredient that has always felt so quotidian to me become so ubiquitous so quickly in the U.S. This is certainly not the first Indian ingredient or dish this has happened to. Consider turmeric, chai, or khichdi , which have all been claimed by the wellness community and food bloggers as their own, often times without giving due credit to Indian cuisine. It baffles me that the vast majority of people I talk to are shocked to hear that chickpea flour has long been a common ingredient in my family’s cooking.
On the other hand, it was important to me when I was writing my new cookbook, Indian-ish , that people could find the ingredients for the dishes in their average grocery store. Because chickpea flour is now so common, I could include recipes like those addictive chickpea flour green beans, and the silky, soupy kadhi .
I’m not against chickpea flour entering the mainstream. But I wish that more of the stories I read about it, or the recipes I saw that featured it, didn’t frame it as a brand-new discovery, and completely ignore its heritage.
No one culture can “own” an ingredient — I’m literally writing this with a box of Banza chickpea pasta in my kitchen cabinet — but let’s not treat food like it exists in a vacuum. There’s context for that chickpea flour flatbread you’re making for dinner. Don’t take it for granted.
Priya Krishna is a food writer who contributes to The New York Times, Bon Appétit , and others. She also serves as one of the hosts of Bon Appétit’s video series, From the Test Kitchen . She is the author of the cookbook Indian-ish: Recipes And Antics From A Modern American Family . Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @ PKgourmet Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org. Our Partners

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How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation?

How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation? By Priya Krishna • 9 hours ago Chickpea flour is gaining attention thanks to its gluten-free binding properties. But the ingredient has been a staple of cooking for Indians, Pakistanis and many others for centuries. Pinkybird / Getty Images
There’s a specific section of my family’s fridge that is reserved for the large, seemingly bottomless tub of chickpea flour — or as we and lots of other Indians who also rely on it call it, besan — that my parents keep on hand. We’re not gluten-free, nor do we do a lot of baking. Yet chickpea flour shows up everywhere in our food. It’s the nutty coating for my mom’s green beans spiced with earthy ajwain , the key ingredient in her creamy, tangy, yogurt-based soup, kadhi , and the base for our favorite variety of laddoos , sweet, fudge-like balls flavored with ghee, sugar and nuts.
Across the many regional cuisines in India, chickpea flour is a common denominator: Gujaratis turn it into pudla , thin, savory crepes laced with turmeric and chilies. In Karnataka and Maharashtra, it can be found in jhunka , a spicy porridge. And in Andhra Pradesh, it is the thickener in Senagapindi Kura , an onion-heavy stew. For the country’s large vegetarian population, where eggs are often considered non-vegetarian, chickpea flour mixed with water serves as a convincing omelet replacement.
Indians — along with the Nepalese, Pakistanis, Italians, the French, and many others — have been cooking with chickpea flour for centuries. Americans, on the other hand, only seem to have woken up to the ingredient in the last decade or so. And they’ve woken up in a big way.
It’s hard to trace the exact origin of chickpea flour’s sudden popularity in the U.S. Anna Stockwell, the senior food editor of the publications Epicurious and Bon Appétit , said she first started seeing chickpea flour around 2009 on gluten-free blogs. Stockwell is gluten-free herself, and was excited to find a recipe for savory chickpea pancakes.
She didn’t know much about chickpea flour’s culinary heritage, but she was immediately excited. “Its binding power was magic,” she recalls. “All you have to do is combine chickpea flour and water, and suddenly you can make flatbread, or fritters or vegetable pancakes.” Still, Stockwell saw it as a niche ingredient — something only gluten-free consumers cared about. She wasn’t even allowed to call for it in Epicurious recipes.
Slowly but surely, that started to change. In 2010, one of the more popular recipes from Plenty , Yotam Ottolenghi’s bestselling cookbook, was a chickpea flour pancake, or socca , as it’s known in France, layered with tomatoes and onions. In 2015, food and fitness writer Camilla Saulsbury wrote the popular book The Chickpea Flour Cookbook . That was followed a year later by Chickpea Flour Does It All , by blogger Lindsey Love.
Lani Halliday, the founder of Brutus Bakeshop, a gluten-free Brooklyn bakery, says she noticed a huge uptick in the number of chickpea flour-based, gluten-free sweets available about a decade ago. For baked goods, chickpea flour worked uniquely well, “as it can hold air bubbles and hold moisture,” she says. Plus, “it was cheap, it was accessible, and it was versatile.”
Halliday launched her bakery in 2015. One of her bestselling items among both gluten-free and non-gluten-free customers was a chocolate cupcake made with chickpea flour.
Stockwell believes the mainstreaming of chickpea flour is directly linked to one company in particular — Banza. The company started producing its chickpea flour-based pasta in 2014, and by 2017, it was in 8,000-plus grocery stores and had raised $8 million in funding. The key to the company’s success? It didn’t exclusively market itself as a gluten-free product. Instead, it was branded as health food. And it was one of the first alternative pastas that had a smooth, al dente texture, just like the real thing.
“I had friends who had never heard of chickpea flour, but now they eat Banza,” Stockwell says. “It’s not because they are trying to eat gluten-free but because it’s a delicious and higher-protein pasta. It’s a substitute for empty carbs.”
This year, Epicurious was finally allowed to publish recipes with chickpea flour. Dennis Vaughn, the CEO of Bob’s Red Mill, says that in the past five years, chickpea flour has become a clear bestseller among the company’s sundry flour options.
“My grocery store doesn’t even carry red meat,” Stockwell says, “but they carry Bob’s Red Mill” chickpea flour.
In many ways, it has been weird to watch this ingredient that has always felt so quotidian to me become so ubiquitous so quickly in the U.S. This is certainly not the first Indian ingredient or dish this has happened to. Consider turmeric, chai, or khichdi , which have all been claimed by the wellness community and food bloggers as their own, often times without giving due credit to Indian cuisine. It baffles me that the vast majority of people I talk to are shocked to hear that chickpea flour has long been a common ingredient in my family’s cooking.
On the other hand, it was important to me when I was writing my new cookbook, Indian-ish , that people could find the ingredients for the dishes in their average grocery store. Because chickpea flour is now so common, I could include recipes like those addictive chickpea flour green beans, and the silky, soupy kadhi .
I’m not against chickpea flour entering the mainstream. But I wish that more of the stories I read about it, or the recipes I saw that featured it, didn’t frame it as a brand-new discovery, and completely ignore its heritage.
No one culture can “own” an ingredient — I’m literally writing this with a box of Banza chickpea pasta in my kitchen cabinet — but let’s not treat food like it exists in a vacuum. There’s context for that chickpea flour flatbread you’re making for dinner. Don’t take it for granted.
Priya Krishna is a food writer who contributes to The New York Times, Bon Appétit , and others. She also serves as one of the hosts of Bon Appétit’s video series, From the Test Kitchen . She is the author of the cookbook Indian-ish: Recipes And Antics From A Modern American Family . Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @ PKgourmet © 2019 WVAS

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This is the ultimate family guide to Muscat

Home » Great Reads » This is the ultimate family guide to Muscat This is the ultimate family guide to Muscat Posted on 10.05.19 by jane When it comes to nearby travel destinations, Oman’s capital Muscat is a popular one. Here’s a little primer to help with your trip planning.
While the UAE is home to grand attractions and a host of luxury hotels, sometimes it’s good to get away and experience something new. Thankfully, we don’t have to travel far to see natural wonders, experience a different culture or embark on exciting new adventures .
Whether you’re looking to trek through the mountains, feast on indigenous food or settle into a relaxing seaside retreat, the Omani capital is a great place to explore. Getting there
Driving to Oman is an affordable, relatively quick means of getting there, making it the perfect destination for a family road trip. It’s about a five-hour drive from Dubai to Muscat and aside from a full tank of petrol, you’ll need proof of ownership of the vehicle – or proof that you have permission to drive the vehicle in case it’s a rental – and insurance that covers the vehicle in both the UAE and Oman. If your UAE insurance does not extend to Oman, you can purchase a policy at the border.
If you prefer to fly, airlines do offer direct flights from to Muscat, including Oman Air, Fly Dubai and Emirates. You can even catch the bus – the journey should take six hours. Stay and play Millennium Resort Mussanah
Finding the right accommodation is the key to any great trip and self-contained properties like Millennium Resort Mussanah are ideal for families. Like most resorts, this property features award-winning restaurants, a swanky health and fitness club and Zayna Spa, all about 45 minutes’ drive from Muscat International Airport.
However, what makes it one of our favs is its big entertainment factor. There are tennis courts, an 18-hole mini-golf course, a dedicated family pool, zipline and Aqua Fun, a floating water park. Grown-ups can unwind with watersports, sailing or snorkelling along the resort’s private 54-berth marina. You can drop the youngest members of the family off at Kids’ Club too.
Room options including two-bedroom duplexes with fully stocked kitchens, so everyone can retreat to their own space to rejuvenate. Visit: www.millenniumhotels.com Cultural excursions Mutrah Souq
Whether you’re doing a quick pop over or staying a little longer, you’ve got to get out and experience Muscat. Oman is known for being a welcoming and family-friendly place and its capital is no different. Walkabout, interact with the Omani people and learn more about the country’s rich history by visiting cultural landmarks.
Al Alam Palace in Old Muscat is the ceremonial palace of Sultan Qaboos of Oman. As the official residence of the Sultan, this is where distinguished guests who are visiting the country are received. If the Omani flag at the main entrance of the palace is raised, Sultan Qaboos is home.
The palace is the centrepiece of a long pedestrian boulevard lined with manicured gardens and surrounding government buildings made from polished white marble. The front of the building is accented by four eye-catching gold and blue columns, adorned with ornate arches, tiling and carvings.
Although visitors are only allowed to view the palace from outside the gates, it’s well worth a visit to admire this beacon of modern Islamic architecture.
Opposite the Mutrah Corniche, Mutrah Souq has the old world charm of the traditional Arab market with breathtaking views of the ocean. The souq is well shaded beneath timber roofing and is set up along cobblestone pathways that splinter and give way to nooks and crannies filled with traditional Omani and Indian artefacts.
You can buy anything, from textiles to jewellery and fragrances, but be prepared to bargain. Cards are accepted in most shops, but cash gives you better leverage. Saturday-Thursday, 8am-1.30pm and 4pm-10pm, Friday 24 hours. (times may vary during Ramadan). Visit: omantourism.gov.om
Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque is a beautiful landmark with a stunning interior, exterior and surrounding gardens. It’s a great excursion for older children who may be eager to learn more about local religion and culture. Free. Sultan Qaboos Street. Saturday-Thursday 8.30am-11am (times may vary during Ramadan).
Want to explore the great outdoors? Muscat has some beautiful beaches, particularly Al Qurum Beach , where you can take a picnic, walk along the coast and let the kids play in the sand. You can also take a boat tour to go dolphin watching, snorkelling or swimming. Visit: viator.com
Bait Al Zubair offers a glimpse into traditional Omani life. The museum recreates houses with displays of clothing, frankincense and more, while a shop sells modern local trinkets. 2RO for adults, 1RO for children aged 10-15. Al Bahri Road. Saturday-Thursday, 9.30am-6pm (opening hours may differ during Ramadan). Visit: baitalzubair.com Book it Kempinski Hotel Muscat
Lodging can make or break your trip, so we’ve pulled together this list of places waiting to host you.
Find the Kempinski Hotel Muscat in the coastline community of Al Mouj, known as ‘the new heart of Muscat’. This five-star hotel features ten restaurants and bars, a kids’ club, tennis court, private bowling and entertainment centre, gym, spa and two pools, with one just for children. Plus, you can enjoy a variety of outdoor and watersport activities. Visit: www.kempinski.com
Downtown, near the central business district and prime shopping, the Radisson Blu Hotel, Muscat has a city vibe. This four-star hotel’s four restaurants and two bars offer a variety of cuisine, including Italian fine dining and an Irish pub. While here, you can sweat it out in the health club or take a dip in the outdoor, temperature-controlled pool. Visit: radissonblu.com/hotel-muscat
Positioned between the ocean and the Al Hajar Mountains, the opulent Al Bustan Palace offers an alluring blend of old and new. Set within a former palace , the resort features newly renovated guest rooms and suites with sea or garden views, five dining venues, a spa, private beach and four pools, including one dedicated to children. Visit: www.ritzcarlton.com Before you go
Oman has recently made changes to its visa process and here’s what you need to know to get across the border hassle-free.
• Two 4x6cm photographs• A copy of your passport, which must be valid at least six months• A copy of your visa and/or a letter from your sponsoring organisation (or spouse) granting permission for travel
Once the visit visa is granted, it will be valid for six months from the date it was issued. The visa is valid for staying in the Sultanate for three months from the date of entry.
*Please note timings and offerings may change during the Holy Month of Ramadan. Check directly with the venues listed for more information.
Related Posted in Great Reads , Travel | Tagged accommodation , AIRLINES , Al Alam Palace , Al Bustan Palace , al qurum beach , art gallery muscat , Bait Al Zubair , beaches in oman , budget , Budget travel Dubai , bus to Oman , capital of oman , cheap vacations from Dubai , driving to muscat from uae , driving to Oman , dubai long weekends , expat , family activities , family events , family guide to oman , family holidays Muscat , family hotel muscat , flights to Oman , gcc resident , getaways , getting there , getting to Oman , holidays , hotel , hotel deals in Muscat , how to get to Muscat , Kempinski Hotel Muscat , Millennium Resort Mussanah , Muscat , Muscat International Airport. , museum in muscat , Mutrah Souq , new bus service , oman , oman e-visa , oman to dubai , oman visa , oman visa rules , places to stay , places to stay Oman , Qurum Beach , Radisson Blu Hotel , radisson blu hotel muscat , RTA , self service apartments Oman , Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque , Sultanate of Oman , Things to Do , travel , visa for Oman , where can I fly to for a long weekend vacation from dubai , where can I go on holiday from dubai , zipline oman | Comments Off on This is the ultimate family guide to Muscat Discover more…

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How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation? – NPR

How Did Chickpea Flour, A Staple Of Indian Cuisine, Become A Health Food Sensation? – NPR May 12, 2019

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