In India, there are only very few states that speak hindi alone. People from Bihar speak Bihari, Maharasthra speak Marathi, UP has urdu as well, Haryana – Punjab has Punjabi and the South too has its own languages.
Yet, with Hindi you can manage almost anywhere in India.
Like that, when it comes to food – with the all purpose recipe for dal, you can manage almost anywhere in India. Even in the North East states.
I was quite surprised when I saw this Potato, peas & cauliflower based dal as part of a Nagaland platter online. The rest of the items were totally non-veg, yet this phool-gobi and aloo dal left an impression in my mind.
So, dal is not uncommon, even in North East.
Somehow landed on a tomato chutney recipe from Nagaland. And looking at the simplicity of the recipe (it’s just roughly crushing everything with your hands and then boiling), it looked authentic.
Authentic is a heavy word to use here. What people of an area cook and eat on a day-to-day basis may not be original, authentic recipes of the state. Yet it doesn’t mean that everyday recipes are not part of that state.
The spread I have here is chosen out of the few vegetarian on-line options I had for this state. And as far as authenticity is concerned, I have no idea. I can tell you for sure that in Nagaland, this will not be a meal on its own. It would be paired with at least a couple of meat based dishes!