Kolhapur is a very beautiful and historic city in western Maharashtra. The city has its own unique character. Old-fashioned and wall-shaped buildings, palaces, museums and so many green trees on the side of the road, makes this city popular and tourist attraction.
Kolhapuri Saaj, Thhushi, Vajratikand other traditional ornaments are famous in Kolhapur. Kolhapuri chapals are very famous and widely used by people all over the country. In addition, beautiful collection of Paithani sari (without Yewala), Maheshwari, Gadwal, etc. is also liked and appreciated everywhere. Kolhapuri food culture is special and different.
The list of special items here is so large that it is simply impossible to eat and taste all of these dishes in one visit. The list goes like, Kolhapuri Misal, Tambda-Pandhara Rassa, Suka Mutton, Mutton Pulao, Mutton Pickle, Bakarwadi, various types of ice-cream, Davangiri Dosa, Chiwda, yummy lassi, Khandoli and many more.
If you are a non-vegetarian and tired of eating all regular types of eggs, fish, meat and chicken dishes, then you have got a variety of different dishes here. You will find a huge number of mutton lovers in Kolhapur. The names of some of the famous mutton dishes are quite weird and uncommon like Rakti Mundi, Mutton Kharda, Mutton Pickle. Over this never-ending list, Tambada Rassa (Red gravy) and Pandhara Rassa (White gravy) has made their place almost in everyone’s heart. People from almost all over the Maharashtra prefer to have these colorful dishes in their meal and loves to eat it. The die heart fans of this special dishes are now spreading almost all over the country.
Tambada rassa is very spicy and gets its red color because of the tomatoes and red chili used in it and hence, called as tambada rassa (red gravy/ soup). It takes more preparation time than pandhara rassa. It is basically made from tomatoes, mutton and spices. Tambada rassa requires a special masala and it is made using sesame seeds, poppy seeds, cloves, cinnamon, black pepper, cumin seeds, coconut and cardamom. This whole mixture with some oil is grinded to make a fine paste. Cook the mutton with coriander, turmeric, garlic and ginger. Then cook onion and tomatoes in oil until both are soft and mushy. Then first goes the prepared masala. After 2-3 minutes, once it starts to leave some oil then goes the pre-cooked mutton and then add some water. The whole mixture is set to cook until it is boiled nicely.
Pandhara rassa is supposed to be a non-spicy dish, unlike tambada rassa. It is made from mutton, coconut, sesame seeds, cashew nuts, garlic and ginger. First mutton is cooked nicely with ginger, garlic, salt and water and then to add some flavor to it like black pepper powder. Coconut is grinded to form a fine paste. This coconut paste and milk and is then added to the mutton mixture. Jeera Tadka is given to this whole mixture and it is cooked until it boils. Pandhara rassa is as thick as a soup and can be eaten as a starter. Because of coconut milk, it looks white and hence it got the name as Pandhara rassa (white gravy/ soup).
Before the main food starts, Pandhara rassa and Tambada rassa is a big choice as a starter. Kolhapuri Chicken Thali is a famous and tasty dish and is served along with Pandhara and Tambada rassa not only in Kolhapur but almost in entire Maharashtra. In fact, in many places over the country, demand for this colorful dish has started growing and is being appreciated for its taste and deliciousness.
Featured Photo by pelican