What are some of the common or traditional dishes found in Paro, Bhutan?

Paro is a small town in western Bhutan that is known for its stunning natural landscapes and historic landmarks. But for food lovers, Paro is a treasure trove of delicious dishes that reflect the region’s unique cuisine and cultural heritage.

Here are some typical foods you can find in Paro:

1. Ema Datshi (chilli cheese): This is the national dish of Bhutan, and it consists of cheese cubes cooked with spicy chillies, onions, and tomatoes. It’s usually served with red rice or buckwheat noodles on the side.

Recipe:

Ingredients:
– 200g of cottage cheese or any soft cheese
– 3-4 green chillies, sliced
– 1 onion, chopped
– 1 red tomato, chopped
– 1 tbsp butter or oil
– Salt to taste

Instructions:
1. Heat the butter or oil in a pan and sauté the onion until it turns transparent.
2. Add the sliced green chillies and sauté for 1-2 minutes.
3. Add the chopped tomatoes and cook until they turn soft.
4. Add the cheese cubes and stir gently until the cheese melts.
5. Add salt to taste, and serve hot.

Where to eat: You can find Ema Datshi at almost every restaurant in Paro, but some of the best places to try it are Sonam Trophel Restaurant, The Village Lodge, and Kichu Resort.

2. Jasha Maroo (spicy chicken): This is another popular Bhutanese dish that features tender pieces of chicken cooked with ginger, garlic, onions, and chillies. It’s perfect for those who prefer their food spicy and flavourful.

Recipe:

Ingredients:
– 500g chicken, cut into small pieces
– 1 onion, chopped
– 1 tbsp ginger paste
– 1 tbsp garlic paste
– 3-4 green chillies, sliced
– 1 tbsp vegetable oil
– Salt to taste

Instructions:
1. Heat the oil in a pan and sauté the onion until it turns golden brown.
2. Add the ginger and garlic paste, and stir for 1-2 minutes.
3. Add the chicken and cook on medium heat until it’s half-cooked.
4. Add the sliced green chillies and salt to taste, and cook until the chicken is fully cooked.
5. Serve hot with rice or naan bread.

Where to eat: You can find Jasha Maroo at most local eateries in Paro, but some of the best places to try it are Zombala Restaurant, Sonam Trophel Restaurant, and Dechen Hill Resort.

3. Phaksha Paa (pork with red chillies): This is a spicy pork dish that’s a favourite among Bhutanese locals. The tender pieces of pork are cooked with red chillies, garlic, onions, and spices, and it’s served with steamed rice.

Recipe:

Ingredients:
– 500g pork, cut into small pieces
– 10-12 dried red chillies, soaked in water
– 1 onion, chopped
– 1 tbsp garlic paste
– 1 tbsp vegetable oil
– Salt to taste

Instructions:
1. Heat the oil in a wok and sauté the onion until it turns golden brown.
2. Add the garlic paste and stir for 1-2 minutes.
3. Add the pork pieces and cook on medium heat until they turn brown.
4. Add the soaked red chillies and salt to taste, and cook until the pork is fully cooked.
5. Serve hot with steamed rice.

Where to eat: You can find Phaksha Paa at most local eateries in Paro, but some of the best places to try it are Taktsang Cafeteria, Kichu Resort, and The Village Lodge.

Besides these dishes, there are many other regional foods that you can try in Paro, including Momos (dumplings), Thukpa (noodle soup), and Shamu Datshi (mushroom cheese). So, if you’re planning a trip to Paro, make sure to sample some of these delicious local treats and experience the flavours of Bhutanese cuisine.

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