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Must-Try Kerala Food Items in Houseboats

In the serene backwaters of Kerala, amidst the tranquil allure of nature, lies an unparalleled culinary adventure waiting to be savored. Kerala, often dubbed “God’s Own Country,” boasts not only breathtaking landscapes but also a rich tapestry of flavors that tantalize the taste buds and leave an indelible mark on the palate.
One of the best ways to experience the essence of Kerala’s food culture is by sampling the delectable dishes served on traditional houseboats. In this article, we’ll take you on a gastronomic journey through some must-try Kerala food items that you simply cannot miss while cruising on a houseboat.

Food Items in Houseboats

Exploring the Essence of Kerala Cuisine

Indulging in Karimeen Pollichathu

Kickstart your culinary adventure with a quintessential Kerala delicacy – Karimeen Pollichathu. No exploration of Kerala’s culinary landscape would be complete without karimeen pollichathu, a mouthwatering delicacy that showcases the region’s abundant seafood. This dish features pearl spot fish marinated in a blend of spices, wrapped in banana leaves, and grilled to perfection. The result? Tender, flavorful fish infused with the subtle aroma of curry leaves and coconut.

The Ubiquitous Appam and Stew

Let’s embark on our culinary journey with the quintessential appam and stew. Appam, a lacy, crisp-edged pancake made from fermented rice batter and coconut milk, is the perfect accompaniment to a hearty stew. The stew, typically prepared with chicken or vegetables, is simmered in coconut milk infused with aromatic spices, creating a symphony of flavors that is both comforting and soul-satisfying.

Savoring the Spiciness of Kerala Fish Curry

Prepare your taste buds for a burst of flavor with Kerala fish curry, a dish that epitomizes the state’s love affair with spices. Made with freshly caught fish simmered in a tangy gravy infused with coconut milk, tamarind, and a medley of spices, this dish is a symphony of flavors that dances on the palate. Pair it with steamed rice for a truly authentic Kerala dining experience.

Delighting in Puttu and Kadala Curry

For a taste of traditional Kerala breakfast fare, look no further than puttu and kadala curry. Puttu, cylindrical steamed rice cakes, are paired with a spicy chickpea curry known as kadala curry. The combination of soft, fluffy puttu and robust, flavorful curry is a match made in culinary heaven.

Tempting the Taste Buds with Sadya

Indulge in the grandeur of Kerala’s culinary tradition with sadya, a lavish feast served on banana leaves during special occasions and festivals. This elaborate spread features an array of vegetarian dishes, including avial, thoran, olan, and sambar, along with accompaniments like papadum, pickle, and banana chips. Each dish is meticulously prepared with fresh ingredients and traditional spices, ensuring a gastronomic experience like no other.

Kerala Prawn Curry

For seafood lovers, Kerala Prawn Curry is a must-try delicacy. Succulent prawns cooked in a fragrant coconut-based gravy, infused with spices and curry leaves, create a dish that is bursting with flavors. Savor it with some appam or steamed rice for a memorable culinary experience.

Nadan Kozhi Varuthathu (Kerala Chicken Fry)

For those craving something meaty, Nadan Kozhi Varuthathu is the perfect choice. This traditional Kerala chicken fry is marinated in a blend of spices and shallow-fried until golden and crispy. Each bite is packed with bold flavors, making it a favorite among food enthusiasts.

Kerala Beef Fry

Experience the bold and fiery flavors of Kerala with Kerala Beef Fry. Tender pieces of beef are marinated in a spicy masala mix and sautéed until they are perfectly cooked and caramelized. It’s a dish that perfectly captures the essence of Kerala’s vibrant culinary landscape.


Vegetarians rejoice! Avial is a classic Kerala dish that is as delicious as it is nutritious. A medley of mixed vegetables cooked in a coconut and yogurt-based gravy, flavored with curry leaves and coconut oil, Avial is a celebration of flavors and textures that will leave you wanting more.

Kerala Banana Chips

No trip to Kerala is complete without munching on some crispy and flavorful Kerala Banana Chips. Made from thinly sliced raw bananas that are deep-fried until golden and crispy, these chips are a popular snack enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. Addictively crunchy and bursting with natural sweetness, they make the perfect snack to munch on while enjoying the scenic views from your houseboat.


Finish off your culinary journey with a sweet note by indulging in Payasam, a traditional Kerala dessert. Made with vermicelli, rice, or lentils cooked in milk and sweetened with jaggery or sugar, Payasam is a creamy and luscious dessert that is sure to satisfy your sweet cravings.


In conclusion, dining on Kerala houseboats offers a unique opportunity to indulge in the region’s culinary treasures while immersing yourself in its natural beauty. From the fragrant spices of appam and stew to the succulent karimeen pollichathu and fiery Kerala fish curry, every dish tells a story of tradition, flavor, and passion. So, why wait? Embark on your own culinary odyssey and discover the magic of Kerala’s houseboat dining experience.

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