Taste of Kashmir - Wazwan Style!

Wazwan is a royal multi-course aalishaan dawat traditionally prepared for special occasions. It showcases the deep-rooted culture of Kashmir thereby giving you a true taste of this ‘Heaven on Earth’!

By Sanjeev Kapoor
New Update
Royal Kashmiri Wazwan

Thinking of Kashmir, the first thing that comes to our mind is the shikaras sailing through the calm waters of Dal Lake with a scenic backdrop of mesmerizing snow clad mountains. Along with such bewitching scenic beauty, this ‘Heaven on Earth’ also offers an impressive rich cuisine. 

One such unmissable multi-course aalishaan dawat that you can witness in Kashmir is the Wazwan! Comprising of 36 distinctive dishes like Rista, Rogan josh, Kebabs, gushtaba, Methi maaz, and a lot more, Wazwan is prepared meticulously by traditional master chefs called the Wazas, and is served in a unique copper plate called Traem. Every dish unfolds like a story tale full of tradition, culture, and amazing tastes that'll have you coming back for more, of course only if your tummy isn’t already full because of the variety of dishes.

Now you must remember, Wazwan isn’t just an everyday meal, rather it is a ceremonial spread made at special occasions like weddings. Serving Wazwan is considered a mark of hospitality of Kashmiris as it truly represents the beautiful amalgamation of tradition and culture. Which is why it’s considered so much more than just a meal. 


Out of all the greatest Indian feasts, this surreal meat-laden banquet surely takes the trophy home. So, here are some prominent Kashmiri Wazwan dishes to get you the taste of Kashmir:


Tabak maaz

The first recipe on this list is a quintessential meat delicacy often served as a starting dish at the Wazwan - Tabak maaz. To make it, the juicy lamb ribs are first set to marinate in spices and yoghurt overnight, then these slathered ribs are cooked and finally deep-fried in ghee. Then you have the delicious Tabak maaz, which is perfectly crispy on the outside yet incredibly soft on the inside.


Rogan Josh

Then comes the signature dish of Kashmir - Rogan Josh! This authentic Indian lamb curry with a heady combination of intense exotic spices, is really palate pleasing. Prepared using the slow-cooking method, this deep-red juicy mutton curry tastes brilliant when served along with any kind of roti, parantha or rice. The secret behind its fiery red colour is ‘mawal’ or natural reddish food coloring obtained through cockscomb flowers.


Aab Gosht 

Next on the list is yet another top notch Kashmiri curry - Aab Gosht which is made by cooking mutton with chana dal, green chillies, spices and coconut milk. With each bite of this succulent meat, you discover hints of cardamom, slight sweetness of milk and the kick of spices like pepper and cloves. Aab Gosht is truly a well-balanced curry making it perfect for any special occasion.



Finally on the list is Goshtaba, a recipe served as the final dish at the extensive Wazwan. To make Goshtaba, mutton is pounded smooth by hand into mutton mince (keema) and then spiced and rounded into incredibly soft and tender meat balls. These balls are then cooked in a flavourful velvety yogurt gravy called yakhni. Goshtaba sadly denotes the end of the meal, but definitely fills our hearts with immense pleasure.


Each of these above listed recipes of such Kashmiri Thali is a delight for any food lover especially due to their heavenly aroma of spices and mouth watering textures. Right from pounding the meat to converting it into such intricate recipes, and then finally to serving it in such particular methods, Wazas cast their magic. They not just ensure that the taste is perfect and there is least amount of wastage but also make it a point to serve everything in such a way that it can be easily digested. So, I strongly believe one must enjoy the essence of Kashmir in Wazwan style at least once in a lifetime.