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The Chowk


Bhuttan: A Delicacy of the Newars

If you ever visit the Kathmandu valley in Nepal, you will most definitely be welcomed with Newari cuisine. Newari cuisine belongs to the indigenous Newa people, often known as Newars, of the Kathmandu valley and they have refined the thousands of years old recipes into some absolutely exquisite flavours. Food is a huge part of the Newari culture. As a result, the locals and visitors alike are eager to attend any Newari revelries since outstanding entertainment and catering are guaranteed. Known for their lavish feasting, Newars have a plethora of dishes, each with its own social and religious significance. One such Newari dish is bhuttan.

Bhuttan translates to “fried” in the Nepali language. So, bhuttan is a dish prepared by frying tripe and other digestive parts with ingredients like spices, shallots, onions, garlic, and tomatoes. The tripe and digestive parts of any animal can be used to prepare bhuttan, including chicken, duck, water buffalo, goat, etc., but the most popular variant is the water buffalo bhuttan which is simply referred to as bhuttan in Nepal. If offals of any other animal are used to make bhuttan, it must be mentioned in the name. For example, if offals of a goat are used then it is called goat bhuttan or “Khasi ko bhuttan” in Nepali. Goat bhuttan is a close second to water buffalo bhuttan in terms of popularity.

Bhuttan is commonly served as a part of Samay baji, a set of Newari foods served during auspicious occasions, but it can also be enjoyed on its own as an appetizer typically accompanied by soft drinks or alcohol (often chhyang or aila). The delicacy’s peak presence in Nepalese homes is during Dashain, a 15-day fall festival honouring goddess Durga. Nowadays, the dish has become a staple on restaurant menus and is one of the most popular snacks in Nepal.

The key ingredient to bhuttan is offals, and whilst the dish itself is rather simple to cook, it’s crucial to prepare the offals properly. The internal organs of the animal such as the tripe, various sections of the digestive system, liver, and kidney are taken apart and washed thoroughly. They must be thoroughly cleaned before the boil otherwise the odour will linger while eating. After boiling the offals for about 10 minutes on low flame, they are chopped into small pieces and tossed into a pan with heated mustard oil.

Then salt and turmeric powder are added and the medley is left to fry for a while. Next, the ginger-garlic paste is added, and the mix is allowed to cook for 5 more minutes with occasional stirring. Finally, onions, chilli powder, cumin, and coriander powder, along with garam masala powder are added and fried until the entrails are crispy. Then it is taken off the flames and served hot as it is or with a side of beaten or puffed rice. Finely chopped chilis can be added as a garnish.

If you want to taste this delicacy then come and stop by at The Chowk. You can experience a little piece of Newari cuisine with our tasty Goat bhuttan, the perfect side dish for your favourite drink.

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