What would a small, sleepy temple town in South India offer in terms of culinary treats? A common response would be the same old monotonous idli, dosa, wada and rice. Stereotyping 101. And Madurai gives a perfect answer by breaking this stereotypes. A food lovers paradise, here’s a list of all interesting things to eat and where to find them in Madurai.
What: Fluffy Idlis with Ensemble of Chutney
Where: Murugan Idli Shop
Why: The best idlis we have had till date, their idlis are so soft and so delicious, you just can’t have one. And with the varieties of chutney they provide with it, these fluffy soft idlis are one hard thing to resist.
How Much: INR 30/- per plate of Idli (2 pieces)
What: Madurai Biryani
Where: Panamarathu Biryani Kadai/Street Shops in Goripalayam
Why: If you are a biryani lover, then your day will begin on a great note since the Madurai Biryani is available in the morning from 8 AM to 11 AM in the streets and restaurants of Madurai. Greasy and flavorful, this biryani is different in taste and texture from all others we have tried thus far, and definitely leaves a lasting impact.
How Much: INR 150/- to 200/- per plate
What: Madurai Special Thali
Where: Heritage Madurai Resort/ Patti Kadai
Why: Short on time but want to experience everything? Madurai Special Thali is what you would look forward to. An amazing 3-course meal spread that will make you eat to your heart’s content, and a little bit above it. The dish will mesmerize your senses, totally.
How Much: INR 400/- to 600/- per thali
What: Bun Parotta
Where: Street Shops at Aavin Junction, KK Nagar
Why: Fluffy, soft, sweet and delicious. Perfect evening snack, made with eggs, milk, butter, sugar and bananas, kneading all into a dough and beating them for hours makes them extremely soft and fluffy. Again, makes you keep coming for more.
How Much: INR 50/- to 100/- per plate (4-6 pieces)
What: Keerai Vadai
Where: All road side shops in evening
Why: A popular tea time snack prepared from the green leafy vegetables in lentil batter and deep fried. Crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside, this evening snack is very healthy due to presence of green leaves and helps keep cough at bay.
How Much: INR 50/- per plate (3-6 pieces)
What: Kari Dosa
Where: Konar Mess
Why: A signature Madurai dish, it is something you just cannot miss if you are in Madurai or even passing through the city. A three layered dosa whose base layer is thick plain dosa, middle layer is omelette and top layer is minced meat. Extremely delicious, to be savoured with curry or sambar.
How Much: INR 150/- per piece
What: Kola Urundai
Where: Kumar Mess
Why: Another culinary highlight of Madurai, minced mutton balls prepared with lots of spices, making them crunchy on outside and melting from within. Savoured dry or in a curry, they will have a burst of flavors in your pallets and will keep on lingering long after you have eaten.
How Much: INR 150/- to 200/- per plate (6 pieces)
Where: Famous Jigarthanda Shop
Why: When you want a coolant for your body after all the heavy influx of meat and spices, a glass of Jigarthanda definitely helps in ceasing the fire in the belly. Chilled milk with a rabdi like consistency, with crushed Gondh (Tree Gum) and topped with a scoop of Ice cream. In literal sense it is Jigarthanda, one that cools your gut.
How Much: INR 60/- for full glass
What: Madurai Famous Halwa
Where: Prem Vilas Halwa Shop/Murugan Idli Shop
Why: It is soft, it is smooth, it is full of ghee and it tastes yum. There isn’t a better way to end your gastro journey. You need to try it to understand its rich taste. Hands down, Highly Recommended!
How Much: INR 350/- to 400/- per kg
There you have it then, a place in South India, known for its temple, yet offering culinary treats that pleases everyone who visits. Do try these places when you visit next and let us know which one is your favorite.