Tamil Nadu, the land of the Tamils, was dominated by the Dravidian culture for 2500 years. The cuisine is distinctly different from that of the north, and is based primarily on rice rather than wheat and an abundant use of coconut. With a largely vegetarian population like much of India, Tamil Nadu has a particularly elaborate vegetarian cuisine. The classic foods of Tamil Nadu center around rice and lentils. Famous throughout India, and, increasingly, in the rest of the world, idli and dosa are both made from a fermented batter of ground rice and lentils. For idli, the batter is steamed into small puffy disks while dosa batter is spread thinly on a griddle and cooked into a crispy pancake. Both dishes are traditionally eaten with coconut chutney and sambar, a thick soup of lentils, tamarind and vegetables.
A Tamil meal is traditionally served on a banana leaf, with each dish placed in a particular spot on the leaf and designed to be eaten in a certain order, with specific combinations of the dishes mixed together with the fingers. Before eating, a small portion of each food is set in the upper corner as an offering to God. Meals are taken seated on the floor and, traditionally, the host continuously replenishes any food that is finished until the diner folds his or her leaf in half. We will have many opportunities to explore this unique style of eating.
Our 2017 Ayurveda and Yoga Retreat will be traversing the heart of South India. Starting in Kovalam, Kerala and ending in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, this retreat is structured to immerse you in Ayurvedic study and practice, daily yoga asana routines and an inner exploration of Hindu (Vedic) philosophy. Jasmine Grace, Ayurvedic practitioner and yoga teacher, will be leading this 12-day journey. There are a few spots left on this journey and if you are looking to begin 2018 with a clear mind and body then this is the journey for you. Visit this link to learn more about this Ayurveda and Yoga Retreat.