The extravagance of Mughlai delicacies in the course of Shah Jahan’s reign became toned down through his son Aurangzeb.

The maximum spiritual and frugal of all of the Mughal emperors, Aurangzeb fancied vegetarian dishes just like the aforementioned panchmel dal greater than the roast meat dishes that observed favour together along with his uncles and brothers.

According to Rukat-e-Alamgiri (a ee-e book with letters from Aurangzeb to his son)


an intricate biryani made with rice, basil, Bengal gram, dried apricot, almond and curd — additionally held an area of delight at the eating desk of Aurangzeb.

It became additionally in the course of Aurangzeb’s reign the intermingling of Mughal and Deccan culinary traditions received momentum (the kitchen moved with the emperor while he went on wars). During this time, Agra and Delhi began out to lose their preeminence as hubs of Mughal subculture, with the point of interest transferring to towns like Hyderabad and Lucknow.


A deliciously thick paste of meat, wheat, spices and ghee, haleem‘s first recorded look in India became withinside the sixteenth century in keeping with the ancient textual content Ain-i-Akbari.

Written through Abul Fazl, the ee-e book additionally mentions that there has been a Minister of Kitchen in the course of the reign of Akbar.

While the dish’s actual origins are hard to pinpoint, haleem is thought to have made its gastronomical adventure to the Deccan in the course of the Mughal era.

In the years to come, the secrets and techniques of the imperial kitchens regularly made their manner throughout the country — now no longer simply to the royal kitchens of princely states however additionally to the gullies and bazaars of many Indian towns.

And over the centuries, they made their manner to fancy restaurants, old-faculty retailers and domestic shipping offerings in bustling cosmopolitan towns.

Mughlai paratha and Reshmi Tikka

So the following time you dial for Mughlai paratha and Reshmi Tikka, spend a minute wondering about (and perhaps, thanking) all the ones food-loving emperors, their stylish other halves and their hardworking khansamas!

Interestingly, the story of Mughal culinary subculture is incomplete with out a point out of the dynasty’s fondness for mangoes!

A sole exception to this rule, Babur had little time for mangoes. However, such became Humayun’s love for the fruit that he took care to make certain an excellent deliver of mangoes (thru a well-mounted courier system) at the same time as at the run from India to Kabul.

Shah Jahan’s fondness for mangoes

Akbar constructed the extensive Lakhi Bagh close to Darbhanga, developing over 100 thousand mango trees. This became one of the earliest examples of the grafting of mangoes, consisting of the Totapuri, the Rataul and the high priced Kesar.

Shah Jahan’s fondness for mangoes became so deep that he had his personal son, Aurangzeb, punished and positioned below residence arrest due to the fact the latter stored all of the mangoes withinside the palace for himself!

In fact, Jehangir and Shah Jahan even presented their khansamas for his or her precise creations like Aam Panna, Aam ka Lauz and Aam Ka Meetha Pulao (a sensitive mango dessert offered in the course of the summer time season in Shahjahanabad). It became additionally mangoes that Aurangzeb despatched to Shah Abbas of Persia to help him in his combat for the throne!

Today, numerous of the town’s fine-eating eating places serve an array of Mughlai delicacies – creamy, richly flavoured curries introduced to lifestyles with an abundance of spices, dried end result and roasted nuts.

The emperor sympathised with the Hindus below his rule and absolutely refrained from the intake of beef, which changed into normally changed via way of means of the beef of goat, chicken and venison.

Sherbet: emperor Humayun’s favored drink

But it changed into throughout emperor Akbar’s technology that Mughal delicacies reached new heights. Employing over four hundred chefs, Akbar’s feasts could greater regularly than now no longer span a hundred exclusive dishes. Many of his chefs had been from what’s now referred to as Rajasthan, and that they fused their wealthy fashion of cooking with Persian flavours, developing an altogether exclusive sort of delicacies. It changed into then that one of the maximum scrumptious and difficult food changed into created withinside the Mughal kitchens: Murgh Musallam, a masala-covered entire chicken, full of a highly spiced aggregate of minced meat and cooked over low heat.

Masala-covered Murgh Musallam

When Shah Jahan got here into rule, the discovery of Mughlai meals changed into at its peak – assume lamb kebabs marinated in Indian spices, rice pilaf ramped up a notch into the newly evolved biryani, and silver and gold fit to be eaten foils used to beautify the advent of meals.

Mughlai Biryani: the following herbal step from rice pilaf

After the decline of the Mughal Empire, Agra commenced to lose its essence because the hub of Mughal culture. Much of the point of interest shifted to towns like Hyderabad and Lucknow. However, even today, some of eating places in Agra hold to serve dishes rustled up the use of the identical individual spices, keeping the conventional contact traditional of the Mughal technology.

Mughal meals changed into at the start invented via way of means of fusing present Persian and Indian cuisines. The Mughal Empire attained lots of its attributes from the Persians, along with language, that is why numerous Mughlai dishes have an average Persian ring to them.

Although emperor Babur didn’t stay lengthy sufficient to specific his choice for the sort of meals he devoured, he did set a fashion via way of means of hiring Hindu chefs to put together Persian-fashion dishes with Indian ingredients. It changed into throughout the reign of his successor, emperor Humayun, that dried end result and nuts had been included into recipes for sweets, sauces and rice. Humayun cherished sherbet (a cold, candy drink), so liquids have become flavoured with the essence of end result.


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