Mauritius has a lot to offer in terms of cultural diversity. People from different cultural background, religion and ethnicity make up the Mauritian rainbow. Each contribute in what makes up the culture of the tropical paradise.
Gastronomically speaking, there is a large palette of dishes in Mauritius. European, Indian, Chinese, and African succulent dishes. The advantage with Mauritius, is that you don’t have to travel the world to taste all the types of cuisine.
Travelers present to you Mauritius’ Top Street foods.
The Briyani is without contest the most asked street food in Mauritius. Mauritian Briyani is a slightly modified recipe from that of India, although it has been imported from there. It is made by laying a layer of rice onto a layer of spices and meat mix and then pressure cooking it.
The biryani can be made from beef, chicken, deer, and other red meat too. It is a rather difficult dish to cook. It requires a very meticulous preparation and good timing. It is also important to have a good measure of all the ingredients which are not proportional to the number of people.
In Mauritius, cooking biryani is an art reserved for the most skilled ones, called the “bandaris”. The bandaris are often students of other bandaris who have their own secret recipes.
Briyani is served on special occasions and more often during Muslim weddings. The best commercial biryanis are without contest sold in Port-Louis, more specifically in Desforges Street. A Street reputed for the abundance of street food.
You can find it even late at night.
Price: About Rs 200 per plate depending on the meat. (Beef is usually more expensive)
· Fried Noodle
Fried noodles is a typical Chinese dish, noodles being invented by the Chinese. Fried noodles is a typical street food. The noodles are locally manufactured from water, oil and flour.
They are fried in oyster sauce, chicken/meat or fish and egg, carrots, cabbage, mung beans, and leafy greens.
The mixture is a real delicacy. Fresh noodles can be easily obtained everywhere.
It’s worth to try at least once in a lifetime.
Price: Not more than Rs 150 per plate.
· Fried Rice
Fried Rice contains the same ingredients as Fried noodles on the exception that fried rice is made with rice and not noodles.
The name itself says it all. It may be better to take fried rice for dinner than fried noodles. The reasons being that fried noodles is more filling than fried rice.
Fried rice may be the perfect plate for a journey at the beach and is costs less than fried noodles.
Price: About Rs 100 per plate
· Grilled Meat
Walking down Deforges Street in Port-Louis at night, you will have a pleasant meat smell. The smell will of no wonder titillates your brain and send a signal to your stomach putting it in hungry mode.
There are a variety of meat: Lamb, beef, chicken, sausage, prawns, lobsters, etc… The majority of the inhabitants of Port-Louis being Muslim, there is no pork meat. Everything is halal.
Concerning the taste, all the sellers are as good as each other. It is all a matter of taste. Each sellers has their own customers.
In Mauritius, Grilled Meat is often served with salad and bread.
Price: Varies with the meat
Sausage: Not more than Rs 40
Chicken: Not more than Rs 100 per leg (Without bread and salad)
Lamb and beef: Not more than Rs 100
Once again a dish from China. Mauritians love Chinese dumplings. They are locally referred to as “boulettes”. There are many types of dumplings. The preferred ones, the saomai and the boulette chouchou are mainly made from finely grated chayote and stuffed with prawns.
The chayote has a high water content, and is usually grated, pressed to remove all the water and then dried. They are then mixed with cornstarch which stick it together.
The same is process is applied to meat balls and noddle balls. They constitute a cheap and hot meal. Light, they are ideal when dieting. Chinese balls are served with a hot soup and often accompanied with fried rice or noodles.
Price: Ranges from Rs 4 to Rs 10 per dumplings
The roti or farata is a kind of Indian bread. Roti is made from water, flour, oil and salt which is then mixed together to obtain a firm paste. The paste is then allowed to stand and then made into dough which are then crushed into discs.
The dough discs are then baked onto a hot plate until it turns brown. Roti is very popular in Mauritius. There are thousands of sellers only across the tiny capital Port-Louis.
They are often seen as a breakfast alternative as they are very filling.
Rotis are served with a number of fillings. More often, large peas curry and Rougaille (cooked tomatoes).
Price: Rs 10-12 rupees. Can be more expensive depending on the filling.
· Dholl Puri
Wherever you will find roti, you will find Dholl puri there. In every town, villages, or street corner, you are sure to find roti or Dholl Puri. The Dholl puri is as famous as the roti. The only difference is that the Dholl puri is made from crushed yellow split peas.
Dholl Puri are sold in pairs but with the same fillings as the Roti.
Price: Same as the Roti.
The Haleem is a tyical Mauritian dish. It is made from lentils, masala spices and beef legs. The Haleem has a real unique taste.
Haleem is also difficult to prepare. Haleem is drank like a soup, accompanied with bread.
The Haleem is served with vinegar, lemon juice, finely chopped scallions, fried onions and chilli.
Haleem can be easily found everywhere. The authentic haleem recipe is with beef leg while there is chicken haleem or haleem with other meats as well.
Price: About Rs 50 per bowl
There are many kinds of fritters in Mauritius. Deep fried, they are a cheap snack to be consumed with moderation as they tend to contain a lot of fat.
The most famous ones are the “gateaux piment”, “gateau arouille”, “Dupain frire”, “Chana Puri”, “Samomas” and “Baja”.
Each has a unique taste. They are worth tasting.
Price: About Rs 3 per fritter.
Mauritius is not only a tropical paradise but also a culinary one. The thousands of flavors will surely give an orgasm to your taste buds.