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Himal Chuli means “mountain hearth.” It is the name of an icy mountain peak watching over our hometown Bandipur, a hill bazaar atop a ridge on the southern slope of the Nepal Himalaya. We offer you authentic tastes from this region enjoyed by our family for centuries.

 

Our two-thousand year-old urban culture is famous for its festivals, feasts and hospitality in the previously verdant and fertile Kathmandu Valley. The food of the Newar cultures indigenous to the valley specially blends spices only found in the complex cultural and natural environment of the mountains. More subtle, light and mild than flavors found in to the south in the plains of India, yet retaining blends of spices and grains unavailable further north in high valleys and the high Tibetan plateau.

 

The main spices of our authentic home cooking include garlic, ginger, cilantro, chives, cumin, chili, mustard, fenugreek, bay leaves, cardamom, cloves, nutmeg, timur, jimmu, and jwano. These delicious spices are always purchased fresh from the many farmers' markets scattered throughout every city and town in Nepal. Famous for strengthening and cleansing the body, they are utilized medicinally as well as in cooking. Here in our restaurant we also use fresh spices and buy all our ingredients locally as much as possible.

 

Although we have delicious meat dishes, we feature vegetarian and vegan cuisine and, with many strict vegetarians in our families, carefully separate the implements used in cooking the two kinds of dishes.

 

A typical Nepali meal consists of a plateful of steamed rice (bhaat), stewed vegetables (tarkaari), a mild mixed bean soup (daal), greens (saag), and some kind of pickle (achaar). Among northern highlanders such as the famed Sherpas, flatbread (roti), steamed dumplings (momo), and spicy soup (thukpa) are the staples, often served with endless cups of churned butter tea, previously carried overland from China to Nepal in tightly packed bricks on the famed "horse and tea road" as fortification against dry and chilly alpine winds. Our menu features dishes from both these traditions.

 

The Newar communities are famous for their hospitality, and every household greets its daily stream of visitors with cups of hot spiced tea (chiya), finger foods (kaaja) and leisurely talk. Colorful spreads of many different dishes enjoyed by hundreds of relatives and friends adorn our numerous festivals and weeks long wedding ceremonies.

 

Besides full meals, Himal Chuli offers some light foods which can be eaten as snack, lunch or an appetizer. Rice or roti with daal and tarkari makes a hearty and nutritional lunch or dinner.

 

Traditionally, we eat with our hands and prefer to blend small bits of the different foods as we eat. We think this tastes better than eating with silverware.

 

Thank You and Namaste!
Bishnu Pradhan