Food experiments are never-ending for a foodie or anyone who loves to eat! And, if you are someone who enjoys trying out innovative dishes, then Goa has a lot to offer you. To begin with, one could start by exploring the local street food, which gives a glimpse into Goa’s cuisine − a cuisine that has both local and foreign influences.
The foreign influence comes from the Portuguese, who ruled Goa for a long period of time, and during that phase, introduced a lot of food items and dishes into the state. The result being that Goa’s cuisine is a melange of, both, Indian and Portuguese cultures.
Today, if you go around the villages of Goa, you will come across several stainless steel push carts, dubious kiosks and rears of bicycles serving some interesting street food. The menu of these foods outlets hasn’t changed much over the years, which means that Choris Pao (sausage bread), Cutlet Bread, Beef Bread, Ros Omelet, Paya Soup, Beef Chilly, Pork Amsol, Pork Hadd Mass, etc aren’t going out of fashion anytime soon!
With this array of street food, there is always a debate about which of these tops the list of favourites. Rather than debating about it, why not take a bit of the much-loved street food of Goa.
1. SAUSAGE BREAD (CHORIS PAO)
Pronounced as 'Cho-rees' and spelt as ‘choris’ or ‘chouriços’, these are a hot favourite among Goans. They are pork sausages, traditionally made in Goa.
Spicy in taste, these sausages are boiled and stir fried with plenty of onions and a few potatoes. The spicy masala of the sausages gives an aromatic and overpowering flavour to the stuffing. When served with Goan ‘pao’ (bread) or ‘poee/poi’ (whole-wheat flour bread), it tastes heavenly! The bread filled with this stuffing is to die for, and most people are not satisfied with just one, but end up having two or even more.
Price: Rs 60 to Rs 180
Where: Agassaim, near St Lawrence bakery
When: 6 pm onwards
2. CUTLET BREAD
Have you tried Goa’s version of the burger? Well, if you haven’t, then here is something you absolutely have to try. The Cutlet Bread is stuffed with slices of beef which have been marinated in masala, then coated with semolina and finally shallow fried. The accompanying salad consists of shredded cabbage, tomatoes, onions, and other veggies, giving a lively and fresh taste to the crispy slice of meat. Ketchup, slathered on the bread, lend a tangy sweet taste. The Cutlet Bread is one of those snacks that sells like hot cakes! These days, some vendors have created their own versions, and serve chicken in lieu of beef. Apart from this substitution, the rest of the recipe remains the same. The crispier the steak, the better the flavour!
Price: Rs 60 to Rs 150
Where: D'Silva's Fast Food, Miramar Circle, Panjim
When: 6 pm onwards
3. PAYA SOUP
Interestingly, the average street food menu is incomplete without a bowl of hot, steamy Paya Soup. Paya, or trotters, are cooked and the broth is served as soup. Brownie points if you find meat. Paya Soup is believed to be nutritious and healthy, especially if people want to boost their immunity and keep the common cold away. That’s an additional reason why Paya Soup is totally worth trying.
Price: Rs 20 to Rs 50
Where: Majorda, Near Oscar's Junction
When: 6 pm onwards
4. ROS OMELET
Another popular street food found all over the state, is Ros Omelet. Goans have mastered the art of turning an ordinary omelet into a mind-blowing dish! The omelet is first prepared using onions, tomatoes and chillies and served with Chicken Xacuti gravy. A sprinkle of lime and onion on the top takes the humble omelet to a whole new lever! Ros Omelet is one of the earliest street foods of Goa, and continues to make it to the must-eat list of many.
Price: Rs 45 to Rs 180
Where: Ulhas Gaddo, Margao
When: 6.30 pm onwards (Mondays closed)
Several other meat options are available at these fast food outlets. Evenings are the busiest time for the food trucks and kiosks as a large number of people line up to enjoy some appetizing evening snacks.