Monday, May 27, 2013

Dal Baht Power, 24 Hour

The best food to fuel strenuous stairclimbs and steep descents, is, without a doubt, dal baht. Proud of their national dish, porters and restaurant owners alike will repeat the refrain “dal baht power, 24 hour,” because it really does seem to last that long (especially with a second helping).

Served on a large, stainless steel platter, dal baht consists of a mound of white rice, surrounded by a few different kinds of curry, which vary slightly from village to village, but almost always includes a potato/onion/spinach curry, another cooked/curried vegetable, a spicy pickled condiment, a few slices of cucumber, and a papadum. And of course, a bottomless bowl of dal. In fact, most of the components are bottomless.

As if you need any other reason to choose dal baht, the Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) encourages trekkers to choose the same dish when ordering (rather than one person ordering a burger, and someone else ordering a pizza), because fuel is precious in the mountains. If it’s wood, it has to be cut down and carried to the village (and there isn’t much in the way of reforestation programs in Nepal), and if it’s gas, it has to be hauled up by humans or mules, often from great distances.

Furthermore, compared to some other dishes on the menu, all of the ingredients for dal baht are grown locally, possibly from the very village you’re in.

So there you have it: dal baht – a deliciously eco-friendly decision.

Nepalese, masterful (if not a bit cruel...) stair builders.
Down, down, down we go...


  1. That. Looks. DELICIOUS.

    Katelin xo

  2. Is there a recipe for dal or is it mostly just guess as it looks delicious? See you guys soon. Love Mum & Dad