Etiquettes To Follow At An Indian Dining

The diversity of India and its culture is huge, but there is one thing that is common in India, which is the dining etiquette; though there might be some dissimilarities, Just like every other culture around the world, dining etiquette is really important to follow in India. Therefore if you go to an Indian Restaurant In Penrith or visit your Indian friend, it is nice that you are aware of all the dos and Don’ts so you would not come out to be rude to the host. Here is a list of some basic etiquette that you should know while visiting your friend or the Best Indian Restaurant In Wollongong:

Before the Meal

For all the Indians, there is a basic principle that they follow, which is “Atithi Devo Bhava,” which translates to ‘Guest Is God’. In India, no matter where you are, it is quite normal for people to ask you to stay for a meal as this is their way of showing love and respect to their guests. So it’s no surprise when you go to visit an Indian Household you will be requested to stay till meal time. In Indian culture, it is considered rude to let the guests leave without feeding them, especially when they leave during meal time. Therefore it is alright for you to say yes and stay till mealtime. 

And if you are invited for a meal, you should go 15-20 minutes late, giving your host all time to prepare. Although you won’t be served the food right away as before the main meal, you will first be with a few drinks and snacks as a pre-appetizer, and then you will be moving on to the main course.

Preparing to eat the meal

As the meal is announced, you will see Indians running to wash and dry their hands, as it is considered unclean to eat the meal before washing your hands. While Dining, most of the Indians eat their meals sitting on the ground on a floor mat. In urban areas, there are proper dining table settings now, but in rural areas, people still sit on the ground to enjoy their meal, where the host keeps an eye on who needs what and keeps serving them accordingly. 

Sequence of food

When it comes to Indian food, there is no sequence or course. Everything is offered to you in one go, and you would be served a variety of food that you can choose from. A standard Indian meal generally involves flatbread, which can be naan, roti, or paratha, with dal, sabzi, curry, rice, raita, salad, and pickle with a sweet dish that is served after the meal on a separate plate or bowel rest of the food is served in one plate. 

Use of cutlery

India is popular for the culture of eating with hands as it is considered rude to use utensils at an Indian dining place even though curry or da,l spoons are used but not the whole meal completely. It is also said that when you eat with your hands, a positive energy radiates from your hand, which goes inside you with every bite you eat. The right way of eating Indian food is to tear up a bite-size of flatbread using your right hand, keeping the left one dry for passing the food or drinking water, and scoop in dal or sabzi by holding the flatbread into the shape of a taco or a cone and take it straight to your mouth. 

Share your food

Sharing your food is highly encouraged in Indian culture. In case you and your friends order different things, it is obligatory to share your food not from your plate as it is considered unhygienic to dip your spoon or fork in another person’s plate but share the food from the serving bowl. 

Finish your meal

You mustn’t leave any food on your plate and finish it all. Leaving food on your plate is considered an unnecessary waste of food, which is frowned upon in Indian culture. You are not obligated to eat each and everything that is offered to you, but once you put it on your plate, you must now leave anything on the plate. What you can do is take a very small portion of the food just to taste so you can take more if you like it. Avoid putting food on your plate that you can’t finish.

Complement the host

In the end, when everyone is done eating, make sure to compliment the host for their kindness and for serving you food. Also, remember not to get up from your seat unless and until the host or the eldest person is done eating. It isn’t polite to get up from your seat while everyone else is still eating.

These are some of the basic etiquette to know while you eat at an Indian place. So the next time you are united for dinner, be sure to follow these etiquettes as a way of paying respect to the culture.

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