Top Six Tibetan Food that You Must Try During Your Tibet Tours (part 1)

Barley, Wheat, and potatoes are the most three crops that Tibetan farmers grow, which form a special cuisine with Tibetan style to fit the plateau natural situation. Here we introduce top six food on the must-eat list of Tibet Highland Tours.

1.     Zanba
It’s a traditional main food for Tibetan citizens. People knead the flour of highland barley or peas, mixed with butter tea, and finally shape it into a clump. You can eat it with Salty Tea, Yogurt, or Qingke Liquor. The dry and cool climate makes Zanba well preservation. So, you can see Zanba on the dining table of nearly every Tibetan family. There more, the pilgrims will never starve as long as they bring along with Zanba, what else they need is just water. Besides, Zanba can be found in many religious ceremonies as well. With so many advantages, you cannot miss it when you travel to Tibet

Traditional Main Food for Tibetans---Zanba

2.     Yak Meat
Except for potatoes, other vegetables are not easy to plant on the plateau field. Compared with meat, the energy of it cannot meet the demand of Tibetan people to defense the coldness either. Thus, meat is more helpful for Tibetans to live in oxygen-deprived environments with high altitude. Just a few locals are vegetarians same as lamas and monks in the monasteries. Here the meat refers to the meat of Yaks, Sheep, and Pigs that are fed by Tibetans. Seafood and wild animals are not on the cooking roll for Tibetan people. According to Buddhism, killing is a big sin and can be accumulated to cause bad luck for the coming life. And in some area, the dead people are buried in the river, that’s why Tibetans don’t eat fish. There is another distinct custom that the Tibetan people are used to eating raw yak meat. It’s tastier after freezing or air drying.

Yaks Jerky---The Yak Meat after Drying

3.     Tea
The most famous tea in Tibet is known as Butter Tea. People stir the mixture of salt, hot water, one kind of special tea, and the butter which is extracted from Yak milk. Then they put it into a bucket so that they can eat or treat guests all day.
There are another two types of tea that commonly drink in Tibet. One is green tea, the other is sweet tea. Green tea is imported from India, usually for poor people drinking. Sweet tea is originated from Nepal, with time passing, it becomes a new beverage which contents milk, Indian tea, and white or brown sugar.
All of the above tea have a health-care effect, the difference is the butter tea is made in the morning, sweet tea in the noon, while green tea in the evening. Drinking tea is a necessary part of Tibetan culture that integrated into the locals’ social life. You can see many teahouses in the avenues and alleys of Tibet, which are mostly selling sweet tea. If you have chances to come to Tibet, it’s really a good way to explore Tibetan culture by drinking a cup of sweet tea and chatting with people in a crowded tea house.  

The Well-known Tibetan Butter Tea


                                                                ------------to be continued


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