Traditional Tamilian meals (that’s from South India) are always served on a banana leaf. These are commonly found in weddings, festivals and music concerts.
As a child, I had always seen that they brought the food out to you in a particular order and you weren’t supposed to start eating until they had finished serving all of the components. And I always wondered if there was any real logic to it.
After some reading, I discovered that there was! So here’s my take on the various parts of the traditional Tamilian meal.
Here they are from the right in clockwise order: Pot of water, Appalam, Fruit (bananas for this instance), salt, pickle, poriyal (roasted), aviyal (mashed), steamed idlis (with podi), varuval (fried), vadai (deep fried), Jalebi & Payasam (sweets), Paruppu (dal), Sambar, Rasam, Curd and a mountain of rice!
In Indian mythology, only a few characters are strongly associated with food - Nala (from Nala-Damayanti) for being an expert cook, Bheema (from the Mahabharat) & Kumbhakarna (from Ramayana) for their voracious appetite and our very own Ganesha for his love of food. In the end, Ganesha received the invitation to dine at my meal illustration :-)