How to eat Indian food with your hand

I moved to India when I was 28, and I felt a bit intimidated by the idea of eating with my hand. But not being one to shy away from a challenge I decided it was something I should learn… I was definitely pretty clumsy for a few months and very messy. I paid a lot of attention to how others did it and asked a lot of questions. 

Here’s what I learned

1. Only use one hand. (Preferably the right hand, you can read more about why here) I actually used to put my left hand in my lap so I wouldn't be tempted to use it until I got used to eating with one hand. 

2. Mix rice and curry with your fingertips, smoosh it a little so it becomes like a blob.

3. Use your fingertips to pick up the food. 

4. Put your thumb behind the food and use it like a shovel to push the food blob in to your mouth 

You will know you have succeeded if you can eat without getting the palm of your hand dirty, and as you get better less and less of the length of your fingers will be dirty. 

You can also learn to break bread (e.g. Naan, Roti or Paratha) with your hand. You use your fingers to hold the bread down on the plate and pull it with your thumb to break it. You can then use the bread to pick up meat or curry and eat it. 

Need to order some curry and rice to try eating with your hand? 

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