The most populous state of India, Uttar Pradesh has the most exotic recipes of the country in its kitty. The state capital, Lucknow (erstwhile Awadh), in particular is the favourite haunt of the gastronomes as Uttar Pradesh inherited the secrets of the nawabi cuisines. Thus amongst many other things Lucknow boasts of the rich and world famous Awadhi cuisine.
Outstanding feature of Awadhi tradition of cooking is the the 'Dum Pukht' process of preparing food. In this unique style, food is sealed in large pots called handi and placed over slow fire, allowing the ingredients to be cooked in their own juices under the under a strict supervision of bawarchis (cooks). It takes about three days to prepare the meal in a traditional manner. Bewitching aroma emanates on opening the lid of the handis. Finesse is also apparent in the blending of the various spices in Avadhi cuisine. 'Dastarkhwan', the ceremonial tradition of laying food on the table and a celebrated tradition of nawabs transcends the traditional cuisine into a fine-art.
Otherwise, a vast majority of the state enjoys simple and sober vegetarian meals. With dal, roti, subzi and rice constituting the essentials of daily food habits. Pooris and kachoris are relished on special occasions.