One of the most wonderful things about Mauritius is its diverse cultural landscape, which is beautifully reflected in the unique cuisine of the country and the delicious Mauritian recipes. The food here truly embodies the different ethnicities; sumptuous Indian curries are served alongside Chinese fried noodle dishes, French delicacies and Creole rougaille—these are just some of the incredible gastronomic delights you can find in Mauritius. Here almost anything is possible; from African and European to Indian and Asian dishes which are recreated in incredible ways unique to Mauritius.
Some of the staple ingredients you will find in Mauritian recipes include garlic, ginger, onions, chillies, tomatoes and an array of aromatic spices which serves as the base of many mouth-watering Mauritian dishes. These ingredients are often cooked to make a typical Mauritian sauce known as rougaille. This spicy sauce is then combined with vegetables and seafood or meat which is then served with achard (pickles), rice or dhal. Palm heart and wild boar are often found in French cuisine, many Chinese dishes often centre on fish, and seasonal tropical vegetables and fruit are available throughout the year and are found in many traditional Mauritian recipes.
The perfect balance of spices—beautiful, aromatic spices such as turmeric, cinnamon, cardamom and cloves—is key in many Mauritian recipes. The spices used are often hand crushed and blended together to create a phenomenal seasoning which underpins many of the island’s unforgettable Indian-inspired curries. Indian breads and pickles enhance aromatic dishes, delicious daubes are made with local ingredients and beautiful, fresh meals can be enjoyed across the island.
One of the must-try Mauritian recipes or dishes includes the Mauritian Fish Vindaye. It’s made of fish that is fried and preserved in an incredible mixture of mustard seeds, chilli, garlic, vinegar and olive oil. It's an easy recipe and a popular dish that is served either hot or cold with the staples of rice, dhal and pickles.
The Indian influence on Mauritian cuisine is abundantly clear, but the moreish Mauritian curries are actually quite different from their Indian counterparts. Unlike Indian curries, they generally contain more European herbs, don’t call for coconut milk and often have more unusual meats such as duck or octopus which are then combined with some of the local vegetables.
Some of the best Mauritian recipes and absolute must-try delicacies in Mauritians are found in small street stalls (particularly in Port Louis). The superb street food of Mauritius, like the other Mauritian dishes, showcase the countries wonderful ethnic diversity.
You can find Indian-inspired snacks such as samosas, yellow split pea chilli bites called gateaux piment, spring rolls, dhal puri (a type of flatbread served with a variety of Mauritian sambals and pickles), Boulet (a type of Mauritian dim sum) and bol renverser (or “upside down bowl)—one of the most popular dishes in Mauritius that is made with chicken, prawn, stir-fried vegetables, rice and sauces with an egg on top.
But that’s not to say that the amazing Mauritian cuisine is restricted to savoury foods. The island has incredible desserts too. You can find anything from delicate French-inspired tartlets filled with banana, cream or nuts and bread pudding to flan, napolitaines (little sugary shortbread creations) and an array of fresh tropical fruit.
There’s no doubt that Mauritius is a gourmet's paradise. It has everything you could possibly want to satisfy your palate and enhance your trip to this paradisiacal island. Not sure what to expect when you it comes to the food in Mauritius? Then try out a couple of the Mauritian recipes for yourself to get a taste of the gorgeous country before you visit.