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From Mountains to Momos - A food journey to Everest

A trip to Nepal should be high on the bucket list of any adventure traveller and is certainly a must for anyone working within the travel industry. ... Read more
From Mountains to Momos - A food journey to Everest

A trip to Nepal should be high on the bucket list of any adventure traveller and is certainly a must for anyone working within the travel industry. So, when I found out that I would be making the amazing journey, trekking to Everest Basecamp, I was over the moon. For me though, the journey would not just be about the amazing trekking, the towering peaks of the Himalaya or the local people that I would encounter along the way, for me it would also be about the food.

What do you eat on a trek of this kind? I did have a vague idea of what to expect but being a bit of a foodie I was also immensely curious to find out in reality what we would be eating as almost everything you come across along the Everest Base Camp trail has to be carried either by a superhuman Nepali or a yak! With this in mind I didn’t hold out a great deal of hope.

However I couldn’t have been more wrong! Of course the food options we were presented with were no five star dining experience but each dish was much more satisfying and tastier than I ever would have imagined.



Breakfast O’Clock

Almost all the tea houses will offer some sort of set breakfast to keep trekkers going for a good few hours and these generally consist of toast, eggs, beans, tea or coffee. Chapatis with jam or honey and omelettes are popular alternatives. Porridge is also a good alternative to the set breakfast if they make it with milk! However, if not then there is always the safe option of a pancake. Soft and fluffy and normally over an inch thick, these pancakes should be able to fuel even the hungriest of travellers and I can highly recommend the apple or cinnamon ones.



Carb loading at lunch and dinner

When it comes to lunch and dinner, it seems most appropriate to carb it up with either noodles, pasta, potatoes or rice and then add mixed vegetables to your chosen dish. Some may find this a little monotonous after a while so try adding some egg to the dish for a bit of a protein boost or some of the spicy chilli sauces that many of the tea house have to add a little bit of a kick.

This type of meal is a decent quick fill so great for trekking and there is also some evidence to suggest that consuming carbohydrates can help with the acclimatization process, so it is worth remembering that too. The more traditional dishes of sherpa stew and dahl bat are also on offer for travellers to try. Almost every tea house has its own version of these with the latter having the advantage of being able to get seconds for free!



Light bites and treats!

Nearly all trekkers lose their appetite as they ascend the trail even if they don’t notice it (I certainly didn’t) but there is one dish available that is smaller than most lunch or dinner dishes that is still very tasty and will provide you with a sufficient amount of energy - momos! The Nepalese momo is basically a steamed or fried dumpling containing a variety of different fillings and is generally accompanied by a spicy tomato or nut dip. There are meat versions available along the trail but as it is recommended to avoid meat during the trek, you should always opt for the veggie options. These little morsels are really delicious though and you will find that you can eat an awful lot of them without realising! Most veggie varieties have shredded vegetables with a little curried spice in them but you can also find non-spicy versions made with mustard leaf, which is similar to spinach.
Similarly to the ‘momo’ and when you are on the descent and suddenly your appetite increases, you will also come across the ‘mars’ or ‘snickers’ roll. This is a whole chocolate bar wrapped in a dough and made to look a bit like a pasty or giant momo and then deep-fried. These are definitely not for anyone who is worried about their waistline but after trekking to Everest Basecamp, most of us should be able to allow ourselves an indulgence such as one of these tasty little treats.

So if you are thinking of travelling to Nepal to do a trek of this nature but you are worried about the food, don’t!

There is plenty of choice and the majority of teahouses execute the dishes very well. You may of course have to forgo alcohol, meat and caffeine drinks such as coffee for the time you are on trek but as you will see from the list above you certainly should not go hungry. Plus your mind will be distracted by all the amazing scenery and mountain ranges so they are sacrifices worth making!

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