Around the world, there are many diverse cultures (and subcultures), each with its own distinct way of life. Each religion, literature, and even language is unique and wonderful in its own way. The Desi culture is no exception to this. But what exactly is the Desi Culture?

The word  ‘Desi’ refers to people who are from India, Pakistan, or Bangladesh. It is also used to define the goods and lifestyles of these countries. There are over a million Desi students in the UK, each with their own routines (some of which sometimes may not make sense to anyone else!). Here are 6 things a Desi student wishes more people knew about the Desi culture.

Chai Over Coffee Any day

masala chai tea
Source: Bon Appetit

Student life can get tiring sometimes. For some of us students, coffee is a lifesaver and is probably one of the only things sometimes that can keep us going. But for some of us Desi students, the only thing to get us through the day is a nice hot cup of Masala Chai. Often made in a pan, Chai is made with a mixture of black tea in water and milk with a splash of some different herbs and spices.

What Are Spoons?

desi culture
Source: HerZindagi

Another thing you should know is if you are friends with someone from the Desi clan, we sometimes tend to eat food using our fingers. Obviously, not foods like morning cereals or soups but food such as rice and chapatis with curry. Eating foods using your fingers (using your right hand) is taught to some Desi students from a very young age and is considered respectful and can be part of some religions.

No Such Thing as just Salt and Pepper

desi student culture
Source: CNN

Desi students would stock their cupboards with spices and herbs, some of which you may not be able to get at your local supermarket. Many desi students wish they didn’t have to explain why they had so many herbs and spices. If you’re desi, you can never have too many spices and herbs! They will never use just salt and pepper, it’s almost an offence to the community.

Experts at Curry Making

desi student girl
Source: I Am A Food Blog

It may seem like a cliche, but most of us Desi students have been raised on the different types of curries and have them on a daily basis. If you live with a fellow desi student, you will have the chance to taste some delectable curries that will leave you wanting more.

Biryani, Biryani and even more Biryani

desi student culture
Source: Wikipedia

Every semester when we Desi students return to our student halls, there is a very high chance that we will bring a box of Biryani with us. This will happen, again and again. Biryani is a mixed rice dish and is made with rice, a bunch of (random) spices and meat (usually chicken, lamb or fish). One thing we want you to know is that the Desi culture never runs low on Biryani. In each household, it is made at least once a week and can be made in many different ways.

Beware if you take a bite though!

Desi students like sharing their meals and adding that little *bit* of spice to the lives of their fellow non-desi dorm mates. However, what desi people will not tell you is that you have to be careful when eating meals such as Biryani and vegetable curries. No, it’s not poisonous, don’t worry! Seasonings like black stone flowers, cloves, and cardamon are sometimes added to Desi dishes to add a little more flavour. Some desi students (and their folks) tend to just throw it into their meals without crushing them. If this is the case, then they’re likely to appear in your meal without you noticing. Like we said, beware of every bite you take.