5 street foods to try in Port Louis, Mauritius

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5 street foods to try in Port Louis, Mauritius

One of the best (and tastiest) ways to experience a place is through street food. You get to learn about the history, culture and daily life of the people, plus get inspired to try new flavours and combinations. On a recent trip to Mauritius, online editor Annzra Denita did a 3-hour walking street food tour. Here’s what she ate.

Mauritius has strong south Asian, Chinese, sub-Saharan African and European influences. The result is a range of familiar cuisine with unexpected twists. A walking tour is a great way to get a taste of the huge range of options. The tour I went on was run by Taste Buddies, and was a three-hour-long walking tour on which we learnt about Port Louis’ history, got to see points of interest and eat some of the best street food the city has to offer.

@wwtaste These are 5 of the best street foods on offer in Port Louis, Mauritius. Travel vicariously with online ed Annzra Denita as she tastes her way through a street food tour with Taste Buddies. #mauritius #streetfood #foodtok ♬ original sound – WWTaste

1. Dholl puri

According to our guides, dholl puri is the favourite street food among Mauritians. Judging from the long line of locals outside Ramsahye Maraz Palace, we believe them. Dholl is the Mauritian way of saying dhal, and this version is very similar to the South African Indian yellow dhal. Puri is a type of flatbread the dholl is served in and it’s delicious. We also got to have farathas at Ramsahye Maraz Palace, which are essentially roti rolls filled with vegetarian curry. What’s interesting is the curry had tamarind in it. While tamarind is used in some South African Indian cooking (most notably fish curry and rassum), in Mauritius it’s used in all curries. The faratha was also amazing.  This is a must-try when in Port Louis, especially if you love spicy food. P.S. You can choose your spice level when ordering.

2. Sesame balls

With a large Chinese Mauritian population, there are lots of Chinese dishes to sample on the island. In China Town, we headed to Mister CHU, which sells Asian products and artisanal Chinese cakes. Mister CHU has been in Mauritius since 1942 and the sesame balls they sell are a great reflection of the multicultural island. While sesame balls are traditionally filled with red bean paste, these were filled with pineapple and nuts! They were the perfect fusion of Chinese and island flavours: chewy, fruity balls of delight.

ALSO READ: What it’s like being on a press trip in a luxury hotel in Mauritius

3. Dumplings

Another example of Chinese Mauritian fusion is the dumplings at B Don B Snack. A massive pot of steamed dumplings with various fillings is on hand to serve people as they order. We sampled five different dumplings, a.k.a at boulettes, as they are known on the island. The dumplings are served in a delicious clear broth, and the fillings include chicken, cheese and chayote (or chu-chu as we say in SA). Chayote is common in Mauritius and works perfectly in these dumplings.

4. Fresh pineapple

Is it even an island trip if you don’t have tropical fruit? Our tour mostly took us through the city and away from tourist hot spots, but they couldn’t leave out the bustling Central Market. We went to the fresh produce side of the market where we got to sample beautifully cut pineapple. With so many parallels between food you find in Durban and Mauritian food, we couldn’t help but ask whether they also have masala pineapples. They didn’t, but they did have chilli salt to add to your pineapple. The salty, sweet, spicy combo was out of this world!

ALSO READ: The bite-sized Indian street food you’re going to want to try ASAP

5. Sugar cane juice

After three hours of walking, ice-cold sugar cane juice was the perfect way to cool down. Also located in the Central Market, Coco Cabbanna extracts the juice from the sugar cane on the spot so you get the freshest juice possible. Sugar cane is the most cultivated plant in Mauritius, so this is probably the most Mauritian beverage to drink (well, this and local rum!). Since the juice is very sweet, it’s mixed with other fruit juices and served with lots of ice. Our juice included citrus and guava.

Disclaimer: This experience was courtesy of La Paulée wine event hosted by the Constance Hotel group. The event encompassed six days of fine wine and dining, and this street food tour of the island’s capital city, Port Louis, was included in the experience. 

Curious about La Paulée? Read 6 interesting facts about wine for your next dinner party

 

Annzra Denita Article by: Annzra Denita

Annzra Denita is the digital editor of TASTE. Eating good food is her absolute favourite thing and making good food is a close second.

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