Appears in
Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

By Darra Goldstein

Published 2015

  • About

India is the second most populous country in the world after China and the seventh largest in area. No other country has such a diversity of climates and soils, races and languages, religions and sects, tribes, castes and classes, customs—and cuisines. Sometimes India is compared with Europe in its multitude of languages and ethnic groups—but imagine a Europe with eight religions (four of them born on Indian soil), each with its own dietary prohibitions and restrictions. This cultural diversity is reflected in the number and variety of sweets and sweet dishes.