Though fish, curry and rice forms the three basic necessities of Goan life, Goan cuisine, like the land itself, has many flavors and tastes with its vast treasure trove of culinary delicacies. The long period of Portuguese rule, besides that of the Muslim and Hindu kingdoms, has left an indelible influence on the original style of Goan cooking which in turn has led to an exotic mix of truly tasty and spicy cuisine.
Due to their easy availability, seafood especially fish and coconut occupy a pride of place is some form or the other in Goan cuisine and delicacies made from these items can be expected in nearly every Goan meal. Infact, the use of coconut as one of the main flavoring agents in various forms (grated fresh coconut, coconut paste, grated or powdered ripe coconut or coconut milk) along with ‘kokum’, a sour, deep red colored fruit that gives it a sharp and sour flavor is what makes Goan cooking distinctly unique and different from others.
Renowned the world over as a haven for seafood delicacies, Goa offer world-class prawns, lobsters, crabs, and jumbo pomfrets dishes such as Ambot tik, a slightly sour curry dish which can be prepared with either fish or meat, but more usually fish; Caldeirada - a mildly flavored offering in which fish or prawns are cooked into a kind of stew with vegetables, and often flavored with wine. Racheiado - a delicious preparation in which a whole fish, usually a mackerel or pomfret, is slit down the center and stuffed with a spicy red sauce, after which it is cooked normally. Rissois - snacks or starters made from prawns, fried in pastry shells. Besides fresh seafood, dried and salted fish dishes are also highly prized by Goans and are used to make a variety of curries, fries, soups and pickles
Also famous the world over are its sweetened products such as 'Arroz Doce'(sweetened rice), bebinca, a wonderful concoction made from layer upon layer of coconut pancakes, dodol -a Goan sweet, traditionally eaten at Christmas time, and made with rice flour, coconut milk, jaggery and cashew nuts.
Though Goan food is mostly chili hot, spicy, and pungent, it is still able to satisfy even the most finicky gourmet appetites.