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What do we call the big round thing in the image that contains the small bowls?

Is this a:

a. container
b. bowl
c. dish
d. plate
e. platter
f. OR WHAT?

picture of a dish holding several small bowls of food arranged around some rice

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In Britain, where we have a lot of Indian restaurants, we are used to calling the main dish a thali, or thali plate, and a main dish with a set of smaller bowls or dishes is a thali set. Pronounced like 'tally'.

Thali Plate

A thali is a round platter with an eared rim. ... The thali is generally made with steel or copper. Other dishes served on a thali include vegetables, yogurt, chutney, and pickles.

enter image description here

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It depends on how much you want to Anglicise, which depends in turn on who you are talking to.

It is a thali, for example, being sold on ebay. This is the most specific, but many English speakers won't know this English word.

It is a "stainless steel, Indian style serving tray".

It is a dish, a plate, a tray, a platter. You could use any of these words, and combine with adjectives if you need to describe it to someone who is not familiar with Indian food service.

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I'd call it a 'serving dish'. To be more specific, I'd call it a 'divided serving dish' or a 'serving dish with compartments'.

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Others have already given the correct name of thali, but I wanted to add what I thought before learning that word here:

  • container implies full enclosure for storage or shipment
  • bowl has a curved bottom, either partially or completely
  • dish is a generic term and best avoided when there’s a more specific one
  • plate is flat with no lip
  • platter has several food items directly on it, usually with no divisions

One you didn’t list:

  • tray is a dish for carrying other dishes, but not food directly

Your picture appears to be a combination of a tray (carrying toppings and sauce) and a platter (carrying rice and bread), so someone who doesn’t know the word thali would likely use one of those two words, or just the generic dish rather than using a more specific word they knew wasn’t right.

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