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Sunday, December 23, 2007

Delhi cuisine

The foodie that I am, Janardan and Meer say that I should never get a job in MacDonald's for I'll eat more than what I am being paid.

Delhi, apart from being the country's capital, has unique cuisine to offer. It is typically made in mustard oil and in opulent servings. Maybe because of the cold, but you can really digest all that.

At a shop in Chandni chowk, we had parathas. Served with a sumptous serving of three subzis and yummy gaajar ka achaar, these parathas come in a wide range of flavours/stuffings. All we know is mooli and aaloo parathas, but there were atleast thirty names on the menu of this rather small shop in the alleys of Chandni chowk.

The parathas are not made on a tawa - instead, they are made in a huge semicircular kadhai. They are stuffed with the vegetable of your choice, covered in flour of some sort and then, baked. And two parathas down, you are full.

'Pani puri' is something I love. Pani puri in Delhi is different - the puris are made of wheat flour. They are hard to break when you eat it. So, the 'mouth-fills-with-panipuri-ka-pani' feeling is missing. This was, hence, almost a letdown.

Eating kulfi falooda or ice cream while walking down the cold streets of Delhi is a feeling words cannot describe. You dont have to worry about catching a cold - it's nowhere. For me, the sweet sewiyaan with the cold icecream is DIVINE!

Aloo chat is another unique Delhi dish - fried pieces of aaloo with unique chat masaala. That's something you don't get in Mumbai. The aaloo lover that I am, I loved this!

The Paneer you get in Delhi is what should be called Paneer. Paneer elsewhere should be called 'edible Natraj eraser'. The weather of Delhi must be conducive for the fermentation process - because the paneer is certainly the softest paneer I've ever seen.

I happened to stay at Siddharth's place who is from Delhi. In addition to the warm hospitality, I also got to taste the more 'homely' dishes of Delhi too. They are oily - but extremely tasty. Rajma chawal, I found out, is the 'varan bhaat' of Delhi. And yes, I also know why people dig 'sarso ka sag, makke ki roti'!! The combination is absolutely amazing!!

Worth mentioning are dahi bhalle - that closely resemble dahi wada, kathi kabab and tikde - bhakri in its smaller, thicker form.

Overall, the food was one of the many reasons why I would remember my trip to Delhi!!

Lovingly dedicated to Siddharth and Bhaumik, who I had an awesome time with, there in Delhi.

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