Street food is unique to every country or region. Whether it is tapas in Spain, or satay in Malaysia, samoosa and fish cutlets in Mauritius, or doner and kebap in Istanbul – street food offers a cheap, quick and easy way to meet friends and savour the regional delights. Delhi is no exception. Summer or winter, street food changes with the season. The best places to eat are in Chandni Chowk, Karol Baug market and Connaught Place. The most popular snacks are :Gol gappas, Chaat, Samosas, Paneer rolls or Tikkis. These savoury items drizzle in oil and masalas making the food – tangy and mouth-watering. Healthier versions include a fruit chaat or baked samosas. Often road side kiosks and vendors sell toasted Bengal gram and peanuts, lightly flavoured with masala and topped with finely chopped onion, coriander and lemon slices. Crunch, crunch, yum !!
Delightfully flavoured Bengal Gram – ‘Chana Jor’
My friend Dr. Mridula shares her Delhi special recipe called Kulle Chaat.
A combination of sweet and tangy, fruit and vegetable – a perfect snack. Mridula is not only a fantastic cook, but also runs her own Pathology lab. A doting mother and wife, she is always experimenting with new recipes and perfecting old ones! Thanks dear.
Recipe – Kulle Chaat or Kulia Chaat
preparation time 30 minutes
cooking time 10 minutes
Kulle Chaat- snack
3 potatoes, boiled
3 tomatoes, ripe, firm
1 kheera or tender cucumber
1 boiled sweet potato
For garnish and presentation: 2 halved oranges,
1 peeled and slit banana
1 large slice of mango
For the topping: 1/2 cup – boiled, small, white chana (chick pea)
1/4 cup boiled green peas
thin juliennes of ginger – 1 tablespoon
fresh pomegranate (anar daana) seeds -1/2 cup
chopped coriander – 1 tablespoon
lemon juice – 1 tablespoon
black chaat masala, salt to taste
1. Cut potatoes and tomatoes in halves and kheera in 2 inch pieces.
2. Scoop out the centres, forming baskets (kulle), and prepare them to stand on plate.
3. Mix boiled chana and peas, add salt and chaat masala, lemon juice.
4. Fill the vegetable baskets with the above mixture. Top with ginger julienne, coriander leaves and lots of anar dana pearls. This gives a very colourful texture to this chaat.
Colourful garnished Kulle chaat . Courtesy: Internet
Similarly prepare baskets with orange halves, mango slices, banana slit length wise or boiled sweet potato. Stuff the filling and garnish as above. Served as snack.
Contributed by Dr. Mridula Gami
On another note, crispy, hot pakoras are all-time favourites with Indians. Downed with masala chai on a rainy day, these crispies can also be served with as cocktail accompaniments. Street vendors frying these crispy dumplings in large, black iron wok is a common sight in Delhi.
Iron wok to fry vegetable Pakora
Let’s experiment with a variety of vegetables: cauliflower florets, onion rings, spinach leaves, slices of raw banana or egg-plant.
Recipe : Assorted Pakoras / Bhajjiya
Ingredients: 1 cup chickpeas (gram) flour – (called Besan in India) ½ cup Rice flour (optional) – this makes it crisp 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander 1 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon turmeric 1/2 teaspoon chilli powder ½ spoon ajwain (or fennel /carom seeds) – aids digestion 3/4 cup water or as reqd. oil for deep-frying Assorted vegetables cut into thin rings or slices
- Sift the chickpeas flour into a medium bowl. Mix in the rice flour, coriander and ajwain, coarsely ground, salt, turmeric, chilli powder, garam masala.
- Make a well in the centre of the flour. Gradually pour the water into the well and mix to form a thick, smooth batter.
- Over medium high heat in a large, heavy saucepan, heat the oil, it should not overheat and become smoky.
- Coat the cauliflower / potato/ onions/ corn in the batter and fry them in small batches until golden brown, about 4 to 5 minutes. Drain on paper towel.
- Serve hot with tomato sauce or mint chutney.
Use the left overs in lentil curry the next day. I am sure there WON’T be many leftovers !:).
Pakora – spinach, egg-plant,potato, onion, cauliflower. Garnish of marinated onion and ginger juliene with toasted sesame seeds.
Recently found a similar themed blogsite with great snapshots:http://www.mslimalicious.com/2014/06/the-food-of-north-india.html.