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AGRA BREAKFAST FOOD WALK

AGRA BREAKFAST FOOD WALK

 

The Tajnagari needs no introduction. It is home to perhaps two of the greatest symbols of love. Taj Mahal and hot street food made with love. I came here to give the latter its due attention. The city comes to life in the early hours of the day, and so did I, excited to explore this culinary haven.

My ambrosial journey through the rustic lanes of the city began at Dilli Gate Chai Waala, a small, bustling shop that never closes. And it literally never closes, serving piping hot tea 24×7, this ever-welcoming shop does not even have a shutter! Here I met Tahir, who shared my passion for greasy street-food and was well versed with the nooks and corners of the city, to take me on a breakfast food trail. We started with some Chai with pleasing flavours of ginger, long pepper, and cardamom; and to go along with it some butter lathered elaichi rusk and Bun Maska. The Bun Maska, like all other breads available at this place, was toasted on coals, which is their speciality.

With Chai in our systems and appetites expanded, we were ready to take on our next adventure and have, as Tahir mentioned, some Lashkari food; the food of the Mughal Army. We headed straight to the heart of the walled city, Nai Basti, but don’t let the name confuse you. Nai by name, the entire place was drenched in an old-world charm. Through the tight alleys we reached Mughal Nihari, a place known to have kept the authentic flavours and strong use of masalas intact in its Nihari recipe. The Paaye, meat, and bone marrow are all cooked overnight in the authentic masalas and served with the traditional Khamiri Roti. The fibres of the soft, well-cooked meat break down into the gravy and pleasing my palette with the strong masalas. Be sure to ask them for what among the mutton, Paaye, and bone marrow you want more and they will be more than happy to build your bowl to your preference. For Rs. 80 per plate, this place is sure to leave your pocket and your stomach happy, but make sure you reach here early in the morning as they run out of the preparation by 10 am.

Next on our food trail was Haleem. On a small, road-side stand in Kashmiri Bazaar, awaited us an early morning Haleem, a thick, protein filled gravy made of daal, meat, and an assortment of spices, that is sure to keep your hunger at bay for a few hours. This Haleem was loaded with turmeric and served, dressed with green chilli to add to the heat. The dish is cooked overnight where pressure is applied to the daal and the meat, which makes the fibres of the meat dissolve in the gravy, so you bite into a thick pool of nutrition and powerful flavours.

A walk through Agra’s street food marvels would have been incomplete without some Bedai, so to get our fix, we reached Munna Lal Mithai Waala. The Bedai or Bedami Puri was served with aloo ki sabzi (potato curry), pumpkin gravy, and curd. The puri, stuffed with urad daal and made in desi ghee, was satisfyingly crispy. To go with it we had Moong Daal Halwa that washed my mouth with its overwhelming amounts of ghee.

Kala Mehal and its residing Sindhi community had waiting for us the Sindhi Pakwaan, which is a huge round matthi, served with chickpea gravy loaded with a strong doze of spices and masalas and topped with some fresh green chilli, red onions, and oil.

After our fix of the Sindhi cuisine, we headed to an archaic looking shop that has been serving its delicacy since 1840, Chimman Lal Puri Waale. Tahir called it Agra’s “Museum of Food”, because of how well it preserved the original flavours of the Tajnagari. For a mere amount of Rs. 30, they gave us a plate loaded with two puris, one of them stuffed with a methi or fenugreek filling, and small portions of potato-chickpea sabzi, sweet-tasting white pumpkin sabzi, aloo-matar-paneer sabzi, some chutney and achaar, and to wash everything down, bowls of kheer and raita. Every preparation had a distinct taste, perhaps unique to Agra and Banaras.

To end our breakfast tour, we arrived at Gopaldas Petha in Subhash Bazaar to try the much-coveted Agra ka Petha wrapped in the refreshing flavour of gulabjal. Petha was once known as the “dessert for the poor”, because of the inexpensive ingredients that go into its making, but the end result left me absolutely content. You can get this Petha for Rs. 300/kg at Gopaldas Petha.

 Agra truly served its culmination of communities, cultures, and history on the plate with just the right amount of sweet, spice, and warmth.

Edited By- Arshia Bhutani

 

 

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Imperial Spice, Connaught Place

Connaught Place has a rare privilege of having it all – locational, political and cultural advantages. These advantages lend themselves well to the circular market being a hot spot for attracting food and people from across the city, country and world. Imperial Spice is a fun new entrant to this historic market with its eclectic menu, warm lighting and obliging staff.

We started our meal with an amuse bouche – a tiny Masala Papad cone, which served its purpose of appetising us for the meal ahead. This was followed up by their signature starter – Black Stone Chaat – a platter of tangy and delicious preparations including Palak Patta Chaat, Chukandari Chenna Bhalla and Aaloo Chana.

Next came the Imperial Gin Chicken and the Twice Cooked Duck Spring Rolls. Being a proponent of duck and spring rolls separately, I had never had them together. They were juicy with a sweet tinge on the inside. The dish went well with the chicken which was spicy and soft.

Our mains included Spaghetti Alfredo with Grilled Chicken and Broccoli and the Pan Seared Norwegian Salmon Served with Pepperonata And Olive Caper Buerre Blanc. The Norwegian salmon was pink and buttery, complemented well by the veggies.

One of the more fascinating dishes on the menu was the Lehsun ki Kheer. It takes a fair amount of courage to try something so out of the ordinary as garlic in a sweet preparation. But it somehow worked. With a sprinkling of dry fruits, it would be perfect. Other such different pairings of sweet treats in the menu would be worth giving a shot in the future.

 

Cost for Two: Rs. 2,200 (without alcohol)

Location: M Block, Connaught Place, New Delhi

 

 

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U Like Roll Corner : A Tale of Rolls

Long ago in the year 1996 there lived a humble man namely Mr. Jamil Akhtar, who had a sense that something is missing from the northern region of the foodie capital city. Soon he realised that no eatery around this area sold rolls (a small piece of bread that is rolled around a stuffing ). He took this matter into his hands and inaugurated his very own ‘U-Like Roll Corner ‘ in a small street in the Kamla Nagar market,North Delhi which served a vast variety of rolls ranging from different varieties in both vegetarian and non vegetarian options.

The taste of his tidbits along with the thinnest covering of roti and lots and lots of filling coordinated with a perfect blend of various sauces which drips through your lips while you take a bite of the mouthwatering rolls was what attracted the most crowd to hog into this world of rolls which is still consistent. Whoever visits this place never fails to notice the technique which Mr. Jamil uses to make his rolls, the dedication, the skills , the fluency he showcases while preparing his masterpiece is remarkable!

The stall opens in the afternoon around three and closes till eleven in the night with most of its rush hour being around the nighttime. Pure desi ghee is used in preparing the rolls in the perfect quantity so that the rolls doesn’t turn out to be greasy. As soon as the stall opens the rolls especially the non vegetarian ones sell out like hot cakes.The nonveg specialty items include spicy chicken roll , cheesy chicken roll , egg rolls and various other combinations. The prices of these ranges from rupees 25 to maximum of rupees 90.

The tale of rolls which began in 1996 still satiates your hungry taste buds with the crispy and juicy rolls which will continue its era happily ever after.

Name: U-Like Roll Center

Address: Kamla Nagar Market, Beside Keventer’s

Owner’s Name  : Jamil Akhtar

Contact number: 8800376692

 

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Bun Tikki Wale Bhaiya : IPCW ki shaan

Indraprastha College for Women in one of the oldest college of Delhi University situated in the North Campus near the Civil Lines metro station. With  quite a beautiful campus and very welcoming ambience, there is another thing about this college which is the usual ‘ talk of the town ‘ that is the ‘Bun Tikki‘ stall that resides just outside the college gate in a small corner with the most concentration of people. The traces of this stall goes back to  the post independence era around the 1950’s . The current owner of this stall Mr. Ram Dev  proudly claims this stall to be even older than half a century and how this tradition is carried on from his father to him and how it will be carried on to to the next generation very soon.

The stall opens early in the morning around 9:00 am  and serves its delicacies till 4 in the evening. The menu is not very vast but it shows perfectly what this eatery specializes in. The menu includes the most talked about ‘Bun Tikki‘ along with other tidbits such as aloo chaat , chole kulche , bhel puri , papdi chaat and kulcha roll which is perfectly complimented by a popular go-to of each and every Dilliwala known as Bunta which is perfect to quench your thirst along with the sweet and spicy bites this small eatery serves.

This place experiences the most rush during the break time in the afternoon when all the hungry peeps including the students of the college and even the teacher staff are in a search for something delicious to fulfil their hungry tummies and the rush is sometimes even more than that of the college canteen itself . The hot piping tikki  sandwiched between the perfectly buttered buns along with the tangy sweet chutney and a perfect seasoning of various spices makes it just irresistible as it sounds. Another most loved dish here is the aaloo chaat which is made from perfectly shallow fried potato cubes seasoned with the spice mix and topped with the spicy green chutney which we can customize according to our preferences by consulting our very own taste buds.

Mr. Ram Dev is very particular about the hygiene of the stall and keeps it as clean as possible, he particularly mentions about how he uses the fresh ingredients  to make these mouth watering snacks. What makes this eatery even better is the price of the items, none of them are above a range of Rupees 30 . Such flavoursome and zestful snacks at such low costs with maintained hygiene ! What else do we need ?

Address : Beside the main gate of IPCW, Civil Lines

Owner’s Name : Ram Dev

Contact no. : 9319533687

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Sudama Ji Ki Tea Stall : One stop for all the chai lovers

Feeling cold ? have chai (tea) . Want to have a important conversation ? Meet up at chai. After all , who says chai cannot be the solution to your every problem. Chai is the most loved beverage among India and the love indeed doubles when it comes to Delhiites. One such place which was established around 30 years ago by a very humble man popularly known as ‘Sudama ji ‘ by his fellow customers , is “Sudama ji ki Tea Stall” which is located right on the main road from Kirori Mal College to Ramjas College. At any mentioned time of the day you will see people flooded on this tea stall, there doesn’t exist a single person in the North Campus who doesn’t know about this stall. Once you name it and people will tell you the exact spot where it is located at. Sudama ji serves his special tea at as low as Rupees 10. You can taste the flavor of ginger, cinnamon and cardamom in the masala chai  he offers.

The best time to visit this place is the late evening hours especially during the winter nights, you will see every person including the cops patrolling around the area  to the students living in the campus to the staff and even the fellow rickshaw and auto drivers breeding around the stall waiting for their chance to get a glass full of the ‘most talked about ‘ chai  of the campus. This stall stays open until late night with never ending rush for chai which can always be seen boiling down in big vessels by Sudama ji with a lot of passion to make his chai perfect for his customers.

You can also have some rusks , biscuits to accompany the perfect cup of tea even to make it more perfect. While crossing through the university you will always listen people mentioning this tea stall and especially students quoting it very often. So, if you are on a search of a perfect cup of ‘garma garam chai’  along with a swarm of people who are equally passionate and  in love with chai as you are or else need a perfect kick start to your day or want a much needed break then surely this is the place you are searching for.

Name : Sudama ji ki tea stall

Owner’s name : Sudama ji

Address: On the main road between KMC and Ramjas

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Labib’s : The crowded nukkad

Roaming around north campus with a hungry tummy and confused state of mind ?  In this situation enter the very famous   “ Chatori lane” which is a small street in Kamla Nagar beside Mc Donald’s in which you will capture the sight of food in every direction you look at. This street ends with a very famous nukkad food joint  known as “ Labib’s”, it can be seen from quite a distance that this place is very crowded all the time. The first thing any person who visits this place observes is a very long menu with numerous options ranging from various kinds of shakes, rolls and sandwiches etc. This place serves both vegetarian and non vegetarian delicacies.

It is very famous among the college students due to the pocket friendly menu, who can be seen mushrooming on the stairs nearby this joint with the amazing food this place serves. This place is famous for its shakes, black forest shake is a must try and even they serve the best ice mocha. You can even have the rolls including the shawarma roll and the double egg roll. They also  have a best seller called the “chicken chatkara sandwich” which is as delicious as it sounds. This shop generally opens around 12 pm and closes late around 10 pm with its rush hour being mainly in the evening.

They offer their food accompanied with great dips such as the cheesy dip and if you are new to this place they offer your first mayonnaise dip for free. Even the service is quick and the owner is very friendly too. So, if you are looking for somewhere great to eat with numerous options and pocket friendly budget, this place is exactly what you are searching for. So, don’t forget to  visit this place and grab a lip smacking  snack along with a gulp of thick and cold shake and have a very happy meal and leave this place with a satisfactory grin and eagerness to visit it again.

Name: Labib’s

Address : UB-101, Chatori Lane , Kamla Nagar

Contact number : +91999432924

 

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Zayekon ka Kazbaa

The street food in East Delhi has really come off age, and taking the streets of Krishna Nagar by storm is a place called Desi Kazbaa. The shop opened recently and has attracted the attention of all locals for its wide variety of food. Starting from Shawarma and Momos to full-fledged Chinese and Indian meals, they have it all; and they even serve a variety of different styles of Maggi. Now how can you not love this place!

The variety of food offered here, is the highlight. They have at least 11 different flavours for Maggi as well as Momos, such as Chicken Tandoori Maggi, Butter Maggi or Chilli Paneer Momos, Butter Chicken Momos,etc., and that is a lot! But it is the flavour and the effort behind the scenes that makes their food supremely delicious and leaves one craving for more…

There is a lot more to here, than just Momos and Maggi. Say if you’re hungry for burgers, don’t look for the next Mcdonalds because Desi Kazbaa not just serves some amazing and unique Burgers, they also have a number of different Sandwiches, an array of Fries served in distinctive sauces, Garlic Breads, Pastas, Chicken Nuggets and so much more. Along with all that food the drinks served here are also top notch. Their Kazbaa Special Bad Boy Shake- A mixture of Kit Kat, Oreo, 5 Star and Chocolate, is quite popular amongst locals and why wouldn’t it be, because something that looks this good will definitely taste better.

Desi Kazbaa has left no stone unturned when it comes to variety. There is a dish here for every picky eater in your group of friends. The range of food in this little food joint is enormous, not to forget the food they serve is scrumptious. So if you want to taste some of these amazing dishes, mark the date in your calendars for the NBT Flavour Fest on 20th and 21st October’18, at Baba Kharak Singh Marg.

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Flavour Bombs Of Bengal

It’s Durga Puja Season, and no better way to start this auspicious journey than with PUCHKA. Us Dilliwalas, are obsessed with chaat; the sweet, savoury, spicy and tangy flavours that just burst in your mouth. Puchka, the Bengali cousin of Gol-gappe or Pani Puri, is a must-have whether it is festive season or not.

So, we made our way to C. R. Park for the authentic Puchka experience and found ourselves at a little stall called Raju Puchkawala. The 20 year old shop serves some of the tastiest chaat in the area. The Puchkas are made of wheat unlike gol-gappas that are usually made of suji. It is filled with a mixture of mashed potatoes, various spices, coriander and chickpeas, and then you can choose between khatta paani or meetha paani. Even the “paani” for puchkas has a tamarind base contrary to Jal Jeera which has a mint base. This may sound like any other pani puri to you, but wait till you taste it. The flavour combinations are so on point, that there is no way that you wouldn’t go back for at least one more plate. These Puchkas are like flavour bombs, just one puchka packs quite a punch.

Now, if you think Puchka is all this place has to offer, you are highly mistaken. Another crowd favourite is Churmur. As the name suggests, churmur is a mixture of a few tid-bits that are mixed together to make this Amazing dish. They add boiled potatoes, chickpeas, a combination of spices and some puchka water, along with some crushed Papri- All this is mixed together and voila, your churmur is ready. The Aloo Kabli served here is truly unique. Instead of frying the potatoes and drowning them in spices and green chilli chutney like the usual Aloo Chaat, here they use boiled potatoes that are topped with onions, green chillies, spices, chickpeas and tamarind water; this combination has a surprisingly refreshing taste that is quite different to the super spicy Aloo Chaat that we Dilliwalas are used to. 

Experience bengali culture in the streets of Delhi. And if you can’t make it to C.R. Park for this lovely chaat just mark the dates 20th and 21st October’18 for the NBT Flavors Fest at Baba Kharak Singh Marg, and discover street delicacies from all over India or you can just chow down on these mouth-watering (literally) Puchkas, and call it a day!

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Ek Pyaali ‘Tandoori Chai’ dila do

One word, a thousand emotions. Chai. A cup of Chai is perhaps the most indispensable item in the Indian kitchen. It binds together the household like nothing else.
It is not uncommon to see a hot brewing cup calm a rather heated conversation or how easily conversations flow over cups of Chai. Perhaps that’s the magic of this drink.
Chai or tea leaves are cultivated extensively in our country and every state offers a very unqiue type of chai. Like its sourcing, it also has a variety of preparation styles. An insanely different style is the one I shall elaborate on. It’s the Tandoori chai.
‘Alpha’ss Tandoori Chai’ in Mukherjee Nagar seems to be the talk around town for introducing an innovative yet extremely tasty version of this staple household favorite. Open from 9 in the morning till late in the evening (11 PM), the shop is happily satisfying the caffeine cravings of its many customers.
The roots of this unconventional idea of having chai being made in a tandoor stemmed from a rather everyday conversation between friends. They wondered that if something like the popular street food-momos could be made in a tandoori style,then why not the beloved Chai?


The name of the shop is unique as proclaimed by one of the shop owners. It is an acronym for the names of all the people who started the shop.
The Kulhad, a traditional earthen pot is a popular dish used to serve Chai. The process involves baking this dish in the Tandoor and pouring half cooked Chai in this. The hot Kulhad then diffuses a rather smokey tinge to the Chai and this is how this beverage gets it’s unique taste. Although the shop is in it’s nascent stages,it has been getting a great amount of recognition and has already established a broad base of loyal customers.

What makes this a must visit stall while exploring the food scene in Delhi?
A. It is the only place in Delhi that serves this sort of preparation B. the theatrics of making this chai. It’s an experience in itself to witness its creation and lastly, and perhaps the most obvious one,its chai!

So come and enjoy this extraordinary Chai at the NBT Flavors Fest on 20th and 21st October’18, at Baba Kharak Singh Marg, Delhi.

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Tom Uncle Maggi : DU’s official canteen

Delhi University especially the north campus is known to have numerous hangout hubs as well as it is known to be flooded with many street food joints. North campus is a go to point for the students looking for a hot meals after or in between lectures. One such quick snack tops every DU student’s eat list and that is ‘Maggi’. No matter how many rows of maggi stalls are installed in the campus, ‘Tom Uncle’s Maggi Point’ is still the best and most visited maggi point in the campus. It is situated in the crossing between Daulat Ram College and Ramjas College. It is a very famous hotspot which is always surrounded by our very own DU students. The history of this maggi point goes a couple of decades back. No matter if you are a current student or an old graduate from Delhi University you will always remember this place by heart.

This place serves almost 60 varieties of maggi which has options for every taste preferences. It has a vast variety for cheese lovers such as cheese butter maggi, cheese onion maggi and many more. It also has some of the healthy options such as oats vegetable maggi , atta vegetable maggi and even some with the Chinese twists too. The huge varieties of the maggi is enough to burn your brain out of confusion about which ne to choose and to add upon it, this place not only just offers maggi but also many more dishes such as pasta , sandwich , macroni and even  bhelpuri , sevpuri and moreover  to accompany these dishes we have our all time favourite mojitos, milkshakes and sodas.

The top recommended maggi variations are cheese masala maggi , oregano maggi and chilli pepper cheese maggi. This maggi point was initially started by ‘Mr. Ramesh Kumar’ in 1978 as a small stall which then grew into a double outlet shop which has its other outlet in vijay nagar near Hudson lane. The picture of the initial stall along with Mr. Ramesh Kumar aka Tom Uncle can be seen on the outlet’s menu. The service that started decades ago stil never fails to make every person which visits here happy wether it be in terms of varieties, taste , price , service, vibe or any criteria which makes a street food joint special.

Name: Tom Uncle’s Maggi point

Owner’s Name : Sunil Kataria

Contact number: 9540230404

Address:  Delhi University North Campus, infront of Daulat Ram College.