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Angooor, Fine Dining- Punjabi Bagh

With a lot of cafes and eating joints in West Delhi, new entrant Angooor on Punjabi Bagh, Club road is a visual treat with beautiful decor and offers some decent food to indulge in.

   

It has three seating sections one on the inside with the bar, the other just attached to it and the last in the open making it a spacious place. The outdoor seating is dreamy and makes it an outstanding place for dining with greenery all around and white pebble flooring. In terms of hospitality, the staff is polite and attends to you well be it giving suggestions or handling complaints.

We ordered a few dishes and tried the Black olive chicken and Crispy chilly potatoes for starters. The Black Olive Chicken turned out to be our favourite as it had strong flavour of olives. The chicken was juicy and tender making it a perfect starter for every olive and chicken lover. We relished it and with every bite we wanted to eat more. Now coming to the chilly potatoes, they were crispy and had a very well-balanced flavour. For the main course we went in for AOP Penne Pasta which was made in olive oil. It had lots of sundried tomatoes and small chunks of garlic. If you are bored of eating the regular white sauce or red sauce pasta then we surely recommend this! Last but not the least, we had to end our meal on a sweet note and so we ordered Motichoor Rabri Parfait- a fusion dessert. It was more like crumbled Motichoor Ladoo with Rabri topped with a lot of dry fruits.

Black olive chicken with dip
AOP Penne Pasta
Motichoor Rabri Parfait

If you are looking out for a new place to hangout with good ambience, nice food, foot tapping music then do give Angooor a try! Continue reading Angooor, Fine Dining- Punjabi Bagh

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A DAY OUT IN FAGU, SHIMLA

 

 

Fagu, a picturesque village in the district of Shimla is a perfect getaway for the nature lovers who enjoy verdant and misty hills, uneven valleys and tranquil views. This little gem instantly attracts you to its lap. We were visiting this stunning village for a day and were eager to explore the culture and food here. At Fagu we had stay put at this beautiful camp called Camp Nomad. The team at here was all set to give us a taste of the authentic local experience through different activities. So it’s here at the we got to taste the authentic local spread prepared by this amazing lady Yogi ji and her enthusiastic team. So come and join us for this cultural and culinary joyride at Fagu.

Before sitting down to eat the elaborate lunch we went to the kitchen space to oversee the local meal preparation. It was a totally busy work space. Here we spoke to the chefs from the village who were supervising the whole process. They told us about the different traditional delicacies with great eagerness.

Then it was time to check out the preparation of some of the dishes from the menu. First was the Siddu the quintessential bread from Himachal Pradesh. This traditional stuffed bread with sweet or savoury stuffings is made from leavened whole wheat flour dough. Yogi ji informed us that traditionally, in the making of Siddu, a small portion of 2 to 3 days old fermented dough was used. This helped in the fermentation of the dough-a very essential step. But now a days they use yeast for the process. These dough balls were steamed in a steamer. They are either eaten with ghee or with different curries and dal. One thing that we tried for the first time was the Bhang ke pakode had a distinctive flavour to it.

A scrumptious spread of local delicacies.

 

At lunchtime we all came together to eat the scrumptious meal prepared by Yogi ji and team. It included Rajma ki Sabzi, Meethi dal, Kadhi pakode, Lushke, Bhang ke pakode, sepu vadi, channe ka khatta, siddu etc. After that hearty meal we all gathered for Nati-Himachali folk Dance- dance performance with all the visitors and the locals who were present at the camp. It was a joyous experience to match steps to the melodious rendition of a local song.

After all the fun activities, we went out to explore the hamlet with our vivacious host Yogi ji. First we went to Desu Mata temple where we spent some time with the genial head priest and learnt about the history of the temple. From there we went to meet the legendary mountaineer and technical advisor, Sri Baldev ji who have scaled the Everest and had assisted many expeditions.

After exploring the neighbourhood of Fagu with Yogi ji, we returned to the camp and got ready for the dinner. Yogi ji whipped up a simple local meal of Lushke and Lingdu, a side dish made with Fiddlehead greens. After the elaborate lunch this humble dinner was truly satisfying.

We are truly grateful to all our amazing hosts- Savitoj, Yogi Ji and the team at Camp Nomad for such a wonderful experience at Fagu.

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BEST PLACES TO EAT IN SHIMLA

From Kasauli we drove to Shimla in search of local and popular delicacies. This picture perfect hill station fascinates each and every visitor with its terrific outdoors and unique charm interspersed with elements from colonial times. The capital city is always buzzing with tourists as here, one finds, panoramic views of the snow clad Himalayas, tiny paths along the pine forests, Elizabethan-style architecture and a delectable food culture, all of which together make it resemble a dreamy settings. 

 

The only and the best way to explore the central part of the city is by walking through the winding paths and stairs leading uphill and downhill. In this delightful gastronomic journey across this pretty town, we were joined by our awesome host Savitoj who walked us through the food scene enthralling us with historical references and tales.

 

Our first stop was the Indian Coffee House whose old world charm takes you back in time and gives you a taste of a bygone era. Here we tried the coffee, jam toast and Sambar Vada. The food and beverage both were decent but it was the ambience that made it special.

 

Next we tried an amazing hot Gulab Jamun from the iconic snack shop Baljees, a local favourite stop for quick snacks. After this we went to Sharma Chaat to taste their unique Parati Kulcha. This spicy and savoury dish is a must try delicacy in Shimla. 

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During our food explorations at Shimla we tried a local favourite Punjabi delicacy called the Parati Kulcha or Bheega Kulcha from Sharma Chat. It is essentially Kulcha soaked in a spicy but yummy Chana gravy and topped with curd, onions, chutney and fried potato chunks. The Kulcha was soft and juicy as it had soaked up the flavoursome gravy. As we put a spoonful into our mouth, we couldn't help but wonder at the surreal experience of the Kulcha melting away instantly, making way for all other elements in the dish. A must try things in Shimla if you love spicy and savoury stuffs that has a playful attraction to it. #himachalfoodseriesbydfw #himchalpradesh #himachalfoodseries #himachalpradeshtourism #walkwithdelhifoodwalks #walkwithanubhav #paratikulcha #shimla #shimlastreets #bheegakulcha #kulcha

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From there we went to Vijay Sweets to have tea along with some of their very famous tea time snacks. The assortment of sweet and savoury snacks was quite interesting, especially the Toshe. 

 

Then we tried the Spoonie from the renowned Trishool Bakery. The place was full of fresh bakery products and eager customers. At last we went on to try the traditional feast from Himachal Pradesh known as the Dham, that is served at all special functions. It’s was a hearty and nutritious platter consisting of the choicest delicacies from across the state. We tried the Madiyali Dham-native to the Mandi district- at a restaurant named Himachali Rasoi. It was indeed a scrumptious spread whose star dish was the Rajma Ka Madra.

 

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Dham refers to the traditional vegetarian feast in Himachal Pradesh, that's prepared during marriages, local festivals, and special occasions. It is a nutritious meal that is backed by the principles of Ayurveda. The native dishes include Rajma Madra, Kadhi, Khatta, sepu badi and so forth. The Dham manifests the treasure trove of food heritage in the state. It also brings the whole community closer as people sit down together to enjoy the elaborate meal. Dham differs from region to region and so you have the Kangra dham, Mandi or Mandyali Dham, Chamba Dham etc. where the ingredients and the dishes also vary from each other. In the picture we have the Mandiyali Dham that we tried at Himachal Rasoi in Shimla. It was simple, balanced and truly delicious. The star of the platter was the rich and robust Rajma ka Madra. It's a must try thing in Himachal Pradesh. #foodie #instafood #foodphotography #photooftheday #travelpic #exploringfood #himachalfoodseriesbydfw #himchalpradesh #himachalfoodseries #himachalpradeshtourism #walkwithdelhifoodwalks #walkwithanubhav #shimla #shimlastreets #himachalidham #shimladiaries

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After exploring the local food scene at The Mall Road and the Middle bazaar, we descended to the Lower bazaar to try some of the popular local delicacies. With crowded lanes lined with shops selling everything from wooden items, winter clothes to mobile phones and vegetables, this buzzing marketplace, is the main shopping destination for the visitors, locals and villagers.

 

Here at Lower Bazaar, one can buy affordable and inexpensive daily products for it was meant to cater to the needs of the common public. It also has a delightful vegetable market full of fresh fruits and veggies. The street food culture here is a mix of traditional delicacies and popular fast food influences. 

 

We began our journey from the sabzi mandi or the vegetable market. The crowded narrow lanes were lined with shops selling fragrant fruits and fresh vegetables. Here we spotted the lingdu or the Fiddlehead greens, a quintessentially local vegetable-essentially a fern- that is commonly consumed in this region.

 

We then arrived at the 117 years old sweet shop Meher Chand and Bros which is still one of the most sought after sweet shops in Shimla. Here we tried three different sweetmeats- cream chocolate(milk burfi with no trace of chocolate), panjiri ladoo and meshu-that were pretty good. We also picked up some historical anecdotes about the place from the owner.

 

After the pure ghee stuff it was time to savour some lip smacking pickles and preserves from another legendary place known as Thakur Bhrata. This shop too is nearly a decade old establishment that is coveted for its traditionally prepared pickles and sweet preserves made with good quality ingredients. We tried four things of which the Amla and Gajar ka Murabba were simple yet phenomenal.

 

From there we went to our next stop Drigen Chinese Fast Food Corner, an inconspicuous veg eatery that is immensely popular with the young crowd here. We had delicious momos and an interesting go to snacks called Kurkej which was essentially super tasty fried veggie sticks. 

 

Next was the turn of veg hotdog from a small roadside stall. It was the yummy chutney and the well made potato patties that made it a tasty treat.

 

Our final stop of our culinary sojourn in and around  Lower Bazaar was the Kamala Nehru Hospital premises. We were there to experience and support the exceptional langar service run by the charitable organisation Almighty Blessings. They serve free meals in the evening to all visitors. Savitoj informed us how the local communities like schools, restaurants etc contribute effectively in the functioning of this heartwarming initiative. We also visited the kitchen, took part in the service and at the end relish the simple meal of rice, dal and roti. Its was a surreal feeling to learn about this selfless endeavours of kindness and compassion. The food was superlative as it was served with such love and care.

 

In the last leg of our Shimla Food Tour we were out to explore few more popular and toothsome options both on the streets and at few sought after places. 

 

We started with a visit to a very special cafe called the Book Cafe which was nestled amidst the tranquil, cosy and picturesque backdrop of huge trees and misty mountains. Conceptualized by the Himachal Pradesh prison department, this cafe cum library is run by inmates of the Kaithu Jail, Shimla who are serving their life sentences. It is an ideal destination for all visitors who love to spend time with books in the lap of nature while sipping coffee or eating the bakery fares prepared and served by the friendly and efficient inmates. You might also engage in a conversation with them and discover more about their lives and experiences.

 

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On the concluding day of our Shimla food trail, we visited a very special cafe called the Book Cafe which was nestled amidst the tranquil, cosy and picturesque backdrop of huge trees and misty mountains. Conceptualised by the Himachal Pradesh prison department, this cafe cum library is run by inmates of the Kaithu Jail, Shimla who are serving their life sentence. It is an ideal destination for all visitors who love to spend time with books in the lap of nature while sipping coffee or eating the bakery fares prepared and served by the friendly inmates. Do make time to visit this place in order to learn and support this innovative rehabilitation programme for convicts, that intends to provide livelihood options to the inmates who have maintained a remarkable conduct in a stipulated span of their sentence. The staff here is very cordial and efficient. You might also engage in a conversation with them and discover more about their lives and experiences. #foodie #instafood #foodphotography #photooftheday #travelpic #exploringfood #himachalfoodseriesbydfw #himchalpradesh #himachalfoodseries #himachalpradeshtourism #walkwithdelhifoodwalks #walkwithanubhav #shimla #shimlastreets #bookcafeshimla

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Do make time to visit this place in order to learn more  and support this innovative rehabilitation programme for convicts, that intends to provide livelihood options to the inmates who have maintained a remarkable conduct in a stipulated span of their sentence. 

 

From there we reached the most popular ice cream joint in the town, The Embassy Ice cream. Savitoj introduced us to this place whose chocobars and mango duds were the best chilled treats that he has grown up eating. The raspberry ice cream comprising of a smooth vanilla ice cream base topped with raspberry crush was yummy and delightful.

 

Next we walked up to a person selling fried peanuts and chana right under the cool shade of a huge tree. We were surprised to know that he has been selling this playful snack in paper cones for the past 43 years. As we gleefully munched on the crispy, crunchy and spice mixed peanuts right out of the paper cones, Savitoj shared his memories of getting them just for rupees two while returning home from school. 

 

After the nostalgic treat and pleasant interaction with a lively little girl occupied with her bubble making toy, Savitoj took us to Sita Ram and Sons, one of the most iconic eateries in Shimla, whose Lucchi Chana is hugely popular with visitors and locals alike. The plateful of thin yet spongy Lucchi or Bhatura and a distinctly flavourful chana topped with chutney was indeed delicious. No wonder it’s a place that you must definitely try in Shimla.

 

Next was the turn of the Cheese Kulcha. We quite liked this cheesy twist to the popular chana kulcha where the bun like kulcha was stuffed with cheese slice and chana mixture and topped with mayo. It’s an easy to grab stuff to check the hunger pangs while walking.

 

The next destination that Savitoj fondly took us to for a unique fusion experience was an unassuming yet popular joint serving the Chinese Paratha. This deep fried paratha, somewhat resembling a pie in appearance and fried momo in taste, was stuffed with a delicious momo fillings and noodles. It was crisp from outside and soft inside. 

 

Our penultimate destination was the Ashiana restaurant. The ambience was amazing and so was food. We tried two popular Himachali non veg dishes, Chaa Meat and Anardana Chicken, along with the Himachali veg speciality Chane Ka Madra. All the three delicacies were delectably tangy because of the sour elements like curd and anardana. We thoroughly enjoyed the spread. You can try this place for traditional cuisine.

 

Our culinary trail ended with chocolate and strawberry pan from Guru Pan. It wasn’t very appealing as the taste of the paan was completely overpowered by the sweetness and the chocolate and strawberry flavours.

 

With this our Shimla Food Tour came to end. We are truly grateful for the enlightening company of our genial host Savijot Singh.

 

Video Links for the Shimla Food Tour:

 

Shimla Food Walk Part 1 

 

Shimla Food Walk Part 2

 

 

Shimla Food Walk Part 3