‘CHAT’-TING ALL DAY!
You will not even have to exit the Chawri Bazar metro station and the heady aroma of the dahi – bhalle, papdi and saunth would be there already in your nostrils. It is so overwhelming that it will attract you and you would be left with no option but to join all the people savouring the sweet and sour gol gappe and papdi chat. . Yes! I am talking about the much talked of Ashok Chat Bhandar right outside the Chawri Bazar metro station exit ( Chitli Qabar side) which attracts more than 700 people daily.
The place is almost 70 years old and continues to be one of the favourites among dilliwalas. Though they don’t have a very large menu to choose from, but there are just more than enough options for your tummy! Owned by Mr. Padam Singh, this small chat corner is one of the most successfully run outlet in Old Delhi and being right outside the metro station, its clientele has drastically gone up during the past many years.
Kalmi vada chaat and aloo masala are the most popular snacks served here and the other options available include dahi bhalle, papdi chat, aloo masala, masaledar pani pakodi, kalmi bada chat and gol gappas (with various stuffings). The menu is quite different from the regular chat corners and this makes Ashok Chaat Corner a distinct one among hundreds of Chaatwalas in old Delhi. The prices are not very high and worth the taste.
I had wanted to try the aloo masala and the masaledaar pani pakodi, but it was already finished due to their popularity among the people. Instead, I tried the kalmi vada chat with papdi. Kalmi vada is a dark brown flat pakoda like thing made of chana daal, gram flour, coriander and other spices. A dough is made of the mixture and cut into small pieces and then the pieces are fried. This delicacy is enjoyed both with coriander chutney as well as part of the chat.
The spicy and crispy kalmi vada with curd and saunth was a flavoursome indulgence. The plate is quite filling and worth the price. The masala sprinkled on the top added to the delish essence. The Kalmi vada chaat would get a 7.5/10 from me. The gol gappas that I tried there were also a hit. The tangy and spicy water was the best part. The freshness of the water is still there in my mouth. I would rate them at 8/10.
Almost all the snacks are priced between Rs. 20-60. So the snacking at Ashok Chat Corner won’t burn a hole in your pocket.
There is another good thing about the place that all the things are home made. From the papris and kalmi vadas to the masala, everything is prepared at home by the owner and his family. He resides near his own shop so the transportation of the material is not problematic. All the things are freshly prepared, so you don’t have to worry about the food being stale.
So the next time you visit Nai Sarak to buy your books or stationery, don’t forget to pamper your taste buds with Ashok’s chat.
If you want to know anything further, kindly contact
Mr. Padam Singh – 9811467238
Address (shop) – 3488, Hauz Qazi Chowk, Delhi -110006.
Till then, happy burping! J
By Kashish ( Foodie Correspondent)
Photo Credit- Piyush Nagpal
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