Delhi 6 se 19
Street food festival at Singh Sahib, Eros Hotel
By Anubhav Sapra
Singh Sahib at The Eros Hotel is one of the few five star restaurants in Delhi which has a loyal fan following. I visited the hotel on a weekday and the restaurant was bustling with patrons. I got to know there that the restaurant is hosting a Street Food Festival by the name of Delhi 6 se Delhi 19. The name signifies the food it intends on celebrating : The old Delhi street food which covers the areas of Delhi 6 (Delhi 6 being the postal code of Old Delhi) and Delhi 19 (Delhi 19 being the postal code of Nehru Place).
To exhibit the flavors unique to the old Delhi street food palate, live counters of the dishes have been put up in the ongoing festival. On offer are the popular street food dishes – golgappe, chaat, desi drinks, sweets, kebabs, omelets, biryani and quintessential chhole bhature. The dishes are being served on disposable plates to provide an authentic experience of eating out in the streets.
I began with aloo tikki and papdi chaat. Both of these dishes were made with the right interplay of spices and served with saunth and dhaniya chutney. Next from the chaat counter, I had golgappas which were served with pudina ka paani (mint flavoured water) and saunth.
After trying small portions of chole bhature, rajma chawal and kadi chawal, my carnivorous drive got me straight to the kebabs and biryani counter though the first iem I tried was egg bhurji. The biryani looked distinct, different from the regular mirch masala biryani which we get on the streets of Jama Masjid. The other mutton biryani was surpassed by any other that I have had. It had tender pieces of meat, cooked in basmati rice which was mildly flavoured.
A lot of effort has gone in to conceptualizing the street food festival; as the presence of a variety of snacks and sweets are ensured. from the Halwai counter. The sweets on offer are balushahi, milk cake, besan laddu, burfi, jalebi, and halwa parantha. I was surprised to see parantha being served with sooji ka halwa. This shows that the Chef has really travelled to the interiors of Old Delhi to bring out the best of the dishes. Halwa and parantha is a popular delicacy in Nizamuddin and Jama Masjid. I have seen evenings in Chitli Qabar, when Halwa Parantha walas on pushcarts cut paranthas into small pieces and serve halwa on them. Although the halwa was a bit sweet for me, I really enjoyed Jalebis which were thin, crisp and slightly flavoured with saffron.
My street food journey ended with a rabri kulfi stick. Indeed, it appeared to be a good attempt to showcase the variety of street delicacies under one roof. The festival is on till 6th August and priced at Rs 1650/- per person without taxes.