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Bhaijaan Kebabs

Bhaijaan Kebabs

By Anubhav Sapra

Last Sunday, Delhi Food Walks conducted its first community food walk of 2015 – the Kebab and Biryani Trail in Old Delhi. The food walk started with galouti kebabs and ended with the famous sutli kebabs of Bazar Matia Mahal. The highlight of the kebab trail was Bhaijaan Kebabs. The name of the shop itself will arouse the curiosity of anyone visiting the shop. When I first visited the shop, I was expecting a well-built, husky fan of the Bollywood star Salman Khan. However, I met the rather gracious owner, Mohd. Shamim, who started selling kebabs three years back just out of his passion and love for kebabs. The shop is run by his son, Ubaid, and his cousins, Javed and Ameen.

WP_20150110_18_43_17_ProLet me tell you the location and directions to reach his shop. Keep walking straight in Bazar Matia Mahal until you reach Chitli Qabar Chowk, then take a right turn from there, and ask anyone the directions to the famous Flora Bakery. Bhaijaan Kebabs are right opposite Flora Bakery. The complete address is shop no. 2202, Bazar Chitli Qabar, Opp. Flora Bakery, Delhi-6. The shop is closed on Tuesdays. You can contact Bhaijaan Kebabs on the following numbers – 9811020272, 9899145777.

The shop is named Bhaijaan (literally, brother) Kebabs because the age difference among the siblings in Mohd. Shamim’s family was not much and everyone in the family started calling him “bhaijaan”. Bhaijaan, originally a contractor for painting work, used to invite his family and friends for daawat back at home. His kebabs were so delectable that the guests who tasted his kebabs in dawaats convinced him to take his passion of cooking to the next level and open a kebab shop. He opened a small shop selling chicken shami kebabs in a narrow alley in Chitli Qabar.

WP_20150110_18_31_22_ProAn interesting part of the most of food joints in Old Delhi is that they specialize in a particular dish and pass the recipes from one generation to the next without tweaking the recipes. Keeping alive the Old Delhi tradition, Bhaijaan Kebabs sells only one kind of kebabs – shami kebabs. The keema of shami kebabs are made with chane ki daal, dried red chillies, green chillies, and Bhaijaan’s secret spices. A piece of kebab costs Rs. 10 and a kg of keema for shami kebabs is Rs. 200. The kebabs are half fried and kept in a glass box. On order, the shami kebabs are deep fried, chaat masala is sprinkled over it, and is served with green chutney and onion in a dona. The kebabs are crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. The uniqueness of his kebabs are the fibres which one can experience in the first bite. The taste of the kebabs was delicious, and the spices and whole red chillies added to the interesting mix of flavours.

The kebab lovers moved in to another lane of Chitli Qabar for sutli kebabs after relishing the taste of Bhaijaan’s fibrous shami kebabs.

Anubhav Sapra is an avid foodie! He is a Founder but proudly calls himself a Foodie-in-chief at Delhi Food Walks. He is also a street-food and Indian regional cuisine connoisseur and loves to write about street-food.
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Mohd. Sageer Nahari Wale

                                                   Mohd. Sageer Nahari Wale

By Anubhav Sapra

The temperature of Delhi has further plummeted to a five year low at 4.2 degrees. There are expectations that the record of coldest December in 50 years might broke soon. Sometimes I wonder that the current generation is going to witness all the records. To keep warm, some prefer sipping a hot cup of tea with Samosa and few like me find solace in a plate of hot Nehari or haleem.

Although Nehari is traditionally cooked overnight and eaten as a breakfast, it is now easily available in the evenings as well. Infact, both the famous Nahari walas in Ballimaran – Manzoor Hotel and Mohd. Sageer Nahari wale sells the delicacy in the evenings.

WP_20141117_112Mohd. Sageer Nahari Wale, a 67 years old shop, located in Baradari, Ballimaran, shop number 2461 and 2462. A half plate buff nahari costs Rs 60. A plate of Bheja is Rs 50 and Nalli is Rs 30. Typically Nahari is made of trotters or knuckles or goat’s head, and known as Paye ki Nehari. However, to cater to the modern taste, different varieties are available. Many still prefer mixing a proportionate quantity of Nalli and bheja in Nahari.

The preparations for Nahari at Mohd Sageer’s shop starts everyday at 8 am in the morning and by 6 pm , Nahari is ready to be served. In the day time, between 12 noon to 3 pm, korma and kofta is available at Rs 20 a plate. I straightaway ordered a half plate of Nahari. I got it fried in yellow Amul butter, garnished it with finely cut ginger slices and green chillies. And on the top of thick gravy, evenly squeezed the lemon juice. The meat was tender after hours of cooking and the aroma of spices was intact. The yellow butter with a tinge of lemon mellowed down the spices but added a nice flavor to the nahari and made it simply delicious.

I cleaned up the plate of Sageer’s Nahari without worrying about the forecast made by IMD about the cold spell that is likely to continue over the week as it is believed the remedy for cold.

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Anubhav Sapra is an avid foodie! He is a Founder but proudly calls himself a Foodie-in-chief at Delhi Food Walks. He is also a street-food and Indian regional cuisine connoisseur and loves to write about street-food.
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Yahya Tea Stall

Yahya Tea Stall

Everyone always ignores the small tea stall on the side of the road or at the corner of a street. No one knows the history behind a small tea stall. Even Shah Rukh Khan’s father had a tea stall and served tea at a very well known drama company in Delhi, and if it was not for the star, we would probably never have known that such a tea stall existed.

WP_20141117_037Likewise, there is an old tea stall in the lane of Gali Qasmijan, right at the entrance of Phatak Luharu in Ballimaran. This tea stall was started by the late Haji Mohammed Farooq in 1969, carried on by his son the late Mohammed Yahya. It has been forty-five years since the pouring and serving of tea has been going on here. Now, the grandchildren, Mr. Farhan and Mr. Faizan, who are reporters with a newspaper, are still taking care of their family business. Their father, the late Mohammed Yahya, also owned a dairy shop named after his wife, Sabra and a hotel where the tea famously known as “Haji ki Chai” was served. Since the grandchildren did not have the same aspirations as their father, they gave up the place for rent and but have still kept the touch and name of their father through the tea stall.

When I looked at the boys preparing the tea, I was completely amazed at how it was being prepared. It was nothing like the way we prepare it at home.

WP_20141117_049The tea leaves are boiled in water in an aluminum kettle for a long time and on the other side, the milk is kept boiling, letting it form a layer of cream, commonly known as malai. The first step is to put a spoonful of sugar, a teaspoon of milk and boiled tea, and a spoon of malai. It is then stirred well and served hot. If you desire for a strong cup of tea, they add a spoon of fresh tea leaves, while pouring the boiled tea, in the strainer to give it that dark look and a strong kick. Mostly it would look like filtered tea that is served at a fancy tea shop.

There is a lively history behind this tea stall. Believe it or not a hundred and fifty cups of tea were made and served at a time which impressed me so much since there are so many different steps to get a perfect cup of tea. It definitely did not taste like the regular tea that one drinks every morning.

Nearby the tea stall, there was once a college named Tibbia College which has been shifted to Karol Bagh. This college offers education in medicine, and therefore, numerous and frequent doctors, professors, and students would be attending this college. Now a morning without a tea would not be complete and Yahya Tea Stall completed the mornings of a lot of people in the college and around. Tibbia College ordered six hundred teas almost every day, and without fail they were served with the same quality and standard.

WP_20141117_041For a couple of days, the tea stall had been shut down but by popular demand of the people living there and expressing their love for the tea and the family, the stall was back with a bang, serving tea with as much as dedication as it did when it first started.

The grandchildren besides being modernized and familiar with the media profession did not leave their ancestral house and believed that living there would keep the culture and history of the place alive. Surprisingly, the haveli that they reside in was once the haveli of Ghalib Mirza’s second wife. It definitely must be exciting to live in a house with intricate Mughal style designed pillars, doors, windows, and houses. Farhan Yahya said that the love and the respect of the people could not make him leave the place where he spent his childhood.

A must visit if you want to have a perfectly made hot cup of tea.

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Anubhav Sapra is an avid foodie! He is a Founder but proudly calls himself a Foodie-in-chief at Delhi Food Walks. He is also a street-food and Indian regional cuisine connoisseur and loves to write about street-food.
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Shahjahanabad ki Sair

Shahjahanabad ki Sair

By Anubhav Sapra

I met Osama Jalali, the famous food critic, a few days back in the alleys of Chitli Qabar, where he shared about the Shahjahanabad ki Sair Food Festival at Ssence, The Suryaa Hotel, from the 19th of December to the 21st of December.

There are many reasons to go to Shahjahanabad ki Sair at Suryaa Hotel, the first being that the food is cooked by Nazish Jalali, mother of Osama Jalali, who hails from Rampur and knows all the ins and outs of Rampur and Old Delhi cuisines. Secondly, Osama Jalali, who himself was born in Old Delhi, has curated the food festival. Thirdly, the spices and ingredients have been picked straight from Old Delhi; fourthly, to interact with Nazish Jalali and Osama Jalali, to understand the food preparations; fifthly, the food is served in copper utensils, which has its own charm of the old city. Sixthly, not much oil and ghee has been used in the cooking, keeping in mind the clientele of the hotel. Seventhly, the sair (literally, the journey, of Old Delhi food) can be enjoyed at one place in the cold winter of Delhi. Lastly, the best food cooked in the world is always by mothers in the home kitchen and has to be exceptionally good.

WP_20141214_20_27_14_ProThe sair at Shahjahanabad started with chicken seekh kebab and kache keeme ke kebab. In the main course, I was served aloo gosht, chicken korma, saag kofta, mutton nahari, hari mirch ka keema, and mutton biryani. All of them were excellent in taste, especially hari mirch ka keema, which has a nice flavour of green chillis but can be handled easily even if one does not like the spicy food preparations. The mutton biryani is cooked in the dum style and served with red chillis chutney. Most of the biryani sellers in Old Delhi use a special kind of rice called “sella” (par boiled) rice. I have seen the most famous biryani seller in Haveli Azam Khan draining out the excess water from the rice on a piece of cloth. That shows the rice will always retain its shape even if it is over cooked and water can be added if it is undercooked. The art of cooking biryani is in basmati rice, neither overcooked nor undercooked. Nazish has done justice to the biryani by retaining the shape, texture, flavours of the spices and tenderness of the meat.

WP_20141214_20_36_36_ProI rounded off my meal with Zarda, sweet flavourful rice with khoya, raisins, cashews, cherries and ghee. Throughout the sair, I never felt like I was sitting in a fine dining, high end place, as the interaction with Osama Jalali about the bawarchis, khansamas, and the food revolved around Shahjahanabad.

The menu works on a rotational basis with different kebabs and curries every day. So, if you want to get the feel of the home cooked style food of Shahjahanabad, visit Suryaa hotel before the 21st of December between 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. The price per person is Rs. 1950 for the entire buffet.

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Anubhav Sapra is an avid foodie! He is a Founder but proudly calls himself a Foodie-in-chief at Delhi Food Walks. He is also a street-food and Indian regional cuisine connoisseur and loves to write about street-food.
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Manzoor Hotel

Manzoor Hotel

WP_20141117_029As I strolled around the streets of Ballimaran, relishing the delicious taste of Habshi Halwa, I came across an old restaurant by the name Manzoor Hotel, giving us the feel of a dhabha. This hotel was established by a man named Zahoor Ahmed, who like us fancied about food to such an extreme that he made it his passion to start his own hotel sixty-seven years back. He was a cook by profession before, and his love for food made him start his own little restaurant which is very famous in Ballimaran.

The initial years of Manzoor Hotel saw them serving only nahari, nali and bheja (all buff dishes), but in the last ten years, there has been an assortment in the menu by including chicken, fish, and vegetarian options as well.

The Hotel has opened a branch in the same lane, in fact very much opposite to the main restaurant, serving a range of delectable and appetizing lunch and dinner to the people around.

Manzoor Hotel is now managed by Zahoor Ahmed’s two sons, Saim and Sarim. Sarim has been helping his father and elder brother in the business for the past three years. The restaurant is famously known for all its dishes which are served with khamiri roti, which is made with white flour mixed with yeast and baking soda.

During the day, you will get a wide variety of dishes to choose from, which include: buff korma, chhole keema, bheja, dal fry, egg curry, chicken stew, aloo matar paneer, chicken keema, fish curry, chicken kofta, chicken korma, and chicken rizala (cooked in milk and cream). These are mouth-watering and exquisite dishes that one can order and treat and savor their palate with piquancy, all ranging from Rs. 25 to Rs. 40 per quarter plate. You can easily have a meal within Rs.250.

In the evenings, they serve the most famous dish – nahari, nali, and bheja which can be mixed and fried together in Amul butter on demand. The shop timings are from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Located at the entrance of Gali Qasim Jan, opposite Hamdard Gali, Manzoor hotel is a must-visit place for nahari, nali and bheja.

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Anubhav Sapra is an avid foodie! He is a Founder but proudly calls himself a Foodie-in-chief at Delhi Food Walks. He is also a street-food and Indian regional cuisine connoisseur and loves to write about street-food.
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Asli Habshi Halwa

Asli Habshi Halwa

By Anubhav Sapra

WP_20141117_016I came across something very interesting when I recently roamed around in the streets of Ballimaran. The entrance of Punjabi Phatak in Ballimaran greeted me with a sweetmeat, “Asli habshi halwa”. This sweet is made up with many nutritious ingredients put together such as milk, desi ghee, cashew, nuts, almonds, clove, kewda, wheat flour, and only during winters, saffron. It is recommended in the cold weather as it is a good source of energy and gives strength to our body to prevent weakness.

The name in itself is very intriguing, which got me thinking why a sweet should be named “habshi”. Habshi is the Urdu word for the colour black and also a name commonly used by many Delhiites for people of African descent because of their color and strength. Isn’t that a bit harsh?

Firoz Ahmed, the proud owner of the shop, shared the journey of the sweetmeat since the time of undivided India. The original shop of habshi halwa was in Chandni Chowk, located somewhere in between Kucha Rehman and Kucha Ustad Daag. Abdul Khaliq was the owner of the shop, famously known as Ghantaghar Habshi Halwa Wale. During the Partition, Abdul Khaliq migrated to Pakistan, leaving his shop in the hands of his workers.

After the Partition, Firoz’s father started with a small granary shop, and sold paan and bidi to earn a living. He met a worker from Abdul Khaliq Habshi Halwa Wale and learned the art of making habshi halwa from him. The recipes were passed down from that worker of Abdul Khaliq’s shop to Haneef to Firoz and till date, Firoz Ahmed makes this delicacy at his home.

WP_20141118_038The shop is now looked after by his son, Firoz Ahmed in Punjabi Phatak, Ballimaran. Mohammed Hanif’s brothers have also continued the business of selling habshi halwa but have opened their own stores named after their brother, namely, Hanif Dairy in Gali Qasimjan, near Hamdard Dawakhana, which has been doing brisk business there for more than ten years now. A few shops after that, I found another shop selling the same sweet by the name Ahmed Dairy, which was started by Taqi Ahmed. To differentiate from the others and retain the original identity of Abdul Khaliq’s shop, a picture of Ghanta Ghar (the clock tower in Town Hall) is printed on the box of Firoz Ahmed’s Habshi Halwa.

Habshi halwa is one of Old Delhi’s famous delicacies and is rich in flavour and aroma. It takes nine hours to cook this sweet and it is sold throughout the year, but mostly in the winters from October to March. It is priced at Rs. 430 per kilogram. The shelf life of the sweetmeat is one month. It may become dry after one month but the taste remains the same.

Ghanta Ghar Wala supplies this halwa all around India, mostly to Kanpur and abroad in Pakistan. During the month of December season, they offer yellow carrot halwa which is supposed to be eaten cold and is made without ghee. I found this extremely new and fascinating. I am eagerly waiting for the December to savour this carrot halwa. I wonder how it will taste – halwa without ghee and served cold.

If you have a sweet tooth and ever find yourself in Old Delhi, you must visit these shops located at the following addresses and try the extremely famous and delicious habshi halwa:

1.     Ghanta Ghar Wala – 1368, Punjabi Phatak, Ballimaran.

2.     Hanif Dairy – 1532, Gali Qasimjan, Near Hamdard Dawakhana, Lal Kuan.

3.     Ahmed Dairy – 1538, Gali Qasimjan, Lal Kuan.

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Anubhav Sapra is an avid foodie! He is a Founder but proudly calls himself a Foodie-in-chief at Delhi Food Walks. He is also a street-food and Indian regional cuisine connoisseur and loves to write about street-food.
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Daulat ki Chaat

Guess what Old Delhi is back with?

By Anubhav Sapra

I am delighted to announce that Babu Ram and his family members are back from the villages of Moradabad, Uttar Pradesh to the by-lanes of Old Delhi- Sitaram Bazar. Guess what he is back with? He is back with the ‘Daulat ki Chaat’, a delicacy of winter. It seems winters are just here!

I spotted Babu Lal, a Daulat ki chaat hawker, at the Chhata Shah ji lane, near Barsha bulla chowk where the famous lotan Chole Kulche sells his scrumptious meal. Till 10 am, you can find Babu Lal at Chhata Shah ji, and from 11 am to 7 pm at Maliwara in Chandni Chowk.

Pamela Timms in her book ‘Korma, Kheer and Kismet’ has beautifully summarized this winter delight. She mentioned,

1012776_558971730853379_1164812161_n“Daulat ki chaat (meaning ‘snack of wealth’) is probably Old Delhi’s most surprising street food. Anyone expecting the punchy, spicy flavours usually suggested by the word ‘chaat’ will be disappointed. It resembles uncooked meringue and the taste is shocking in its subtlety, more molecular gastronomy than raunchy street food, a light foam that disappears instantly on the tongue, leaving behind the merest hint of sweetness, cream, saffron, sugar and nuts; tantalizing, almost not there. I’ve often wondered if daulat ki chaat is a preview of what might be on the menu should we make it as far as the pearly gates. The means by which a pail of milk is transformed into the food of the gods, though, is the stuff of Old Delhi legend rather than of the food lab. First, so the story goes, milk and cream have to be whisked by hand before dawn ( preferably under the light of a full moon) in to a delicate froth, then left out on grass to set by the ‘tears of shabnam’ (morning dew) – but not too many, nor too few. At daybreak, the surface of the froth is touched with saffron and silver leaf and served with nuts and bura (unrefined sugar). Daulat ki chaat is only made in the coolest months because at the first ray of sunshine, it starts to collapse. It doesn’t travel well either- to enjoy this very local specialty, a winter pilgrimage to the shady gullies of Old Delhi has to be made.”(p. 147-148)

A dona of Daulat ki chaat costs Rs 40. Babu Ram’s family members (kinari bazaar- Khemchand, Gali Paranthe Wali- Rakesh, Dariba Kalan- Babu Ram and Maliwara- Babu Lal) are there in the alleys of Old Delhi with their khomchas selling Daulat ki Chaat. The winter delight is available until Holi. So, it is the time for a winter pilgrimage, in the words of Pamela Timms, to the gullies of Old Delhi to savour the delicate dessert.

Reference: Timms, P. (2014). Korma, Kheer and Kismet. New Delhi: Aleph

Anubhav Sapra is an avid foodie! He is a Founder but proudly calls himself a Foodie-in-chief at Delhi Food Walks. He is also a street-food and Indian regional cuisine connoisseur and loves to write about street-food.
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IFTAR FOOD WALK

11th July, 2014

IFTAR FOOD WALK

By Akshita Singh

It felt like just the whole world was out there, on the streets of Chawri Bazaar, cutting through cycles, rickshaws and enthusiastic people. We were no exception. All of us exuberant foodies who had congregated at Gate 3 of the Chawri Bazaar Metro Station were in for loads of culinary surprises in Delhi’s very own Walled City.

When there were stacks of chicken legs, laid beautifully in layers of concentric semicircles on one side, and the scrummy, sizzling Pakodas on the other, then being pushed through the jammed narrow lanes and struggling to move centimeters at a time through the throng of Matia Mahal, was a delight in itself. Soon enough, the magnificent Jama Masjid, with its overpowering domes came into sight. All alleys converged at the grounds of the sublime mosque and there from, the walk turned so much more exhilarating.

Our first stop was Kallan Sweets, where we tried some Paneer ki Jalebis that did appear different from the usual kind we eat, because of a darkish alloy orange outer layer and a thicker line of spiral. Adding Paneer into a dessert, and that too a very familiar one, was sure a refreshing novelty for most of us. As our walk resumed, we came across a plethora of carts stacking feni, a must-have during Sehri. Carts of dry fruits, none without mountains of dates, were put right under “Jeweller’s” and “ Currency Exchange” boards – a conspicuous portrayal of the power food amasses over everything else, during Ramzaan evenings.

479997_443364915747395_1675685616_nOur next stop was the Haji Mohd. Hussain shop that had massive cauldrons of Chicken and Mutton Biryani being cooked away into unsurpassable delectability. Even from a distance, the whiff of the Pandanus flowers (kewra), the dominating flavor in Biriyanis, reached us. Pakwaan, possessing the bread mastery skills, had delicacies like sheermal, bakarkhani, milk roti and rawamaida all set to decorate the counters.  The flies orbiting the cut pineapples and barfis could be a minor deterrence to the otherwise unabating enthusiasm, but at all the places we ate, hygiene was a surety.

Breaking from the tradition, this Iftar Party was celebrated right inside Jama Masjid, amidst innumerable other Muslim families. With that, the Iftar turned so much more authentic. Mats were laid, food baskets were pulled out and lined and we all clustered around the food. Till the time clock didn’t strike 7:25, we had each other and 2 mischievous striped cats for company. All we had to wait for now was the “boom”. Oh, yes, that’s what signals the beginning of Iftar.

Right after the boom, plates found hands, and chicken wings, jalebis, dates, and sheermal found plates. We reversed the usual order of eating and started with the Paneer Jalebis. Even sans any independent taste of paneer, these Paneer ki Jalebis had their distinctly sweet, fascinating flavor. Keema Samosas, amusingly moulded like the half-moon Gujjia, were crunchy and spicy with just the right thickness of the outside, and the stuffing.

Chicken thighs,inside a besan paste, were moderately crisp and tasted great when taken with Rumali rotis. Rotis were equally scrumptious when taken with Chicken Changhezi or Nahari. The pandanus fragrance re-emerged once the Chicken Biriyani baskets were opened. You’d crave to keep each bite in your mouth and savor it forever but within minutes of their being opened, not one grain of rice or a chicken crumb could be found in any of the baskets.

Sheermal was the most singular bread one could ever eat. The succulent, soft, milky and rarely-found bread is one of the few that complemented any sort of dish and yet, needed no dish at all to accompany it. The rows of tiny holes all over the sheermal are in fact perforations that are layered with oil to let it seep further into the sheermal.

1011450_518987261506509_237276233_nAfter the dinner was over and when most people around us left for their namaaz, we resumed our walk and stopped for some extremely invigorating watermelon and apple milk shakes. They won us over, both for their lusciousness and for their uniqueness, for, how often do we get to drink watermelon milk shakes?

The hot and syrupy Shahitukda with bread soaked in milk and the cold, creamy phirni both served in little earthen pots, were the ideal desserts after the appetizing meal and energizing drinks. So did that conclude the walk? No, not before one last, most essential gesture: Delhi Food Walks served chicken and naans to poor, hungry and homeless people lined outside kiosks, to bring a perfect closure to a wonderful walk on the auspicious occasion of Iftar.

The next walk is scheduled for the 13th July, 2014 at 6.00pm from Chawri Bazaar metro station, Old Delhi. If you want to get a guided culinary tour, you could always book a space for yourselves, contact Anubhav from Delhi Food Walks at #9891121333.

Anubhav Sapra is an avid foodie! He is a Founder but proudly calls himself a Foodie-in-chief at Delhi Food Walks. He is also a street-food and Indian regional cuisine connoisseur and loves to write about street-food.
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GIANI’S

 

GIANI’S

ADDRESS: Church Mission Road, FatehPuri, Delhi- 110006

CONTACT NO: 9210318644

For all the figure conscious people, let me tell you Old Delhi is not the place for you. Why so? Let me tell you!

An abode of the heavenly gods of taste, delicacy and food!This is what Old Delhi is all about.Simply after every 5-6 shops in the area, you will find an eating joint. Your shopping can never be complete without munching some or the other street food here. You will walk for a metre or two and you will find chaat- waalas, kachoris, jalebis and so much more all around the place.

Chandni Chowk shopping area is one such place where you can’t help but dig in some great food. From sweets to snack, it has it all. Giani’s food corner is a small eatery en route Fatehpuri. One has to turn right from the T-point at Shahi Majid, Fatehpuri. This outlet is the original Giani’s and it has many branches all across Delhi. Giani’s originally started as an ice cream corner, but now they have extended their menu to Chole Bhature, Chole Chawal, Lassi and a few more things. Not a very long menu to choose from though, but whatever the joint offers, it is worth it.

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The most popular thing offered her is the rabri falooda, which is actually vermicelli floating in rabri and a lot of crushed ice in a large glass.

I started my meal with a plate of lip-smacking chole bhature and with a glass of lassi. The bhature were crispy outside and soft inside. They were stuffed with little paneer(cheese) and that certainly added to the taste. The chole were not very good, they were a little undercooked. Lassi was served in a kulad, i.e. a container made of mud. The lassiwas outstanding, with the thick layer of cream on it and the smooth texture. It was cold with the perfect amount of sweetness.

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For those who have a sweet tooth, there is more that Giani’s offer. You can choose to have ice cream or Rabri Falooda or both for that matter! I preferred the much talked about rabri falooda, which was nothing less than heavenly. They give a big glass full of rabri. Rabri “is a sweet, condensed milk based dish made by boiling the milk on low heat for a long time until it becomes dense and changes its colour to pinkish. Sugar, spices and nuts are added to it to give it flavour. It is chilled and served as dessert”.

The prices, like most restaurants in Old Delhi are economical. The chole bhature cost around Rs. 60 per plate, the lassi is around Rs.30 and the rabri falooda cost nearly Rs.60. A nice and filling meal for two can be had within Rs.400.

The ambience is not very luxuriant, but a decent one. It can get a 7/10. The chole bhature would certainly get a 7.Lassi was 10/10 for me. The creamy texture is still there in my mouth. And the rabri falooda of course, it would score an 8.5 on my scorecard.

The overall experience was good, but I would highly recommend the rabri falooda for all the sweet lovers.

Happy eating!

 

Foodie Correspondent:Kashish Badar

Photo Credit:PiyushNagpal

 

Anubhav Sapra is an avid foodie! He is a Founder but proudly calls himself a Foodie-in-chief at Delhi Food Walks. He is also a street-food and Indian regional cuisine connoisseur and loves to write about street-food.
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Lala ji’s poori and sabzi

Lala ji’s poori and sabzi

By Anubhav Sapra

Recently the statements by Congress MP Raseed Masood and spokesperson Raj Babbar about the availability of food between Rs. 5-12 made headlines everywhere, from national dailies to news channels. Like all others, I also  found it very hard to believe the claim and decided to check it for myself.

I tried to explore every nook and corner of the famous streets of Purani Dilli, starting from Bara Dari, Ballimaran, Matia Mahal, Lal kuan, Sardar Swarup Chowk, Khari baoli to Chandni Chowk including many kuchas and galis to find out a place where one can have a wholesome meal at Rs 5.

Nothing seemed to put an end to my search. However, on my way to Fathepuri Masjid, I located a small shop at Sardar Swarup Chowk, ‘Lala ji Poori Sabzi Wale’.The shop was crowded, a large number of people were queuing up with money in their hands to grab a plate of Lala ji’s poori and sabzi.

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Here you can get three poori(s) with aloo and chana sabzi for Rs10. The poori(s) are crisp and deep fried in the oil and sabzi is equally good with just the right amount of spices added to it.

I couldn’t help but feel amazed at the simplicity of the place, the warm hospitality, the hurrying customers, the delicious food and the astonishingly low price. Bhai Waah!
Happy Eating! 

 

Anubhav Sapra is an avid foodie! He is a Founder but proudly calls himself a Foodie-in-chief at Delhi Food Walks. He is also a street-food and Indian regional cuisine connoisseur and loves to write about street-food.