Nand di Hatti
By Anubhav Sapra
There are a few landmark eateries in Delhi that continue to sustain their authentic taste, one generation after the other. When it comes to Delhi’s classic Punjabi dish – chole bhature, only few have retained the original taste. Out of these few establishments, one of them is Nand di Hatti in Sadar Bazar. I went there with my parents the other day. My parents had the first bite and proudly gave their verdict, that the taste and quality is still the same even after thirty years.
The complete name of the eatery is Nand di Hatti. The address is 829, Paan Mandi, Sadar Bazar, Delhi – 110006, and their phone numbers are 9582105678, 9958717192, and 9811480566.
The family is originally from Rawalpindi in Pakistan, where they had a chole, kulche and roti shop in Raja Bazar. After partition, they migrated to Delhi in 1947 and started selling chole kulche in Sadar Bazar on a cart. In 1960, Nand Lal ji bought the shop at the corner of Paan Mandi and introduced his chole bhature made in desi ghee. Currently, Om Prakash ji, son of the late Nand Lal ji runs the shop with his two sons. There is one more shop by the name of Nand di Hatti, owned by his brother.
The dough of bhaturas is prepared with suji (semolina), maida (white flour), dahi (yoghurt), namak (salt), cheeni (sugar), hing (asafoetida), baking powder, and yeast. Their addition of suji to the bhatura dough took me by surprise. The bhaturas are soft and even crispy, with no oil dripping out. The chole was a mix of delectable flavours. Owing to the few most important spices used quite commonly in our Indian dishes like hing (asafoetida), jeera (cumin), ajwain (carom), saunf (fennel seeds), and mirch (red and yellow chillies). They also do not add any onion and garlic. The best part is that you will never feel that you are missing out on them. The accompaniments served with the dish include amla ka achaar (gooseberry pickles) and green chillies achar. Spicy, enough! It was a real street treat! A plate of chole and bhature costs Rs. 90.
The bhaturas, chole, and pickles are all made in desi ghee. The dish is certainly not for health conscious and faint-hearted people. My parents without worrying about the cholesterol gobbled the dish. I, too, happily wiped down the plate of chole bhature.