Delhi is a city of foodies. And after my 4N5D
But is that all ? Definitely not and Delhi being the capital of India, there are hundreds of good restaurants and food joints worth visiting. But I had a short visit and could not cover all. Hence in this blogpost, I’d like to talk on few of the stand-alone places, which I loved in Delhi.
Andhra Bhavan Canteen
Delhi, being the capital of India, boasts of many state
The entrance is not really that impressive. But once I got in, it was a madhouse. Hundreds of people were enjoying their lunch inside a large room. It runs of a prepaid system and you need to buy the token first from the counter on the left. Now here lies the trick.
I’d always suggest for their veg thali (which is unlimited) and order for one portion of Fish fry and one portion of mutton pepper fry. Off course, order for some soft drinks if you feel like. Filtered water is served on the table and unless you are super finicky, you don’t need to bother. Please be ready to share a table with strangers and be ready to gobble up the food. This is not a fine dining slow-relaxed-eating joint and there is always someone waiting for you to finish your meal.
The thali itself is super tasty and is bound to satisfy one hungry soul. But, what’s life without some non-veg fare for a bong ? And this comes the sides. The fish in the fish fry varies from day to day. Basically whatever fish was good, the canteen management gets it and fries. It’s pretty heavily spiced and dark fried. With a sprinkling of the lemon slice given, it’s a bliss. Same is the story with the Mutton
Do not, I repeat, do not forget to take extra helpings of their ghee and enjoy the piping hot tice with a sprinkling of gunpowder (kept and reloaded on the table). I missed some curd-chilly, but that’s just me. I was told, they make a superb Biryani on Sundays, so maybe worth a try on my next visit. Thali was priced at 130/- and the fish and mutton fry were 170/- each.
Matka Peer Dargah
Just a short distance from the Andhra Bhavan
However, today all we could find is a dargah and all the trees had
The sitting was very very rustic and you need to be ready to share the table with strangers. Maybe the food was not some super life-changing stuff, but simple soul food.
Cafe Lota inside National Crafts Museum
Being a bong, I was craving for some sweets and Anirban took me to The National Crafts Museum. Now please don;t think otherwise. I am hardly into anything else other than culinary art. But this place
It’s a pretty sofisticated cafe with proper sitting and food in Delhi is not cheap. But the dessert is pretty good here along with the selection of fancy coffee, I was told. Anirbar took the lead and ordered the Apple Jalebi and Baked bhapa doi cheesecake. And I must say, they were fantastic.
The portion size is pretty good and justified the pricing. Apple roundels were cut out and deep fried in a Jalebi batter and topped with some Rabri. Result was pure love. Same was the case with the Cheesecake. The moist flavor of bhapa doi gelled perfectly with the cheesecake and it was a sheer pleasesure. Do go their after a hearty meal and I don;t think you’ll be disappointed.
Curry Singh Kitchens for authentic Punjabi food in Delhi
But all said and done, I was craving for some authentic Punjabi Food. Now, “authentic” is one of the most misused words in today’s world, so let me rephrase it as home-style food. I am sure that in Punjabi households, they don’t put in that much cream in everyday Dal, neither they put dry fruits in god-damn every dish. Use of butter is evident, as it’s mostly home-made. And god knows how they’ve started putting food coloring into everything.
So, once I was looking for something like that, I was taken to Gurgaon (rather Arcadia mall) by Anirban, The location can be checked here in Google Map. in the quest of home-style authentic Punjabi Food. Chef Reetika Gill is a magician. She knows her food, or rather home food, as she calls it. Her restaurant has got around 15-20 dishes and the setup is pretty rustic.
Now, personally, I trust a restaurant which has lesses items in the menu. And this was one such place. The menu was simple- some Bhatti Ka murgh (Bhatti is the term used for Tandoor), an assortment of bread, Kali Dal and Mutton Curry. Some vegetables were there and despite much pressure from everyone, I stuck to my favorites- non-veg items with Dal-Roti.
Now have you seen the movie Ratatouille? Yes, that famous Pixar movie which every food lover must watch at least once. Anton Ego takes the first bite into his mouth and his eyes closed in love. He was back in his childhood, where he could feel his mother feeding him the ratatouille. I tore the bread, dipped in the Kali Daal and it was the same with me. Home cooked food is always the same. They boast of simplicity. Creating a simple dish without much hullabaloo is one of the toughest things and Curry Singh Kitchens did just that. Ingredients were fresh and hand-picked, the food was less and perfectly spicy and with food was without the destroyer of Punjabi food- cream.
Bhatti Ka Murgh didn’t have a food color and the meat was soft. The Fish Amritsari smelt of FRESH Ajwain and the mutton curry-
Reetika cooked the Halwa for us and it was full of ghee (we loved that) and without dry fruits, which we loved. It’s pure ecstasy.
Baar Baar Khan Market
Now if Curry Singh Kitchens is all about simplicity, Baar Baar Delhi is all about style, yet maintaining the superb food standard. Chef Sujan Sarkar is my good friend and we used to study in the same college. Now, some people are born to do certain things and Sujan was borne to create magic in the
The decor is top notch, but let’s come down to food. The first cocktail was Leh Berry. It’s made keeping in mind the five ingredients – alcohol, lemon, water, sugar
For food, I was served in tasting portions. It was Duck
Moti Mahal for the Butter chicken
While in Delhi, not visiting The Moti Mahal is a carnal sin. It’s like visiting Agra and not going to experience Taj Mahal. They have claimed to invent what is the epitome of North Indian food, Butter Chicken and Tandoori Chicken. Moti Mahal was established in 1947 and its patrons include all the big shots- from Indira Gandhi to Gordon Ramsay. It’s in the old area of Daryaganj, Delhi and it seems time stood still there. We went there over
But I don’t know whether it was a bad day or whatever the reason, the food was pretty average. I mean I’ve tasted much better Butter Chicken elsewhere. The Tandoori Chicken was good at the best. And the best part was the Kaali Dal. It was damn good, provided you don’t take into account the Dal from Bukhara, ITC Hotels. But whatever, all the experiences can;t be good.
And the best Thai Food
Wise men always said that the best should be kept for last. And finally, I should pay thanks to Sirattiya (better half of of Anirban Bora) for treating me with the best Thai food that I’ve tasted. Sirattiya hails from Thailand and it’s a sweet love story of how they got together. But let’s not get into that. Anirban was boasting about his wife’s cooking skills and me, being myself, didn’t take him seriously. Now he invited me home for dinner and naturally, I jumped in.
So at his home, while we were discussing important matters like South Africa’s space policy or India’s foreign liaison policy, she took the pain of cooking a full meal for us- literally single-handedly. The best part was she was basically from Thailand and got married to an Indian glutton. So, it was best of both the worlds. She understood the items and spices here and got the substitutes for Thai ingredients easily. And that was the magic of home cooked food.
It was Pork Satay and Vietnamese Spring Rolls for
Overall, in these 5 days on the trail to taste the food in Delhi, I must say, I am fascinated. From the glittery lanes and bylanes of Jama Masjid to the dark lanes of Nizamuddin, from the
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