Archive | October, 2010

Mumbai Street Food – Part 2: Sev Puri, Bhel Puri, Ragda Pattice, Dahi Puri…

29 Oct

Have you ever got out of your office all exhausted and hungry at the end of the day? Almost always, isn’t it? Well I used to face this ‘super hungry at 7 pm‘ dilemma a whole lot when I was doing one summer internship in Mumbai. Every day I would come out of the office building with a rumbling tummy, looking for a quick snack which would help me make peace with my tummy till dinner time. Those were also the days when I was living on a meager stipend and could not afford the subway or the new yorker or even the udipi restaurants for a snack. And I discovered the joy of eating a scrumptious and tasty ‘sev puri‘ at the road side stall round the corner. I never complained of hunger at 7 pm, ever again!

One might say, that one gets even more rich and delicious chaat in Delhi. Agreed. But the beauty of the street chaat in Mumbai is the consistent taste that you would get at every single sev puri wala as though they all operate by a common SOP (standard operating procedure), which they learnt in one ‘sev puri technology’ school! No really, I am not kidding. You might want to confirm this by trying sev puri at various places. The garnish may differ, the quantities of sev on it may be more or less but the inherent taste remains the same. How delightful can it get?

And, there’s more. These food stalls by the road side not only serve great sev puri but also the famous bombay bhel puri, radga pattice (which is aloo tikki with a pea curry sauce), dahi puri (small puris with curd and chutney) and the world famous- pani puri! Of all these foods, I am partial towards sev puri because unlike pani puri or dahi puri, it does not make me worry as to whether I ll get an upset tummy from eating here. But again, I have said this before and will say it again, enjoying street food any where in India, is a joy reserved for the bold and the brave!

So where can you go to have these fabulous snacks? Juhu and Girgaum Chowpatty are the best places to begin. The sev puri walas in Juhu, Dadar near Plaza cinema, Ghatkopar khau galli are just to name a few. If you dont want to travel to these places then just head to the nearest suburban station and I can guarantee that you will find atleast one chaat stall near it.

Happy eating! Slluuurrrrrrrpppp!

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Mumbai street food- part 1: Egg Bhurji and Omelette stalls

4 Oct

A Sunday evening. A long week looming ahead. A ‘not able to figure out where to have dinner’ A and M. Thats when I heard the sound of metal clanging. It was the sound of the metal ladle on the tawa at the road side omelette and egg bhurji stall. A big wide smile on our faces!

Street food in India is a phenomenon I have never been able to get over. Every single city, town, village in our country has some or the other famous street food joint that every person will swear by. Mumbai is one such mecca for street food. So here I am doing a series on the variety foods available by the roadside in the city.

At the onset one confession. I am obsessed with eggs and egg preparations. Egg bhurji (a spicy Indian scrambled egg with onion, tomatoes, chillies) and masala omelette, especially the one available at the ‘nukkad anda bhurji wala’, top the list. One might ask what is the big deal about the street food version of these two very common indian dishes? My answer: try it and you will know. The aroma of eggs cooking, the masala frying, the paav (bread) toasting- is a combination potent enough to make anyone passing by hungry. Correction. Starving!

Some famous egg bhurji and omelette stalls can be found at – Outside Fab India store, Kalaghoda; Khau galli, Ghatkopar; Khurshid Bhurji, Irla, Vile Parle; Prabhadevi Chowk signal, Prabhadevi; Opp. Chembur Station; outside Santacruz station (W), Outside Bandra station (W), Mumbai Central station – to name a few. You will find atleast one such stall outside every suburban railway station in Mumbai. Although all of them might not be famous like the one’s listed above, still the beauty of these omelettewalas is that they all dish out by and large similar fare in terms of taste. The differences will be in the spiciness and the texture of the bhurji/omelette. Another plus is that they customize the dish to your preference- medium hot and spicy, very hot, dry, moist, with red chillies, with green chillies etc.

This egg bhurji or omelette is always accompanied by two or more square soft bread pieces. At Rs. 25 to Rs. 40 per serving, it is extremely pocket friendly and wholesome at the same time.

The only catch is that you need to be a little brave with such a food adventure. Happy Eating!

Coming up next: The super ‘sev puri’

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