Kolkata: Local Dhaba and Street Food

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India celebrated its Independence Day last Tuesday. We didn’t join in any of the celebrations ’cause Azri was working. But we did sign up for a Street Food Walk a couple of days later just to feel a little more like a local.

Of course, we were scared about getting food poisoning, but we took all sorts of precautions (e.g. being more disciplined in eating probiotics daily and having diarrhoea pills on standby) and we just put on an #okgo mindset. So, we were excited for the walk! However, the tour didn’t meet our standards. There wasn’t any structure in both food and historical/intellectual contents and we didn’t learn much. Plus, the tour was called Street Food Walk, but we ate at restaurants more than eating by the streets. It was disappointing. Guess the saving grace was trying out new food. And oh, not getting any tummy discomforts at all.

Location 1: Anadi Cabin
Interesting food: Duck Egg Moghlai Parata

I don’t know how exactly to describe duck egg but I know that it goes extremely well in a prata/parata. Someone should sell this in Singapore! Super sinful indulgence ūüėõ

Location 2: Nizam’s Restaurant
Interesting food: Pudina (mint) Sauce

I didn’t like the spices which was on the tandoori chicken (right photo) but tandoori fish (top left photo) was fresh and melted in my mouth, and the pudina sauce and the “Indian mustard” (this is exactly the words used by the tour guide) were great dips.

Location 3: Nahoum’s
Interesting fact: Kolkata’s last Jewish bakery¬†

I didn’t enjoy the food here. Puffs were too dry and cakes were too light. I’ve tried desserts elsewhere and I’ve came to conclusion that my tastebuds do not know how to appreciate the way the locals appreciate their sweet things.

 Location 4: Maa Kali Stores

Nothing special about the sandwich but watching the sandwich making process made me want that sandwich grill so bad… I’m dreaming of egg mayo grilled sandwich and spicy tuna with cheese ones too….. Ok, I’m drooling.

Location 5: Russel Punjabi Dhaba (Roadside Restaurant)
Interesting food: Chicken Bharta

Raw onions (top right photo) were served with spices and lime juice as a starter. Most of the restaurants here do that, but Azri and I never touched it. But this time round, we tried. Azri has always been a fan of onions, eating them raw with ketupat and satay or in his sandwiches, so he liked it. I prefer my onions chopped and cooked, so it’s not for me.

But the chicken bharta, a Punjabi dish which has pulled chicken soaked in an onion and tomato based gravy, was a stellar. We had it with naan, but all I could imagine was having it with the duck egg¬†parata. I’m drooling again.

Location 5a: Some street
Interesting food: Papri Chat

Crunchy, sweet and sour, and occasionally hot – that’s how I would describe the dish. According to some online sources, papri¬†means wafers, while¬†chat¬†means snacks or fast food.

Location 5b: Some street
Interesting food: Aloo Kabli

Main ingredients for this Indian snack was aloo (potato), chickpeas and beansprouts. For the first time ever, I found beansprouts to look glorious (right middle photo)! Anyway, I was too full for this snack and while I did take a bite of it, I don’t actually remember how it tasted like. Hah.

Location 6: Shibuji
Interesting drink: Masala Soda

I was very skeptical about having spices in my soft drink but oh wow, yums! It was Coke which parties in your mouth! Apparently, it helps with digestion. True or not, it was a good drink to end the tour with.

Like I’ve mentioned, not the best street walk we’ve been on ’cause we didn’t learn anything more than on the superficial level. (And my goodness, it was expensive.) But yes, at least we did learn a little still.