Street food of Delhi

The culinary and cultural heritage of India illustrates the harmonious blending of diverse influences over the centuries. Indian cuisine displays the genius of our culture and our people. As time has passed, with reducing distances and the hunger for taste and variety the different regions of the country have interacted with one another and influenced each other’s cuisine, flavours and fashion.
Delhi, the imperial capital for many dynasties, has drawn talent in diverse fields to seek their fortune here. The result was the city became a unique merger of multi cultures and cuisines. Its cuisine incorporated the best of Hindu-Rajput, Bania and Kayasthaas well as the Tusrkish, Afghani, Persian and Mughal influences. The interest of Mughal was so deep in their food that today Mughal cuisine is synonymous to the Indian cuisine.
Delhi has a vibrant tradition of snacks and street foods, both vegetarian and non-vegetarian and it truly is the gastronomical capital of India. The best place to have some amazing street food is Old Delhi, the famous paranthewali gali and the lanes of Dilli 6. For some extremely tasty and mouth watering non-vegetarian dishes, walk through the lanes near Jama Masjid. You will find everything from the normal aloo and gobhi to the crazy bhindi and karela to the exotic meva and rabdi filled ones. These paranthas are deep-fried in ghee for that heavenly taste. Chole bhature and jalebi with warm milk are also breakfast favourites.
Being a city of vivid heritage and people from all the states of India here and thus it has turned out to be an alloy of all the sub-cultures in India. People from different states have brought a variety of cuisines to Delhi and there’s nothing you can’t find here. So if one starts Purani Dilli or Old Delhi or what was once called Shahjahanabad, you will find a number shops selling a number of variety of dishes. Some of the streets and places are totally dedicated to these food items only.
The Gali Paranthewali, where you can find a number shops selling various kinds of paranthas, which is actually traditional Indian bread. As you go near Jama Masjid you shall see shops selling variety of non vegetarian items starting from Tandoori items and Kabobs at Karim’s to authentic Mughal sweetmeats at Ghantewala Sweet. Each lane in Purani Dilli has its own range of cuisines. If you go to Ballimaran, you have Nehari at Bismillah and authentic Afghani Pilao and Green tea at Pathanwadi.
Pandara Road Market’s famous kebabs and biryanis and Bengali Market’s sweetmeats & chaats are but a few to be mentioned where you can relish this city’s culinary specialities.
One of the favourites of Old Delhi are the Kulle an unusual chaat made by scooping out the centre of either a tomato, a banana, sweet potato or cucumber and filling it with chick peas, pomegranate seeds, spices and lemon juice, fruit sandwiches,regular tikkis, samosas, kachoris papri chaat and golgappas.
With the amalgamation of cultures over centuries, Delhi today offers an enormous variety of exquisitely prepared cuisines from all over the world – all individually suited to every type of food style preference and budget. During our tours of this city one comes across some of the best of eateries, offering truly sumptuous fare. Be it an elite boutique restaurant located in Chanakyapuri, Qutab Minar, Khan Market or Greater Kailash I & II, the highly popular restaurants around Connaught Place, Hauz Khas and Defence Colony, or the simple, yet bustling & friendly roadside ‘dhabas’, the inquisitive foodie in you will most definitely find delicacies to appeal to and tantalise your taste buds.
Although Delhi’s gastronomic fare is not characteristic of any specific, original food culture, the most popular cuisine enjoyed by Delhi-ites and visitors alike is ‘Mughlai’ Cuisine. Mughlai preparations have always been favoured in Northern India, and today is popular the world over for its distinct aromatic nuances and spicy flavourings.
If you want to have something spicier, then head for Chaat Corner near Chandini Chowk Metro Station. Rabri Faludas at Giani near Fatehpuri Masjid. Apart from it you can taste food of every state at Dilli Haat. You can also go for Continental, European and other Asian cuisines if you like. There are some of the very popular fast-food giants such as Subway and Mc. Donald’s, who have their outlets in Delhi.
For the faint hearted – when it comes to the devilish little ‘Red & Green Chili’ – please do not despair, for Delhi has attracted many, many Continental, European and Asian Master Chefs of distinction to offer friendlier morsels of perfection and familiarity for you. The flavours and textures of European cuisine have now become so popular to Delhi-ites, and other Indians, that the fusion style restaurant has also become highly in vogue.

Delhi: A haven for Foodies!

Delhi loves to eat as well as boast about the street food that it showcases. Be it Sweet, Salty, Spicy, Mughlai, Chinese, Italian, Mexican or the local flavors, we love the food as much as we love to make you taste the cuisine. Delhi is probably the only place where three different restaurants open with their contributions to the flavors at various corners of the city. The capital of India might be tiny on the map but it is the show window of the country, where we get representations from different parts of the country, in various corners of the city. Right from delectable pork chops to simple chhole bhature or rajma Chawal, you get the best of the best flavors here!

Old Delhi being the heart of non vegetarian foodies, who like their meat cooked with a lot of spices, and thick gravy would love their time around Old Delhi, the lanes of which smell of the mouthwatering kebabs which are a complete gastronomical delight to your tummy.

Delhi being a mélange of cultures, and with each culture comes its specific cuisine, especially during the month of Ramzaan, there are people at the Jama Masjid to break their fast but also there are people who make a trip solely to savour the delicacies of Iftaar, whether the slow cooked nihari which is served in the morning with Sheermal or Shahi Tukda cooked in milk and sugar, with a lot of dry fruits, the flavours are rich and unique enough to attract every Dilliwalah to the narrow lanes of Shahjahanabad.

For some, food is the essential part of social life of a resident in this city that we are willing to travel kilometres kilometres in distance and get stuck in traffic for hours to try the newly opened up restaurant in a separate corner of the city which promises to offer unique cuisine in a unique ambience. Whether it’s heritage your heart desires or experiencing the social life of the people Delhi has it all, by day a traveller or tourist can explore the culture and heritage of the city and by night they can choose to visit their nearby watering holes for a relaxed meal and reminisce on the day spent soaking in Delhi’s soul perhaps slowly revising your outlook towards Delhi.

Whether you want to explore the heritage, or experience the local culture of Delhi, it has ALL; a throbbing metropolitan city with a composite culture and a wide range of attractive and diverse experiences. Following a guide book becomes meaningless in this city where experiences are easily customizable. Pick and choose from a wide range of itineraries that have been designed by ‘Delhi walks’ bearing in mind this inherent element of flexibility, in-depth knowledge of the heritage, history and culture that the historic city has to offer as well as the comfort and safety of the travelers who come to explore the city of Delhi.

An experiment with Gastronomic Delights of Old Delhi

‘India City Walks’ an organization with excellence, takes Old Delhi food tasting experiences, to a different level by ingenuously blending the taste of the city of Shahjahanabad with the comfort of our cushy rickshaws as you hop into the royal carriages that the Old city has to offer for an exquisite, out of the world experience through the cultural alleys.
A Food tour coupled with rickshaw tour lets you taste some delicacies, while you explore the history of these delicacies, how they were curated and consequently went on to become the family secrets. Unlike the regular experiences, this memorable experience is curated by ‘Rickshaw Tours’, a flagship vertical of ‘India City Walks’ was conceptualized to let you sit back, relax while we take you through the history of the place in a comfortable ride. The custom made rickshaws which are owned by ‘India City Walks’ have been designed keeping in mind the culture, heritage, history that the historic city has to offer, coupled with comfort and safety of the travellers who come to explore the city.
We begin our journey with a brief history about the emperor who built the city, with the imposing grand structure Jama Masjid in the background. As we climb onto our beautiful carriages painted in the bright colours of the Mughal structures we take you through the bustling lane of the beautiful, colourful Kinari bazaar amidst the romantic glittering laces which will instantly transport you back to an old world. With all that rush, a stopover at Naughara or the lane of nine houses to experience serenity within excitement before we head to taste delectable fried flat breads.
As we enter the paranthewali gali, a narrow lane filled with shops selling flat breads of different flavours, we enjoy the overload of senses and fight between heart and brain to taste the delicious fried paranthas or kachoris or glassful of lassi as much as you would be enjoying having them. But the taste enhances once we tell you about the story of how it was conceptualized. You could try one of the stuffed breads with equally delicious gravies or kachoris filled with a mix of lentils and secret spices swimming in tomato gravy or perhaps have a glassful of thick lassi. We are sure to make you absolutely spoilt for choice and can taste everything keeping in mind the plethora of delicacies we have kept lined up for you.
This is was just a trailer. After satisfying your initial hunger pangs we hop on to our rickshaws and ride towards Fatehpuri Masjid, the end of the main street ChandniChowk, which has various experiences to offer for our taste buds through the many lanes as we stop in front of the Town Hall or Begum kiSarai for an interesting story about the colonial structure by our explorer as you sip away on an ice cold banta (lemon soda).
From Town Hall, we ride towards Asia’s largest Spice Market, where you can smell the freshly grounded spices the smell of which lingers in the air as you dig into the concoction of vermicelli in cooked milk and dry fruits giving a frozen cold feeling in the mouth. If you thought the thick glass of Lassi was the only sweet that the walled city had to offer, you might be proven wrong!
The city is known and proven haven for non-vegetarian delicacies, as we head towards another part of the walled city which has lines of shops selling non vegetarian food, you have a plethora of choice to choose from. Right opposite Jama Masjid, the aroma of the charcoal grilled kebabs and the spicy, sweet gravies reach you even before you reach the place! To finish it off, we have kulfi, Rabrifaluda, as desert to finish your meal in a royal manner!
This gastronomical journey comes to an end at Jama Masjid, from where we started our journey and we bid you farewell with lots of memories and cultural imprints of Shahjahanabad!
The advantages of taking a food Rickshaw Tour with ‘India City Walks’ is that you can gorge into the delicacies without exhausting yourself physically and our promise is by the end of our tour, you and your belly will be left satisfied and the soul fulfilled!

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