A Traveller's Diary

Subtitle

    DELHI IN A DAY: IT'S SAVOURIES

 

Delhi, commonly known as Dilli Dilwaalon Ki. Can't say much about Dilwaale, but yes, its for sure Khaane Peene Ki Nagri (foodies delight)

Delhi, our capital city has much to see, eat, enjoy, but here it is from our view point in 24 hours.

We have been to the city 'n' number of times, its mall, market, sight seeing, but this time we were here just to enjoy its flavours and this is something you will not get anywhere else.....

We reached Delhi airport at 9am, settled our bags (not ourselves) at a decent guest house in Gurgaon since it was close to Rahul's work place.

Immediately, took metro train to drop us at Nehru Park Station, from where we walked a distance of 5min. Finished our work at the embassy and headed to the market area for a volumptous b'fast of stuffed parontha. The parontha was such as if it was made out of cream and milk and not flour. Not much oily but toooo soft, full of stuffing and just melted in the mouth like malai...

There is just  one shop , in the middle of the market that serves these and none other and alike.

The market area is kind of wholesale bazaar for all computer needs. Having eaten so much, we took a stroll, Rahul picked up few hard disks and other gadgets ( i am very dumb at these especially when you are with a software engineer and a gadget freak :P)

To digest the morning meal, and head for next, we took a glass of sugar cane juice and headed for metro station to board for station - Chandni Chownk.

Chandni Chownk, lovably called as Purani Dilli (Old Delhi) is the heart of everything ; shopping [all designer copies/non designer, jewellery, famous for silverware, kapda market, cloth bazaar, anything and every damn thing which you will get at a much lower price than branded showrooms] and then ofcourse god of all hindustani food.

I remember coming to Purani Dilli during my wedding shopping with mum , but then I could not afford to relish all of these, afterall it was my wedding! 

But here i would also like to share a ''top secret''.  shhhhh.....

Rahul and myself being a junkie to the core dropped in at this place just a fortnight before our wedding since we were in delhi to celebrate new years, and could not help and resist the paranthas...

just the paranthas ;) ;P 

Today, we Started with a plate of Dahi bhalla from  Natraj.  There was no stopping.....A tiny shop at one corner of the tiny lane. We took our plate and were swift enough to look and move to a safe place before people pushed us aside and the entire plate toppled. We definitely could not afford that since it was after waiting for 15 min that our turn had come ..hahaha...

Next was the turn of Paranthas at the famous Paranthe waali gali. The charm of Old Delhi can never be bettered by anything other than the famous Paranthas. 

We waited till we could get a place for 2 of us at Kanhiya Lal Durga Prasad's shop. People were thronging in groups, and everyone wanted to have first as if scared that he might say - 'Bhaisaab khatam ho gaye'   

From a variety of around 100 paranthas we had to choose a few that our tummy could take. From aloo, gobi, mooli, paneer, cheese, mirchi, shimla mirch, daal, methi, pudina, nimbu, kaju, badam (yeah - dry fruits as stuffing too...wierd it sounds no? but yumm!!!!) , tamatar, bhindi, kishmish, sweet ones too....huh..and other crazy stuffings...

All paranthas are served with mint - pudina chutney, banana imli chatney, vegetable pickle and aloo sabzi. 

Paranthas here are cooked not in tandoor or pan, they are deep fried in desi ghee!

 A day at Chandni Chowk

 This reminds me '' The most enjoyable things in this world are either immoral, illegal or fattening!''

 And to pull this all, we had Malai waali lassi in kulhar (glass made of mud, remember how in olden days we used to have tea/ coffee also in such glasses.  

How can we not have a sweet, after all no meal is complete without one.

And it had to be none other than Gian ji ka rabri FaloodaWhat you get here is kulfi as kulfi should be - sinful, scrumptious and oh-so-splendid! Order any flavour - KesarPistaRoseKewraBananaMango, or Pomegranate

Since the size of stomach is limited, so we control else better have one of each and------INDULGE! 

 We strolled throught he digest in order to digest atleast 1% of what we had eaten in order to make place for other popular savouries.

Gosh! somebody either give us bed or a tab ##

We planned to explore a few chaat shops now. 

 Shree Balaji Chaat Bhandar  is perhaps the best and most popular chaatwalla in Chandni Chowk. I particularly recommend the Papdi Chaat with its liberal inclusion of Kachaalu ChutneyKhasta Papdis and saunth.

He is one of those gems tucked away in the chaotic by-lanes of Chandni Chowk which keep alive the magic of another time, another taste. 

 We definitely couldnot  afford to give a miss to the authentic chaat at Lala Babu Chaat Bhandar.

 Glorious Gol Gappe served with a type of Jal Jeera that's packed with harad (a digestive), kachoris stuffed with potato and peas, Gobhi-Matar Samosas,  and Matar Paneer Tikki are the fastest-selling items here.

Jugal Kishor Ramji Lal @ Chawri Bazaar is best known for the Fruit Chaat that has become a quintessential part of the sounds and sights of Chandni Chowk. His Fruit Chaat that is the winner here. 

 

Kachori, usually stuffed with pulses and served with potato curry, is another delicacy that makes your mouth water. Jung Bahadur Kachori Wala  is perhaps the most famous for its Urad Dal Kachori, which is served with Aloo Subzi. This place is surely worth the adventure.

 

We kept walking along the road, shopping  and eating alternatively.

 

Now we were too tired to eat or walk any more, so went to the famous Sheeshganj gurudwara, bowed and rested a while there.. 

 

On our way back we picked up some sohan halwa for friends and family which the legendry Ghantewala is known for. 

 

For people who are food, hygiene consious, finicky, i recommend donot  visit the place, and if you want to , then settle down at Haldiram's and enjoy his food and his rasmalai.:)

 

CRAZY FOOD WALK - Keep Buzzing !!!

 

Once at chandni chownk, apart from food, we did visit Jama Masjid, Jain temple and Gauri Shankar mandir. You too i guess should visit these places since you are so close. 

 

This was a day to remeber in our lifetime. Nothing ahead could we think of, so went back to our place of stay and slept over after a dose of  digestive like hajmola.

It was after a nap of 3-4 hours when we woke up, already late evening and time to sleep again....ufff......as if i was reliving the entire day while penning it down here. lol

 

Needless to say, Next day, i freaked out my day at shopping while Rahul was busy catching up with official work.

Took a metro direct to Sarojini nagar market, an auto for 30 Rs and got dropped off. Spent a few hours picking up chappals, tops, clips and clutches, which were very much in vogue, pocket friendly and pretty cool. Donot forget to bargain upto 50% the price told.

 

From here, with all the carry bags in hand, i bumped into a more sophisticated flea market, GK M block.

I picked up a couple of trendy pants and shirts, very much alike in quality and fashion to big stores but much unlike the prices quoted there.

So go ahead and take your pick!

 

Metro indeed has made our lives so easy. Now without even thinking twice on commuting, we can hop on - hop off between any place any number of times.

For better convinience we got a pass card for a day at for Rs 100 with a refundable security of Rs 100 which cuts the time of standing in queue everytime for ticketting.

I came back to room by evening, Rahul joined me in, got freshened up, and went for a light, romantic dinner at Hauz Ghaz Village.

Once again, metro.

A walk throught the street, looking at the places, there were many classy, posh, roof top restos, but we decided to sit at for dinner at   Park Balluchi 

Even though it was a weekday, the place was packed with guests. Open till midnight, it was a pleasing and well maintained place inspite of it being owned by Govt. amidst the park.


We were a little sceptical on the food at the place.  

We ordered, nizam veg kofta, which turned out to be very very good.

The grilled chicked that Rahul ordered was presented on a sword, live and gave a such a rich presentation.  

However, crispy debutant signature dessert which was ok ok. 

 

 

Next day, we were joined by my sis, who works at Gurgaon.

My mom joined in with us too for that day.


It was a fine morning, and we relaxed in the hotel, had breakfast and lazed.

after a while, all 4 of us, went to DLF Emporio mall to catch up with some fine lunch. 

 

We sat in the open sit out, with canopy's in place, fountains sprinkling mist,the ladies whispering the fashion seeing at the other lott , relishing the fine food - haute potatoes, sensual sushi,  the lentil soup garnished pretty by fancy chef's . It was a wonderful afternoon. 

We spent like a couple of hours and then Rahul went ahead with his work and we threesome ladies caught up with some gossip. :D

 

At night, Rahul flew back to Chennai, and we moved on to India Gate to catch a glimpse and it was drizzling.  

It was a perfect weather! 

We walked leisurely, had gappas, ice cream, played around in that little rain and had a lotttttt of funnnnn. It was after ages that all three of us were together free!!!

  

 

 The trip became a memorabilia!

 

March '15

It was a long weekend, and after ruling out many weekend getaways and destination, my sister finally came down to Delhi to spend a day with me..... and it was tough, as i had to now entertain her... 

It was a pleasant cloudy day with drizzle here n there.

We googled and planned the day...as below

 

As it was a cloudy day, we decided to take  car and skip the metro.. and headed straight to South Delhi.

 

We had got the booking done for one of the adventure rooms which was @ 1.45 pm and were there much before time.

So,we decided to pause at the Green Park market for  warm cup of coffee at the Costa Coffee, shop for trinkets at the roadside shops, picked up some bajra grains for my pet birds, and grabbed on besan ki barfi @ Evergreen sweets.... perfect for the weather!!

 

We, then reached the place, CTRL+ESC+Key @ Hauz Ghaz Village dot on time.

Had always played these spy games online/ mobile apps, and this was the opportunity to play it in real.

 

Played in groups of 2-8, a 60 min game being locked up in a room, appeared much easier than it actually turned out too be... Astonished we were, the clues, room within room, and the brain storming that was required and we did to crack the codes, still completed just 30% of it.....ALARM

 

A must visit for one and all, an hour well spent and  money worthwhile.

Later, we walked through the deer park, nibbling on some snacks, till we finally sat down at a cozy, high end restaurant.

(there are many... varied... and trust me they all are the best in their own way)

 

It was evening by then, and we wanted to make the most of the day and the weather and it was the last week before the sun showed in full power forcing us to lock ourselves indoors.

Dilli Haatcloseby, was a place to end a day in full swing and complete satisfaction.

Being a weekend, it was packed with vendors and also tourists.

So much to see, cultural events, (Bihar Utsav was being celebrated ) shop and eat ... the time flew  and it was dark, get tired and time to say GOODBYE.

 

Reaching back home, looking at the carry bags, it was an un describable feeling of contentment and happiness!!! AHHAAA... 

 

The well known, World heritage site, at our very home city Delhi, The Red Fort.

Yes, we decided to take our lo and ourselves too a walk through the  history. Since it was the month of summer, May, we left home early around 8 am to be there well in time, finish the archaeological walk and be back before noon, the peak of the summer sun!

It opens early and closes late by 10pm so one has a wide time frame to plan their day.

The republic day is celebrated here @ The Lal Quila.

Knowing the fact, we were equipped with sun glasses, hats and a water bottle.

After paying a honarium of RS 10/- ticket, we hired a guide to show us around and take us in details of history.

Dont do this mistake, instead skip the guide and take the headphones, which will have more detailed details and genuine too, no manmade funny stories.

It had nothing to see, offer.

The diwane aam, the pavilions, sheesh mahal, fountaine were all closed.

not allowed to get in, barred with ropes and security.

why the hell do they need a security in that khander.

trust me its nothing li ke its shown in tv, was wondering where do all the jhankian held which is shown so nicely in tv, where do all the dignitaries sit???? 

none of the above questions wee answered by the guide or for that matter none knew..vaguely pointing out..

To our despair, sheesh mahal had no sheesha (roof was supposedly made out of unique glass, wherein many bollywood shootings did happen), and someone broke and stole them all leaving broken roofs and still visitors not allowed to get in....THIS IS INDIAN HERITAGE!!

 

None of the fountains work, grass and lawns ill maintained.. so please avoid such trips, we tend to learn from others experiences.

'SHAME ON INDIAN GOVERNMENT' 

 

After spending 2 years in NCR, sulking every other day, missing an wanting to go back to the Charm of Chennai and its eat outs, Zomato took us to Qla. A Contemporary restaurant amidst the big daddies of Fashion world like Manish Malhotra et al. The european cuisine served in a nest of Kila, an icon of modernity and style. The chef prepared each dish with much affluence as we had decided to leave the menu completely on him and he served us hot on the table describing the flavors to what was brought to us. Minimum of 3K with just a couple of dishes on the table.

Qla left me with another memory unforgettable - met an old school classmate, who made an initiative to call upon and say hi at this resto, but rude enough to bluntly say no after a quick less than a minute chat - probably he saw us getting down from a cab {that too maruti van} and judged our status and avoided further communication. Pity such losers who judge people by their cars - wish we hd come to this place in our BMW7.

 

Fio, a yet another, of of the few places apt for repetition. Planning a lunch/brunch for the special one, on the special occasion, fio would make it all the more special with its ambience and the food.Haven't seen many places serving huge portions as this one, and each to leave you drooling for another. The garden of 5 senses, its location makes it one of the best places to hang around and spend a quality couple of hours. The whole dining experience is worth a visit and a revisit. Heavy on pocket but worth every penny spent for special people on special occasions.

 

En, once again at Qutub, Mehrauli offered us one of the best Sunday brunches and has the bestest sushi on plate.For the first timers like us, would recommend the platters -the set menus, sufficient for a person and gives an opportunity to try small bites of every dish. Guess, Delhi just got lucky!

 

Lavaash, Mehrauli- a cosy cafeteria kind of creative ambience

, the food \; Armenian though average, but makes it a hangout place to chill out with girl friends over a small dish. Only its hummus tasted well/. 

 

 Lodi, The garden restaurant - natural surrounding, romantic setting, place for an unhurried meal. It's popular for sunday brunches and Hi Teas. We loved the feel but the food was just average.

 

Haveli Dharampura @ Goel sahab ki haveli, Chandni Chownk.  A Place that satites your palette with the best of cc delicacies mixing it with the intoxicating flavour and aura. Its an example of the long relationship of Purani Dilli with food bringing the street food on the table served thereby bringing highest baditiens of food culture. This is all i had to give you an insight to the place, book a reservation to dine, a paradise setting.

 

 

                                                                                               WEEKEND GETAWAY :DEL/GGN