The superlative way to describe a country is the stories of their delicious food culture. From the foreign domination in a country since the medieval ages our food culture became diverse.
Persian, Mughal, Spanish, Portugal, French, Dutch, and English over the ages laid a remarkable influence on our traditional food culture. Delhi being the Mughal capital through ages is influenced by the Mughlai cuisine. Though Delhi’s street food is divergent. Each street of Delhi hymns the history of their past glory and a passion for food that has been fabricated over eras.
Hereby are some street food which should be tried if you are going to explore India’s capital.
Chaat is the savory snack served as a mixture of potato pieces, crispy fried bread, chick peas, yogurt, onions, sev, amchor, tangy- salty spices, chilies and saunth and garnished with coriander leaves. With the immense popularity in North India, Chaat is praised throughout the Indian subcontinent. As a mad fan of Chaat, we Delhiites have many versions of Chaat: Papri Chaat, Aloo Chaat, Bhelpuri, Sev Puri, Dahi Vada and one of my favorite’s Daulat ki Chaat.
2. Chole Bhature
The king of Indian street food. Chole bhature is a Punjabi concoction of spicy curried chickpeas and puffy white flour bread called bhature served with chopped onion and tangy mango pickle and accompanied by green chilies and lassi. Delhiites craze for this toothsome dish is persistent.
Golgappas is an addictive street snack in Delhi and in many parts of Indian Subcontinent. It is mainly a puri which is hollowed and filled with the mixture of flavored water called pani stuffed with tamarind chutney, chili, potato, onion, chaat masala, and chickpeas. Golgappas has almost a dozen different names that change from region to region. While the recipe isn’t the same. For Delhiites it is golgappas, East India calls it phuchka or gup-chup. While for Maharashtra it is panipuri.
Delhi’s best-known paranthe wali gali (lane of parathas) is the home for paratha joints located in remote place in old Delhi’s Chandni Chowk area. Parathas are the most preferred breakfast item among the common households. It is a flatbread, which is fried and stuffed with a healthy splash of butter, vegetables such as mashed potato, grated cauliflower, and radish. Delhi’s very own paranthe wali gali offers delicious paranthas which include Rabri paratha, Mirch paratha, Lemon paratha and what not.
With the remarkable history of more than 500 hundred years, jalebi has roots from West Asia popularly known as Zalibiya or Zalabiya in ancient period is the lip smacking street food in Delhi. This sugared dish is a key to every Delhiites heart from the times of Mirza Ghalib, who mentioned jalebi in his books which is known to enhance mood. It is best served with curd, Rabri, milk in many parts of India.
This triangular piece of heaven is jalebi’s close companion that keeps Delhi hearts beating. Samosa is a fried dish, triangular pastry pockets, with a savory filling of peas, potato, onions, lentils or meat. Indian samosas are mainly vegetarian. These fabulous samosas are incredibly affordable.
7. Chana Zor Garam
Chana Zor Garam is a street food which is normally made with black chickpeas which are flattened and deep fried in oil. High in protein seasoned Chaat is a good appetizer. As Delhiites love for finger food is undying
8. Ram ladoo
The fried dal pakoras or ram ladoos are golden bolls of lentils which are light and fluffy, crispy on the top and soft inside. The crunchiness of the radish and tangy chutney relish it completely.
A legacy of Mughlai cuisine, kebabs got their origin from Middle East Millions of years ago. It is based on grilled meat and many other variants served on skewers best- known kebabs dishes in Delhi are shish kebab, Shami kebab, Galouti kebab, Kakaori kebab and much more. Chandni Chowk and Hazrat Nizamuddin are known for best kebab outlets.
Delhi has taken it to the whole another level when it comes to rolls no matter where you try them. There are many versions when it came to Delhi. There are many varieties like Aloo Roll, Bhurji Roll, Paneer roll, Chap Roll (Soyabean), mutton Roll, shawarma, chicken Roll, Kathi Roll and many others.
Nihari is a masterpiece from the royal kitchens of Mughal Empire. Having a glorious history for more than 400 years. Nihari is a stew cooked overnight consist ingredients like beef, lamb along with bone marrow served as a regular breakfast item in old Delhi mainly near Jama Masjid and Daryaganj areas after the fair prayers. Delhiites love for this Mughlai dish can be witnessed at Haji Noora and Kareem Hotel near Jama Masjid.
12. Chole Kulche
The Spicy and luscious combination of Chole and Kulche is everything to Delhiites. This saporous partnership between Chole and Kulche is very famous among the different class sections of Delhi.
Known to be a vegetarian omelet Chilla is one of the highest ranking fast food in Delhi’s street food list. A thin layer of gram flour stuffed with few healthy vegetables is a great appetizer. There are many varieties available in Delhi including moong Dal Chilla, Besan ka chilla, paneer chilla, and Suji ka Chilla.
14. Aloo Tikki
One of the best-known street foods to be tried in Delhi. Made from boiled potatoes, onions and various spices this Aloo Tikki is to die for.
15. Kachori Sabzi
This appetite Delhi street food is very famous among North India. This stuffed Kachori is deep fried and served with aloo Sabzi and garnished with coriander and green chilies.
16. Nan- Khatai
To all the cookie lovers Delhi’s Nan -Khatai is a must try. It is a shortbread biscuit popular among Indian Subcontinent. Made of six ingredients this Nan- Khatai is a jaw dropping fast food of Delhi.
17. Buddhi Ke Baal
Buddhi Ke Baal also known as candy floss, cotton candy, tooth floss, sugar clouds, Hawai- Mithai in East India is the most prominent sweet in Delhi since ages. Made with the sugar and water syrup which is heated to its molten state then spinning it to produce cotton candy. It is the popular street sweet in all age groups of Delhi.
We Delhiites love Momos. The dish is believed to be of Tibetan origin gained immense popularity among children and adults in Delhi within the brief period of time. Predominant varieties in Delhi are steamed and fried Momos served with the fillings of meat, paneer, cabbage, Khoa and potatoes with a fiery chutney.
19. Dahi Bhalla
Dahi Bhalla also was known as Dahi Vada is the don’t miss fast food of Delhi, it is prepared by soaking Vadas in thick yogurt topped with pomegranate seeds, yellow raisins and tangy tamarind chutney and spices.
Falooda is the most promising desserts since the Mughal Empire came into existence. From early times Falooda was one of the influential cold dessert that helped the Muslim rulers to win the battle against the heat. Traditional Falooda is the mixture of rose syrup, vermicelli, sabzi (sweet basil), jelly, milk, and a scoop of ice cream which can to find at any old Delhi hotel. There are many new Indian versions of Falooda which includes the lip smashing Kulfi Falooda.