Delhi is popularly known for its street food and the versatility of flavours amongst them. But did you know that the authentic Delhi Street food is only available in Old Delhi, and everything else is just a westernised version of it. So much for being the Food Capital of North.
The narrow gullies of Old Delhi narrate many stories through the overwhelming variety of street food that they offer. They’ll inspire you to pull out your cameras, explore new ways, and sometimes, even get into the kitchen and recreate.
The old city shares an intimate relationship with food, one that was founded during the Mughal era. Here, traditions rule and history is served sumptuously garnished with culinary secrets that have been passed down through generations.
The Edgy mind decided to list down 5 places in Old Delhi which you must visit at least once if you want to experience the authenticity of Delhi’s Street food.
- Natraj Dahi Bhalla
Natraj is located near Bhai Mati Das Chowk at the turning to Chandni Chowk metro station. It was started in 1940 and is run by Inder Mohan. They have only two items on the menu – dahi bhalla and aloo tikki. Both are worth a taste.
2. Lala Duli Chand Naresh Gupta and Kuremal Mohanlal Kulfiwale in Sitaram Bazaar
For kulfi, you can’t do better than these sweet shops in Sitaram Bazaar. Here, these creamy concoctions are at their best. Lala Duli Chand Naresh Gupta is one of the oldest outlets and is known for its fruit flavoured kulfis especially, the seasonal mango kulfi. These places also offer a new breed of innovative flavours like tamarind, rose, aam papad and kewda.
3. Old Famous Jalebi Wala
Located at the Dariba Kalan Road in Chandni Chowk, the jalebis here are the real deal. A look at those lovely swirls frying in hot oil, then delicately dipped in sugar syrup and you just can’t wait to eat them. This shop has been around since 1884. The jalebis here are fried in home-made desi ghee. The jalebis are soft and are cooked over coal-fired. Another thing that interests me is that they use desi khandsari sugar and not the regular one to make the syrup. That’s what we call pure pleasure.
4. Lotan Chole Wala, Chawri Bazaar
The cholas here are top of the pile. For those who love their spice, this is as good as it gets. Been on the streets since 1977, the cholas are served with potatoes in a red hot curry, garnished with coriander and green chillies. You’ll always find a crowd buzzing around this humble establishment. Reach Barsha Bullah Chowk and ask for Lotan, almost everyone would know about him
Mohammed Aziz was a cook in the royal court of Mughal Emperor. One of his sons, Haji Karimuddin is known to have moved to Delhi with an idea to open a dhaba and that’s how Karim Hotel was established back in 1913. All meat lovers must make a pit stop at Karim’s for their heavenly kebabs and divine mutton nahari. We just can’t get over the Nahari.
We agree transformation and change are necessary and good, but nothing like authentic food. After all, Old is really Gold!