Timms moved from Edinburgh, Scotland to live in Delhi, India.
She is a food writer, blogger and cook. Since launching in
March 2009, her blog, Eat
and Dust has been voted one of India’s top 5 food
blogs by Good Housekeeping magazine and was chosen Blog of
the Week in The Times of India. We thought Pamela was the
perfect person to consult about Delhi's best street food.
I put together this
street food list for the Guardian Newspaper to coincide with
the Commonwealth Games. I’m not sure how many athletes
or officials managed to get beyond the Games Village canteen
to sample Delhi’s incredible street food but for any
JourneyWoman intrigued by Delhi’s wonderful street food,
these are just a few of my all time favourites.
Ashok and Ashok -- If you only eat out
once during your stay in Delhi, head for Ashok amd Ashok:
the chicken and mutton kormas here have been known to
make grown men crumple. As well as boasting an edgy
gangster heritage, A&A make chicken korma every
day, mutton korma on Wednesday and Saturday (invariably
sold out an hour after opening at 1pm) and biryani.
The meat just melts, hinting at a magical mystery masala
(apparently up to 30 different spices), pistachios,
and a devilish pact with the ghee (clarified butter)
tin. Go to: 42 Subhas Chowk, Basti Harphool Singh, Sadar
Thana Road, Sadar Bazaar, Old Delhi
Best kebabs: Ustad
Moinuddin -- For just a few rupees you
can eat some of the finest kebabs in Delhi. On Lal Kuan
close to where the great Urdu poet Ghalib once lived,
you’ll find the beef kebab maker Ustad Moinuddin.
As you wait your turn, you’ll have time to watch
the master at work, packing soft meat on to skewers,
judging the exact cooking time for optimum succulence
before tipping them quickly on to plates and into waiting
hands. Forget Bukhara; this is the real deal. Go to:
Lal Kuan, at the corner with Gali Qasimjan, near Chawri
Bazaar metro, Old Delhi
Best kulfi: Kuremal
Kulfi -- The Kuremal family have been
making kulfi (ice cream) in the old city since 1908.
They turn out over 50 varieties, including pomegranate,
tamarind, rose and custard apple, and also make a wonderful
stuffed kulfi: mango or orange flavours stuffed into
fruit skins. Go to: Kucha Pati Ram, off Sitaram Bazaar,
near Chawri Bazaar metro, Old Delhi
Best paratha: Kake
di Hatti -- Head down to the Old Delhi
spice market in Khari Baoli, and once you’ve inhaled
the fumes from a thousand sacks of chillies, turn into
Church Mission Road and order one of Kake di Hatti’s
divine tandoor-fresh paratha's. There are many flavours
but favourites include potato, cauliflower and mooli
(radish). And don’t miss the faluda (a rose-flavoured
creamy vermicelli confection) at Giani’s next
door. Go to: Church Mission Road, Khari Baoli, Old Delhi
Best kheer: Bade Mian
--Bade Mian's kheer shop (oppposite Badal Beg mosque
in Lal Kuan) quite simply sells the finest kheer (cardamom-laced
rice pudding) you’re ever likely to taste. I never
come home with less than a kilo! Go to: Lal Kuan, near
Chawri Bazaar metro, Old Delhi
Best breakfast: Shyam
Sweets -- Old Delhi is a wonderful place
for breakfast – try the bedmi aloo (deep-fried
spiced bread with a spicy potato curry) at Shyam Sweets,
about half-way along Chawri Bazaar, on the right if
you’re going towards Jama Masjid.
Best sweets: Chaina
Ram -- Regularly voted the best sweet
shop in Delhi. Try the Karachi halwa, laddoos and other
treats cooked in ghee at this Sindhi shop on Chandni
-- Around the Jama Masjid area, stroll along Matia Mahal
(also the home of the famous Karim’s and Al-Jawahar
restaurants) and stop at any of the little stalls –
it’s almost impossible to eat badly here. One
highlight is shahi tukda, labelled by one enthusiast
as “bread pudding on steroids”. The kebabs
and biryanis in this area are also pretty special.
||Best way to get around
-- It’s a good idea to hire a cycle rickshaw to
get around Old Delhi. I recommend driver Rahul
Pal (reach him on +919 871 533849). He
speaks perfect English and knows all my favourite haunts.
habits and an ounce of prevention...
don’t preach total obsessiveness when it comes
to one’s culinary habits in the tropics and
developing countries, but I do suggest common sense
and some caution, as well as some preparedness. 'Boil
it, bottle it, peel it, cook it …. or forget
it' still makes a great deal of sense. But let me
plan to boil your water, just bring it to a rolling
boil for a minute or two. Any longer will rob you
of your fuel and your water. When it comes to bottled
water …buyer beware. Look for that unbroken
seal, and don’t patronize that cute boy selling
bottles from behind the taco stand. If you are a bit
further off the proverbial beaten path, you might
want to disinfect your water with products on the
market (ask your travel doctor for her/his suggestions),
or use one of the many water filters that are available.
Beer, wine and carbonated drinks should all be safe,
though the ice added to drinks may definitely be suspect.
I say, avoid the ice completely.
that is cooked is definitely safer than that skewer
of mystery meat being offered to you at the bus stop.
So by all means, eat in the markets, but eat what
is cooked, make that 'well cooked', and cooked in
front of your very own eyes. Fruits should not present
a problem, just peel them. If you just absolutely
crave that Caesar salad, then you really need to soak
your romaine in some chlorine, a.k.a. bleach (sodium
hypochlorite, 5% - 2 drops per litre).
(Mark Wise is a family doctor and
runs The Travel Clinic in Toronto, Canada, He is the
author of the book, THE TRAVEL DOCTOR, and is the
chairman of the board of Canadian
Feed The Children. This is some of his practical
advice for avoiding stomach upsets and diarrhea when
we are off exploring the world.)
to read more about avoiding stomach upsets in India, click