Kolkata is the city of joy, which means joy and pleasure in every form. Life, love, celebrations and most of all food. Being a Bengali myself, I can vouch that food is the only true form of love. We love to eat and we love to feed. Hence, this blog is dedicated to all the foodies and those who wish to try the food adventure.
As we are discussing food, let’s begin with a different note. Street food, one place which usually people avoid, but hey! It’s worth trying for. When you’re hungry and want to have something light and tasty, street food comes handy. It’s easy in the pocket and also on your tummy, still yummy!
The exciting sight and the luscious smell, how can one resist it! Every street in Kolkata is famous for some of the recipes. Whether it is a simple chicken stew or spicy kebabs or authentic Chinese food, you will love it all.
Let’s take a tour of few of the famous street foods of Kolkata!
Starting with the most loved, famous and anytime snack is Jhalmuri. It is available everywhere in Kolkata, wherever your eyes seek. The puffed rice (Muri) is mixed with fried daal, peanuts, chopped onions, tomatoes, coriander, chilli, masala for seasonings, other crunchy crisps and a few drops of mustard oil or Mango pickle to top it. The whole thing is mixed in a metal can or a tumbler to stir up the mustard fragrant in the mixture and served in a newspaper bag. Eat it whenever you want, compliment it with tea or any of your favourite drink.
An iconic snack loved by all and is known by different names across the country. This beloved street food starts with a puri a hollow round chip with a filling of mashed spicy potato mix and then dunked into tamarind water. The rule is that you have to eat it one bite and once you bite, the explosion of crunchy spices and flavour will create a sensation with watery goodness inside your mouth. The feeling will leave you totally at bliss!
Kolkata’s street food will be incomplete without Ghugni Chaat. Split yellow peas cooked with homemade spices and potato is one of the favourite street foods. Totally awesome in taste, served in a small leafy bowl. Hot peas are mixed with tomatoes, green chilli, onions, tamarind and lemon juice and toppled with sev. You eat this heavenly treat with a wooden spoon and make your mood happy in a flip of a second.
Mostly famous in Mumbai but Kolkata always makes their own version of every Indian chaat. The recipe includes puffed rice, the one we used in Jhalmuri, boiled potatoes, red onions, coriander, green chilli, crunchy curls, dry ingredients and finally dressed with lots of tangy, sweet and spicy tamarind sauces. Everything is mixed in a paper bowl or Thonga and served with a wooden spoon. You will feel the fresh taste and aroma of sweet-tangy- crunchy and spicy in every spoon. The deliciousness does not end here neither it will quench your thirst, you will keep on wanting more and more.
Very popular across India but this dish also has a Kolkata version which is commonly known as Papri Chaat. A bit different recipe from the North Indian Delhi street food. Here it is sans yoghurt rather a lot of chutneys and sauces to make it extra spicy. Deep fried fritters are laid out and as a topping, boiled potato in a spicy mix is spread along with mix-mash of sauces. It is the yummiest chaat you will ever have, nachos in Kolkatan style!
Kolkata being the heart of all foods and Chinese will be not on the list is a little weird. To give you a small information that Kolkata is one of the places where you can get authentic Chinese food. A major portion of Kolkata street food have Chinese food influence and Veg Chow is the daily dose of hunger-busting. Noodles cooked to the perfection with lots of veggies and sprigs along with sauces to give it a spicy and Smokey taste. Beware! since this is awesome in taste and too much spicy to handle.
Healthy and tasty yet pocket-friendly, what else could have been? yes, it’s fruit salad. Easily available and good to eat, fruits cut and toppled with chaat masala and lemon juice. Every gully and nukkad in Kolkata, fruit salad are selling like hot favourites. Health friendly and awesome for your taste buds.
Momos steamed/ fried
Kolkata is a place where you can get all sorts of food around the world and authentic in every sense. Coming to momos, a Tibetan dish consumed mostly in north-eastern India but also in Kolkata. You can try veg, chicken, pork in places like Terreti market or China town in Kolkata. The hot, steamed or fried dumplings are served with a red chilli sauce and a bowl of hot soup.
Kati or Kathi roll
Kolkata street food tour will not be completed if you didn’t have a bite of Kati rolls. One of the most famous street foods and is easy to consume. There are many famous roll joints in Kolkata and some of them have excelled in creating different variations in taste. Though it is almost like a Burrito but it’s made and treated in Indian style. It’s a wrapped up parantha with egg, onions, tomatoes, chicken or mutton kebabs or paneer (for vegans) and lots of sauces. Sheer pleasure in every bite, extremely tasty and one roll can make your stomach full.
Ice cream cone
It is the all-time favourite irrespective of all ages and seasons. Choose your scoop among the array of flavours and fill your cone first and then your heart. Easily available and it will uplift your mood in no time. Have it anytime of the day and bring an aura of happiness around you. Though it is favoured mostly in summers and treated as desserts but Ice cream does not have any particular season or time for consuming.
Thus, we come to an end of my blog and street food tour of Kolkata’s few famous street foods. Hope you have enjoyed it and try one of them as you land in Kolkata anytime!