Category

Food

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Doodh, dahi, malai, makhan aur ghee!

Food, Indian Belly

“Now be a good boy/girl and finish your glass of milk” is a statement most Indian kids are familiar with. From the time we are born our mothers, grandmothers, aunts and all the other elderly women in the family insist that we drink one glass of milk in the morning before we go to school and one in the evening before we go out to play. Such is the national obsession with “doodh” that the milk mooch (moustache) is worn with a lot of pride.

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What are your favourite chai partners?

Food, Indian Belly

Ask most Indians and they’d agree that there’s something about the garma garam chai that makes chilly winter mornings warmer and sultry summer evenings tolerable. On weekends, there is no rush, you can hold a cup in your hands and absorb the beauty of the sunrise. On weekdays, when you’re running around like a headless chicken the same cup of chai (or cha as my maternal grandmother would say) when multiplied by three or sometimes four helps keep your sanity intact. In short, a cup of chai simply makes one’s life better. As for me, I’ve always been more fascinated with what comes along with the chai than the chai itself. Think conversations, people, favourite chai spots and snacks; yes, especially the snacks.

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चाइ की दुकान

Food, Horn OK Please, Indian Belly

Masala chai…cutting chai… kadak chai…garam chai…chai malaai maar ke! You’re familiar with these sounds, aren’t you? You’ve heard them on childhood train journeys to the nanihaal(maternal grandparents’ home) orescapades to the mountains, saving yourself from sweltering summer heat. They’re the chants of tea sellers or chaiwallahs, emanating from stalls that dot the streets of urban and rural India. This beckoning is a charm, a talisman, bearing witness to our formative years.

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