The capital Delhi was my next stop. Aside from Delhi being a lively city reflecting a blend of modernisation and traditional architectures, it is a paradise for lovers of gastronomy as well as a shopper’s paradise and that was the perfect place to be with the agenda that I had.I was fortunate enough to have had a true ‘Delhi-Wallah’ to show me around initially. It’s a great place to explore but it helped to have a local friend at hand to help me to navigate around as I was on a tight schedule. My dear friend Abhi, she helped me see the true beauty and essential charm of this city and provided the keys to discover hidden treasures and foodie places that a lot of tourists may miss.
My first few days felt like home-away-from-home, her hospitality was just amazing, from arranging ‘bed tea’ from the moment we woke, to freshly made breakfast on the terrace.. the terrace was the hub where we chilled and reminisced.
Here’s a short list of few of my favourite areas and finds:
This is the place to shop for everything related to fashion in Delhi. From street fashion at throwaway prices to big showrooms having some of the best couture, if you want a taste of Delhi’s local fashion, this is the place to be. This is also where I discovered Dolma Aunty Momo’s….
A bustling food joint forever packed with ‘Momo’ lovers from around the city. This place had the most amazing, delicious, soft momos and paired with a fiery red sauce was just an explosion of flavour.
Khan Chacha’s – Khan Market
This had to be the best kebab and most sought after place to gorge on non-vegetarian fast food.
Khan Chacha’s located in Khan Market is literally a land mark in New Delhi serving up the best kebab rolls my hubby had ever tasted… and I thoroughly enjoyed the tikki’s.
Besides the food scene this dusty market space is the most expensive retail space in India. It was great for checking out & shopping for designer wear as tons of designers have a glitzy presence here.
One of my favourites being Ogaan.. a little biased as my friend has a rack of ethnic wear here showcasing her amazing creations. A store full of multiple designers, myriad of fabrics and textiles under one roof. There’s something for everyone at this store.. the Selfridges of Delhi for me..
Other great foodies places in this area were:
Perch wine and coffee house – coffee, wine, brunch and lunch it’s got it all within a trendy setting.
Town hall restaurant – The place to go and have a fix of Sushi
Havemore – Connaught Place
At first glance it didn’t seem like the type of place I would normally look up on holiday but it was recommended as a great place to try the Mutton Burra and we were pleasantly surprised. Traditional North Indian Cuisine at it’s best.
More about the Delhi Nightlife….
Grappa Bar- Shangri-La Hotel, Connaught Place
The design of this bar is interesting in that it’s space is divided between an open courtyard and a contemporary indoor setting, great for lounging or even partying into the night.
Another Indoor/ Outdoor lively space with a trendsetting crowd and a dress to impress entrance policy. Not part of a hotel as most exclusive bars in Delhi but an extension of a new restaurant Kainoosh. With a great selection of drinks it is a fab place for pre or post dinner drinks.
The original branded go to for chaat, snacks and sweets. No visit to Delhi is complete without a quick stop here. We tried the, ‘Matra Kulcha’ here! This was a healthier and even yummier take on ‘Chole Bhature’. Matra Kulcha is undoubtedly that one quick street food nibble that satisfies the soul. The fluffy kulcha along with the tangy and mildly seasoned matars (peas) sprinkled with tomatoes, onion and coriander relish was just so tasty and something you could eat any time of the day.
I loved it so much I tried making a healthier version when I got back home. Toasted pitta replacing the kulcha…Check out my recipe on here.
However the highlight of Delhi as like Mumbai is streetfood. From around every corner to hidden alleyways you can find some of the tastiest foods off a cart. One of my favourites is Aloo Chaat, fried crispy potatoes mixed with masalas and chutneys. It’s all about mixing the right flavours to get that perfect taste.
Don’t we all just love a tasty, tangy Bhel Puri! And I’ve got to say one of the best ones I’ve had during my visit to India was at ‘Bombay Bhel Puri’ in South Extension New Delhi. The perfect combo of sweet and sour.
Rabdi & Jalebi – what can I say about this combo…Rabdi is one of the oldest desserts that everyone seems to enjoy in Delhi.
At first glance it didn’t seem that appealing to me, all I kept thinking was a sugar overload which would take days to burn off! But my friend insisted it was worth a try and I’m glad that I did. I can still remember the taste of the super thin, crispy Jalebi’s dipped into a pot of gooey mess AKA ‘Chilled Rabdi’. It wasn’t as sweet and absolutely moorish as I had expected so we managed to demolish the dessert in minutes.
There is so much more when it comes to food in Delhi, the list goes on. It is astonishing the culinary talent that lies within the streets not just in the established trendy eateries.