My Food Is My Identity: Is It True?

Most Indians love a hot cup of masala tea; it may be the one drink that connects our nation. In many cities, guests get the tea as the welcome drink irrespective of whether you want or not. But when I see tea, I see age-old colonialism, British rule, coercion, and the rise of opium and…

Reliving History: In Defense of Game Meat

Food, essential for existence and survival. What we eat and how we eat are secondary. The ever-growing ‘chant’ to go vegetarian as if the non-vegetarians are doing something morally wrong and must be punished, but it is in common knowledge that in the beginning we ate simply ate food, vegetables or meat, to endure on…

Churpi Cheese: An age-old local cheese of the Himalayan Region

India is popular for its spicy food, the chicken and other bird dishes, red meat and fish but hardly we talk about our local cheese beyond paneer. If when we talk about paneer, it gets an English name, cottage cheese which has its controversy. I think we should stick to the name “paneer”, simply because…

A Mutton Khichda to Mark Muharram

The first ten days of the holy month of Muharram are a commemoration of the battle of Karbala. In the first century of Islam, there was a brutal war between the grandson of Prophet Muhammad, Imam Hussain, and the Umayyad ruler, Yazid I, a tyrannical and un-Islamic leader. At Karbala, (a province of modern-day Iraq)…

How does 18th century no-knead bread taste?

A few days back I saw a post on bread in one of the food groups I follow on Facebook. This post was very specific in collecting more information about Sour Dough bread (which is one of my favorites). The fellow members were quick to jump and help the information seeker. This post is dedicated…

Authentic Food: Does it matter?

Yesterday morning when I woke up, I found a platter on my dining table laden with delicious stuffed parathas along with some homemade mango pickle complemented with regular juice and boiled eggs. These parathas were quite thick, unlike that of the parathas made by my mother. My mother was eagerly waiting for me to wake…

Baklava Gujiya

As a kid, I loved playing with colors. We’d get up early morning and get ready for the festival. Friends from the neigbourhood will come home and paint you in the same color. Ofcourse, in the beginning it was hard to recoganise who is who but we somehow used to recoganise each other eventually. But…

Gharana-E-Rampur- A Look Inside Tehzib and Cuisine Of Rampur

History is full of stories of war and conflict that remind us of the control that rulers and governments have always tried to enforce on the inhabitants of a land. It was one such conflict in 1774 AD between Nawab Faizullah Khan of Rohilla Dynasty and Nawab Shujauddaula of Oudh, and the English troops of…

24 Hours in Amritsar: A foodie guide

In my opinion, there are a few communities that sincerely take their food seriously: Bengalis, Muslims and Punjabis. From the way they prepare dishes in the kitchen, to the way they host their guests, everything is unique and elaborate. My trips to Amritsar always prove to me how warm people from Punjab are. The Punjabi…

Christmas Bells

Stuffed Roasted Bell peppers with Quinoa and Andhra Style pulled chicken, baked with thyme and rosemary and tossed in Indian Spicy Aromatic Masala Christmas for me means the vibrant colours, cakes and cookies, lots of song and dance and bonfire and Christmas bells. I remember as a kid, going to a friend’s house and help aunty…

Between Breads: Ramcharitamanas, Mughals and Age-Old History of Breads

“Here with a Loaf of Bread beneath the Bough, A Flask of Wine, a Book of Verse – and Thou Beside me singing in the Wilderness – And Wilderness is Paradise enow.”  ― Omar Khayyám, Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam Bread, the quintessential side dish that goes with most the dishes we eat, from Pasta to Vada Pav,…

Delhi ka Zayka: Past, Present and Future

Be it the kings and queens, darvesh, sufi and shayar, corporate employees or a school going kid, Delhi and Delhi’s food have a lot of mureed (fans). There is no one definition of Delhi, everyone who came here and has stayed has defined the city according to their own perspective. Malikzada Manzoor Ahmad says “jo…