Indian food is an important part of the rich Indian Culture and this blog explores this culture in the nooks and corners of India - right from the "Heritage" to the "Hole in the Wall" Eateries in India and moresover in and around Mumbai !!
Saturday, October 9, 2010
Kathiawaadi Food just 25 kms from Mumbai !
As much as a common Indian knows about South India, so does he knows about Gujarat. When it comes to a common man – it’s a Madrasi or a South Indian for him, be it the person, food or culture – despite the fact that Andhra, Tamil Nadu, Kerala or Karnataka have different tastes in food and culture.
Similarly, when you look at Gujarat, people tend to classify Gujarati food as the food with sweetness in everything and that is a general perception. Actually, the food of central Gujarat is sweet and Ahmedabad area being the most prominent one has been the key to the export of the sweet tinge of cuisine. But ideally, in Gujarat too various regions have extremely diverse taste of food to note specially the food from Saurastra, Kathiawad and Kutch !
The Kathiawadi food is extremely tasty & spicy that one needs to keep bottles of water or bottles of the desi beer – Chaas or the buttermilk handy !
Coming from the princely state of Wankaner on the Machchu Kantha (River banks of Machchu) we do make sweet Gujarati daal and rest of the food at home, but we too have the Kathiawadi flavor and not to forget the Spicy Potatoes a delicious delicacy which can see fumes from your ears.
The real taste of Kathiawadi food is something which one relishes across the highways of Gujarat and even relishing the same taste is not difficult in Mumbai – but exactly 25 Kms from Andheri.
Incidentally, me and my wife on our long drive towards Mumbai-Ahmedabad Highway,discovered these joints and we frequent here once a month !!
Bajra Rotla, White Butter, Bharela Karela, Sev-Tameta, Sambhaariyu
One more important fact on Gujju food is that Soorti Undhiya, Dhokla, Sweet Kadhi, Sweet Daal are not the trademarks of Gujju food, they just represent one part of Gujarat and when you check out the Kathiawadi food, you might not find any of these. In the nutshell, Kathiawadi food is not so sweet, but spicy (not very very spicy like the Maharashtrian Thecha) and they bring out the essence of Rural Gujarat
Stuffed Chillies & Garlic
The meal comes with an army of amazing veggies supported by Rotla (Bread of various pulses unlike the common wheat - like Bajra, Jowhar, etc) and White Butter ! The same is supported by sidees like the Salads of Papaya called Sambariyu, Stuffed Chillies, Fried Garlics, Onions, Khichiyo Papad etc.
In the main course there are varieties of dishes, but not to miss are – (1) Stuff Karelas – I always hated even the name of the bitter Karela but when you taste this one, you will change your mind for ever (2) Rasiya Aaloo or Bateta – Spicy Potatos (3) Ringana-no-Oro – Brinjal gravy (3) Vagherala Taja Shaak – fresh seasonal veggies (4) Sev-Tameta (5) Methi Bhaaji (6) Kadi (7) Daal etc. And yes…the meal is incomplete without Curd and Buttermilk in earthen vessels, which is the best way to prepare it !
Khichiya Masala Papad
For the ones with sweet tooth – please don’t expect the usual array of Gujju sweets like Basundi, Shreekhand, Ras malai, Gulab Jambu, Toprapaak (Coconut sweet), Doodhi / Gajar no halwa (Sweet made out of carrot and gourd) – these are the trademark Gujju dishes and not Kathia waadi –here, you would only get just Khajoor Paak – Sweet made of Cocunut and Dates.
The places to eat these are (1) Kathiawaad ne Kaangre which means “on the sides of Kathiawaad” which comes around 7-8 kms after Fountain hotel – Ghodbunder Road crossing post Dahisar-Mira Road- towards Gujarat road. And (2) Kathaiwaad ne Angre – which means “in the backyard of Kathiawaad” which is around 3 kms post the first one. But the first one is a better place where you can sit on the traditional khatia – hand made beds and enjoy your meal till 12-3 PM and from 7PM-11PM though the latter is open 24X7.There are also small time Kathiawaadi joints like (3) Hotel Kathiawaad Bhayenderwaala etc, but the above 2 are much bigger ones !
Rating - Taste (4/5), Ambience (2/5), Price / Value for Money (3/5- A Lavish unlimited order flow would cost Rs 200 per person), Overall - 4/5Hope you savor this different taste of Gujarat and just not brand Gujju food as the sweet food which Radhika, my brother Nirav’s wife does…..she is still to check this out !