City Food – Rabri, Chandni Chowk

Condensed sweetness. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] It is sweet snow. This creamy dessert is an exception to the rule that street food is always inexpensive. In Old Delhi bylanes (think chaotic Chandni Chowk), the humble-looking pavement stalls sell a glass of rabri for 100 rupees. A small bowl of rabri is priced […]

German Bakery

City Food – The Germany Bakery is Shutting Down, Appetite, Paharganj

The end of a sweet landmark. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] It’s shutting down. The German Bakery at Appetite German Bakery in Delhi’s backpackers’ district of Paharganj will soon be history. “The bakery is not giving us good business,” says Muhammed Farid Alam, the café’s manager. “Frankly, we are not good at it.” […]


City Food – Khandani Pakodiwalla, Near Bhikaji Cama Flyover

Delhi’s best deep-fried vegetarian pakodas. [Text and pictures by Mayank Austen Soofi] Some dishes are unlucky to be ghettoized with a certain kind of weather. For some reason pakodas are romanticized with rain. As the sky darkens, cooks dutifully cut the vegetables, coat them in chickpea batter and start deep-frying them. But Delhi’s average annual […]


City Food – Jodhpuri Paratha, Eatopia, India Habitat Center

The crushed dream. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Why should you go all the way to Parathe Walli Galli, in Old Delhi’s congested Chandni Chowk, to have delicious deep-fried parathas when you can get Delhi’s most delicious (and non-deep fried!) paratha in a more conveniently-located place? Let it be known that the best […]


City Food – Kwality Special Pudding, Regal Cinema Building

The sins of our fathers. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] It is extremely creamy and is embellished with canned pineapple. Its bulwark is of stale white bread. The Kwality Special Pudding is served in a restaurant of the same name. Opened in 1939 in the Regal Cinema building in Connaught Place, Kwality originated […]

Kallu Mian

City Food – Kallu Mian Nihariwalle is Dead, Unchi Masjid, Old Delhi

The legendary nihari cook is no more. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Old Delhi’s legendary cook Kallu Mian Nihariwalle died on 18 April, aged 60. He was famous for his nihari, the delicious Mughal-era meat stew that is slow-cooked for hours and is traditionally served as a morning meal. Kallu Mian’s stall at […]


City Food – Sattu ka Ghol, Turkman Gate & Other Places

A gift from Bihar. [Text and pictures by Mayank Austen Soofi] Eclipsed by Mughlai and Punjabi cuisines, Delhi’s parallel world of Bihari food is invisible to all, except the millions of migrants from Bihar. Tracing it is like mapping a secret city: litti chokha in Mayur Vihar, aloo bhujiya outside New Delhi railway station, sattu […]

Al Faro

City Food – Youssef Safwat’s Pizzeria, Venice Ghetto

Pizza from Cairo. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Places are as shifty as time. The ancient Jewish district of Venice is no longer a ghetto. It still has its old synagogues but today it is home only to a few Venetian Jews, who are now dispersed across this fish-shaped city. On its 500th […]