City Food – Gular Leaves, Around Town
The secret of the mutton.
[Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi]
If you love mutton curry, you cannot ignore gular. The leaves of this tree are the food of goats. Gular, the common fig (Ficus carica) native to West Asia, is cultivated in North India. Delhi gets its supply from the farmlands of western Uttar Pradesh.
The truck carrying gular leaves from Bulandshahar arrives in Delhi shortly after midnight. It stops at the traffic light outside Turkman Gate, one of the four surviving Mughal-era gateways leading to the walled city of Shahjahanabad. The waiting traders crowd around the truck; the leaves are priced at 700 Rs for a quintal and sold on for 10 Rs per keg.
Most gular leaf stalls are located in Delhi’s Muslim localities like Matia Mahal and Mehrauli, where goats are reared as pets. Bought for as little as 1,000 Rs, a kid in a Shahajahanabad home is brought up with as much indulgence as a pug in a Defence Colony apartment. The only difference being that after a few years the goat ends up in the mother’s cooking pot.
In Shahjahanabad, the unnamed shop selling gular leaves at Matia Mahal Chowk is open daily from 7 am to 3 am. “We sell about seven quintals daily,” says Nawabuddin, the man sitting at the counter. He runs the store with his brother, who takes over the night-shift duties.
A few steps away pavement butchers sell goat meat. Every eatery in Matia Mahal bazaar makes dishes from every part of the goat, including the head. Brain curry, ginger-flavoured chhote ka paya (toes), aloo salan (rib), fried kaleji (liver), gurda keema (kidney) and kapura masala (testicles) are some popular delicacies. Since gular is the source of these dishes, I nibbled on a leaf to ascertain its taste. I’ll prefer mutton curry.
The essence of goat curry
Food for the flesh
10 Rs per keg
For my kid
To the last gram
Another goat owner
Food of Delhi
Goats won’t mind
It’s a party tonight
It’s a party tonight
Thank you, gular
Wittiest post ever read by me on Delhi Walla!
wow bhai, what an obscure little known gem…amazing… u rock.
Btw, curious, can someone tell, how many kilos a goat eats in a day?
How much an adult goat sells for?
How many years it takes a goat kid to mature into an adult?
Just wanna calculate ROI and effort… curious 😀
Also, wanna know how do people feel about lovingly rearing and growing up with a kid themselves and then having that goat curry for own 18th birthday? mixed emotions? emotionless? Sometime ago saw an award winning japanese movies where school kids raise a pig as a classroom project and then at their passout/graduation, they debate if they should eat it, send it to slaughterhouse, or pass on to the next class?
@ Dear Vishal
The population of Non-Vegetarians are more than the population of vegetarians in the world. They have not been eating meat since you started the calculations. Try to understand the theory of food chain on the planet earth. Beef and Chicken are still preferred in every corner of the world. Moreover you only are not the world.
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