City Food - Dilli 6 Chaat Bhandar, Outside Siri Fort Auditorium

City Food – Dilli 6 Chaat Bhandar, Outside Siri Fort Auditorium

The mother of all snack stalls. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Without doubt, this has to be the naani of all the roadside snack stalls. The unusually huge counter is filled with multitudinous dishes—aloo chaat, dahi bhalle, papri…

City Food - Shekhar Chai, Anand Vihar

City Food – Shekhar Chai, Anand Vihar

The 24/7 tea stall. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Here’s a persuasive reason to patronise a pavement chai place. The owner is so committed to his stall that he has its name tattooed on his arm. Shekhar Chai…

City Food - Mohabbat ka Sherbet, Matia Mahal

City Food – Mohabbat ka Sherbet, Matia Mahal

Drink of love. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Love has spread like a virus. This being the chaotic Walled City, it is more appropriate to say that love has leaked along the gallis and kuchas of Shahjahanabad like…

City Food - Moradabadi Biryani, Around Town

City Food – Moradabadi Biryani, Around Town

Battle of the biryanis. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] They had it coming. Big powers squabble among themselves only to lose out to smaller ones. Take megacities like Delhi, Calcutta and Hyderabad. They are forever fighting over whose…

City Food - Fresh Fruit 'Roller' Ice-Cream, Mathura Road

City Food – Fresh Fruit ‘Roller’ Ice-Cream, Mathura Road

Too much natural. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] A moderate crowd of idle pedestrians have gathered about the cart. Their faces are full of wonder. This so-called ice-cream is looking so different from the factory-manufactured nutty-buddy and chocolate-chip….

City Food - Spring Roll and Other Fries, Khandani Pakodawala

City Food – Spring Roll and Other Fries, Khandani Pakodawala

New in old. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Icons are in a shift. Delhi’s Central Vista is changing, and Delhi’s Khandani Pakodawala is changing too. This legendary place has been making a dozen different kinds of pakodas since…

City Food - Barfi with Mask, Dilshad Garden

City Food – Barfi with Mask, Dilshad Garden

Double bonus. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] No, you don’t commonly spot this delicacy on the streets. Certainly not with this combination—brown barfi with face masks. “I used to sell only barfi, and then the bimari arrived,” says…

City Food - Nafees Khan's Sherbet Stall, Gali Suiwallan Street

City Food – Nafees Khan’s Sherbet Stall, Gali Suiwallan Street

A steady landmark. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] He’s here, still all smiles—or so it seems, for he’s in a mask. He has survived through the two surges of the coronavirus pandemic. He is the face of a…

City Food - Sattu Ghol, Turkman Gate

City Food – Sattu Ghol, Turkman Gate

Summer’s landmark. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The Mughal-era Turkman Gate marks the border between New and Old Delhi. It’s been here for centuries; its stony ramparts a symbol of steadfastness in this world of constant shift. Now,…

City Food - Deepak Namkeen and Papad Store, Subzi Mandi, Gurgaon

City Food – Deepak Namkeen and Papad Store, Subzi Mandi, Gurgaon

The world of salty savouries. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] You might never know the names of all the birds, or all the flowers, or all the trees, or all the constellations in the sky. But to learn…