Street foods of Varanasi are a new experience for everyone who chose to taste it. Different varieties of foods and cuisines have come on streets of Varanasi to make delicacies affordable for tourists, to give a livelihood to unemployed, to fulfil needs of vagabonds and wayfarers. You would see a big number of foods being cooked across city while roaming on the streets. Each time you would get a new name to hear if you are new to the city or India.
Varanasi is hospitable for everyone who enters into the city. Street Foods are a special luxury to make you afford even best food of Varanasi in a fraction of what five star hotels could offer you after a great deal of wait and money. Street foods can be bought in as small as 5 INR to some 35-40 INR.
These mouth-watering delicacies offer you a chance to peep into the dietary practices of Northern India and Benaras together. These street food stalls and vendors aid to the pocket of every tourist who want good food in least cost. Sometimes people become conscious of the way foods are being cooked on open fire, ovens and tandoor. Hygiene is also a bit of concern for foodies. Every time you enter into a new lane you would find some vessels with boiling oil in which Samose, Kachoris and other foods is being cooked. To sit in a luxury room is unimaginative thing as you would be seated on small benches, some a bit broken and tilted in dim light. But theses roadside eateries are best places to offer you affordable and delicious food that sometimes even five star hotels too fail.
Also, these are time saving as you can’t afford to move every meal time to a hotel in meandering lanes of Benaras. These eateries are now becoming advanced and well-equipped with modern techniques and trained workers. If you are a tourist and wandering in serpentine streets of Benaras you would fall in love with the street foods and roadside eateries of Benaras.
To list some of the street foods of Benaras :
- Alu Tikki
- Some Drinks of Benaras
- Aam ka Panna (In Summer)
Other foods on streets of Benaras are Alu-chaat garnished with green coriander, ghee, yoghurt and sugar syrup; the spinach and besan pakora; the potato and pea samosa with chutney; dalmoth, chura, papad, and the sweet and sour masala flavored kanji to wash it all down. There are also sweets, hot, crisp jelebis dripping syrup, rabri, barfi, chumchum, malai-paan, ladoos, rasogullas.
Hungry would never have to starve in streets of Benaras. Even vagabonds and beggars don’t go hungry in Benaras as people are religious minded and believe in feeding others.Every narrow lane of Benaras has some specialty of food. Like Kachori Gali in Godowlia is famous for its stuffed and soft Kachoris. Some cooks are also famous with their shops for their acumen in cooking foods that would make you always come to that shop once you are in Benaras.You can find Alu-Tikki in any corner of the street. Samosa on some famous roadside stalls or shops with spicy chutney that would leave your tongue stunned. Papad can be taken from shops and stalls. If you are suspicious about taste and hygiene of any food that you are going to eat then you can decide to eat by number of people present on shops. More the acumen higher is the number of people on shop. Every locality has some distinct eateries where you could find people full of commotion. There are often no names for shops and they are recognized by shopkeeper’s name.
Street food of Benaras would enhance your appetite if you are a real foodie. The chilli, black pepper, spices, asafetida and cardamom are the things that make your immune system to acclimatize tropical climate of India.
Famous Street Foods of Benaras :
In foods Kachoris are famous food that is had by all Benarasis in breakfast. These are made of flour rolled on rollers and deep fried in oil or ghee. Salt, ajwain, saunf and other spices are mixed with flour for taste. Kachoris are both stuffed and without stuffed. For stuffing potatoes, asafetida, and spices are used.
Next come Chat, which is a preparation of Potato, pea, spices and other materials. It tastes very good. Chats come in many varieties. Alu-chat is a popular street food.
Then Alu-Tikkis are small rounded balls of potatos dipped in spices. Golgappas are another delicacy which is prepared with flour and maida. These hollow balls of flour are served after filling with water mixed with spices and tamarind.
A list of famous foods with their locality
|Foods and Drinks
||Kachori Gali, Godowlia
|Alu Palak Pakoda
||Pathak Ji Stall, Vishwanath Gali
||Blue Lassi, Vishwanath Gali
Varanasi is a city where man and animal dine together. You will find bulls and calves often loitering and being fed on food remains of shops. This is the best example of man-animal co-habitance. Each and every street of Benaras has some shopkeepers who are famous for their culinary fineness. Generally all shopkeepers in Benaras are known by their surnames.
For street food of Benaras, you would have to stand and eat outside of the shops. The practices of serving people are most eco-friendly. Drinks are served in Kulhads which are broken after one use. Kulhads are small earthen pots. Amount of drink according to your money is measured by the size of Kulhads. Other food items are often served on leaf-plates and leaf-bowls which are discarded after use and mixes with soil after decay. Since, demand for disposable plastic glasses and plates have increased keeping in mind hygiene, these disposable plastic items have become a big source of River Pollution of Ganges and air pollution in case of burning.
Since Aryan culture is found in Benaras, people avoid meat and beef is a rare. Foods are almost vegetarian with some exceptions of patches of Muslim habitations. Foods are generally prepared with Atta (Flour), ghee or oil, maida, and salt, sugar and spices are added to it for good taste and flavor.
Famous Drinks of Benaras :
Most famous name in drinks of Benaras is Thandai. Thandai is prepared with water and mixture of Bhang, a locally grown intoxicant. Thandai is flavored with ice- cream, dry fruits and nuts. People add quantity of Bhang in Thandai with cautious.
Sharbats are a hydrating drink for summers. These are simple mixtures of sugar and water flavored with saunf, roasted cumin, salt and other spices. Since India is home to spices, it’s rare to find here any food without a pinch of spices. These spices are also good for health of people and many of these have healing properties. These are petty medicines that could keep doctor away.
Another drink of Benaras is Lassi. Lassi is a mixture of curd, sugar and water flavored with spices and nuts. A lassi is far better than any cold drink that comes in market of India. These are healthy and fresh without any food preservative.