Naan Therapy

Or should it be 'paratha' therapy …

Why not a chaat truck?

with 2 comments

A plate of papdi chaat

A plate of papdi chaat

Everyone knows a taco truck in California – the truck that come rolling around with sounds of simple jingles and sells fresh Mexican staples with their mouthwatering salsas. Fresh, yummy and cheap is what a good taco truck fare is.

My question is this – what not an Indian version of the same serving chaat and tea?

In the afternoon, when my vampire’s nest (I call my windowless, sunless, fluorescent tube lit, office cubicle that) is at its dullest, I often find myself craving for some samosa and chai. On a winter afternoon, when the incessant rain is doing its worst damage to your mood, a plateful of samosa is the only escape. Sex would be better but samosa is safer. Surely.

I think you can divide the world into three groups, those who love samosa and chai, those you are going to love samosa and chai and finally, the monks. What is there not to love in a perfectly proportioned bit of savory potatoes or minced lamb surrounded by chewy, flaky, crispy fried dough?

Sweet and spicy yam, chickpea salsa and lentil cake chaat

Sweet and spicy yam, chickpea salsa and lentil cake chaat

And, chai? Thankfully, samosa goes well with all kinds – the sweet and spicy tea from northern India, as well as the upper class snooty liquor from the finest estates of Darjeeling. Some say that all that sugary teas are bad for diabetes prone south Asians. A few others complain about the caffeine. Poison it may be, but it is delicious poison.

Coming back to chaat – in Hindi, chaat means to lick, so finger licking good is what it is. One of the quintessential chaat element is papri chaat – bite size flattened pieces of crispy, flaky fried dough served with thinned yogurt, bits of potatoes and/or sprouts and/or garbanzo beans, coriander and tamarind chutneys, smoky cumin and spicy chillies.   Imagine a papri chaat right before a long and boring meeting? Your mouth (and possibly your intestines) will be on fire thus keeping you from dropping off in the meeting.

Instead of the jingles, I can imagine the chaat truck beeping popular Hindi film song tunes. Hmmm … nice. Btw, can I patent protect the concept of a chaat truck?

Note: “The way to keep your health is to eat what you don’t want, drink what you don’t like, and do what you’d rather not.”- Mark Twain

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Written by Som

November 7, 2008 at 2:56 am

2 Responses

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  1. All this talk of chaat just made me very hungry!! I do think the mobile chaat and chai shop would be such a fantastic idea!

    Tahsina Smith

    June 7, 2010 at 2:54 am

  2. […] is the chutney. There are infinite variations. I like coriander chutney since this can be added to chaat, but you can substitute with you favorite chutney or […]


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