SILIGURI Street Food Tour, Part 1/3 I Deem Ghughni + Chilli Sekuwa + Hong Kong Market & Momo Gully
Welcome to Siliguri, the land of the three Ts—Tea, Timber, and Tourism—a city in West Bengal located on the banks of the Mahananda River. Today, we will join Prerna from 'Our Guest Tour' company on a food tour. Welcome Anubhav to Siliguri, the Gateway of the North-East. Let's start our food tour today.
Where are you going? Do you set up your shop in the evening? Yes What is your name? Are there chickpeas in it? Badri Sonu Come again? Sonu, Sonuji How long have you been doing this? 10-12 years, since 2010. You sell sprouts? You make Chaat out of Chickpeas, Green gram? Yes. Please prepare nicely. Please put less green chillies. Here, take some. Please rub your hands well with this. So, Sonuji has been doing this for 10 years.
I have been doing this daily. Not here, in Bihar. You used to work in Bihar? Yes. Yes, it has been 40 years since. You've been doing this for the past 40 years? Yes Which part of Bihar? Yes, in Bihar. Yes, which part? From Muzzafarpur, in Bihar.
God bless you! That's my birthplace. Normally, we eat chickpeas and green gram at home. But today we will have a special version of them, called 'Bhaja'. Yes.
Chana Bhaja? I'll eat, I'll eat, I'll eat! I'll also eat! If we talk about the demographic composition of Siliguri, there are Bengalis, Nepalis, Marwaris... Yes. And there are Biharis and Punjabis as well. Punjabis as well? Yes, there is a Punjabi neighbourhood called 'Punjabi Para' where many Punjabis families have settled. In terms of population, it would be 60% Bengalis and rest 40% would be a mixture of all of them.
But in terms of language, Nepali, Hindi, Bengali, and English, broken or passable, is mostly used by everyone, be it the vendors, shopkee pers, or rickshaw-pullers. So the food culture will be very diverse here? There is a lot of overlap between the food of different cultures. Like if you come and eat at my house, it will not be a typical Nepali meal. It'll have some Bengali influence, a bit of Marwari influence. We cook it that ways. Siliguri, as a whole, is a good model for India which has become quite polarized now a days.
A lot of people live here in harmony. So, that is good about this city. Plural and diverse, right? Yes, absolutely. Good job! This feels great! Thank you, Bhaiya. And what about the spoon? Giving. It's good.
That's it for now Sonuji. Thank you. I wish you a pleasant evening and that you sell all of your stock today. Good luck, bye. So, I have my mother with me today while we are doing the market tour. Namaste! Right now, we are at Seth Srilal Market, mainly popular for clothes, shoes, and a lot of other items. From here, we will go to the Chinese market, which has a lot of Chinese food and products. So, let's begin!
What do you find in the Hong Kong Market? You'll find Chinese goods, electronic and food items, body sprays, make-up and skin care products. For electronic products, there is no warranty. But you can buy. It works fine only. Many food items, warm blankets. Just like Delhi's Gaffar Market. Yes yes, exactly. Likewise, it's the Hong Kong Market in Siliguri where you find a second-copy of everything. Yes yes. From shoes to clothes to hairdryer and other electronics, you can find a second-copy of anything.
This is a must-visit place for every traveller in Siliguri at least once. How much are these glasses for? Are these from Rayban? Please take whichever one you like? These are Rayban? Yes, Rayban. What's the price? INR 300. Tell the price at which you intend to sell. You are really going to buy? Why, of course! Do you think I'm fooling around? No, No. Superb! I got reminded of one of Nawazuddin Siddiqui's films.
A film is currently being shot. I can't remember the name of the film. You're looking like Salman Khan. Isn't it? It suits me well. Should I pack? I hope the glasses don't have any power? Otherwise, I won't be able to see.
We can remove the glasses and put the power. How will you put the power? I can't put it on. I won't be able to see far away. No worries. You have watches as well? No, I don't have watches. What is the best rate you can offer for the glasses? INR 150? My rate for the first item I sell today is INR 200.
From where do you source these prouducts? I don't know, we get it from here itself. From where? Here itself, in Vidhan Market. So you buy things from Vidhan Market and again sell them at Vidhan Market. That's incredible! When will the lottery results be out? Today evening at 8:30 PM. Today at 8:30 in the evening. What is the price of one ticket? It ranges from INR 30 to INR 1,120. Please give INR 35 for a ticket.
Can you give me one ticket? How will I get to know the result? You can know it from here or it'll be shared on your phone. Do you pay so much cash to buy tickets eveyday? Not everyday. My INR 6000 had got stuck in a lottery before. I got it back. So, I'm buying a ticket with that amount. You're buying again? Yes, once more. Give me the bundle worth INR 30. So, I've just bought a lottery ticket.
1 lottery ticket is INR 6. I've taken 5 tickets. Let's see if we win or not with this. We are exploring the market and will check the result at 8 PM. Nagaland State Lottery. So this is legal here? Yes, absolutely legal. Nothing is fake. Arya Bakery. Arya Bakery is one of the oldest bakeries of Siliguri.
It has existed since when I was born. So, let's try their famous chicken patties! Can we get chicken patties? Yes. Make three. Have it or take away? We'll have it here. Make three.
This is the chicken patty from Arya Bakery, that Prerna has been having since she was a child. Yes, I have been coming here since childhood. [Prerna's mother]- Not only her, but I have been coming here since I was a child. We've been coming here for generations. Awesome. Every layer is crispy and how fluffy it is!
Also, the taste of the spices in which they cook the chicken has stayed constant over the years. It sticks all over your mouth, so you need to be careful. Tea would have been a perfect combination with this? Sure, we'll go to a place that serves Tea in clay cups after this. I specially like the outer layer of this patty. Very tasty. And the spices inside are delicious.
That's what. I has stayed consistent over all these years. No change. You liked it? We ate it all. It was really good. In many other shops, the patty sticks to the roof of your mouth. This one wasn't like that.
Yes, this one is very light and crispy. Shall we move on? Let's go! The next one is called Kabita Bakery. Namaste Dada! Can we get cheese puffs? And masala puffs? Please give a mix of cheese and one masala puffs. 250 g. So you were telling me about some bread on which they apply butter? Which one is that? Dada, do you have that sweet bread? Can you give me, the small one? This bread is very soft and sweet. We put some Amul butter on it and have it with tea in the morning. It is absolute heaven! You should try it once.
Earlier the packaging was in white colour. It has slightly changed now. But, this bread is so tasty. We are coming here for the, I don't know, I am already thirty plus, so... ...since 4-5 years old this is going on Every bakery has it's own specialisation.
Dada 4 cups of tea. And without sugar Without sugar? Yes. One without sugar, others with sugar No, two without sugar. Yes, two without sugar.
Listen, is there lemon? Yes. I want lemon. Then we need one lemon. One lemon. Mine is with milk. Yes, and rest is with milk.
We will have lemon tea later. Lemon tea, with this.. The name is Siliguri Krishna Mobile Tea. Do you keep roaming? You've kept the name "Mobile Tea". That's the name, but it does not move.
Do you take it away in the night? It stays in Asansol. Dada, you do this work full time? So you do just this? What do you do in the first half? In the morning? Yes, before 3... Shopping in markets. In the bazaar. And there is other work. What work? Work at home, shopping and other work. Oh, so housework. You are from here only? From Siliguri? Yes.
How many years has it been, dada? Of this shop? Yes. 20 years. 20 years? You've made amazing tea. This is your lemon tea. And this is ours, with milk. We don't have to dip this right? No, we don't.
My tea is good. Even mine is. How's this? Ma'am was right. It has a slight spiciness to it. Masala. Yes, there is a little bit of masala in this. I don't know which masala, but there is also a little bit of cheese powder.
He won't give goat cheese. But there's the smell of the cheese. In the inside layer, in this layer It's less, but... It's a masala cheese puff. Exactly.
This can be enjoyed best with tea only, right? Yes, it tastes best with tea. More than coffee, it's better to have with tea. Do you serve chai in kullads? It's called bhad, right? Yes, bhad. It used to available earlier. It is rare nowadays. There are paper ups everywhere now. Yes, paper cups or even plastic cups. The tea is fantastic. The proper flavour of the leaf is coming. He mixes the CTC with the leaf tea, right. A lot of us do the same at home.
We mix the Darjeeling tea and leaf tea for the flavour, and CTC for the colour. A lot of people do that. Like I told you, overlapping and mix and match, we do that. It was good. Thank you, you made us really nice tea. Made you drink, not eat! Haha, it was really intense, strong tea. We will visit again, soon.
One jhalmuri. Dada, please keep the spice less. Boiled potatoes, onion... Chickpeas Mixture Black salt Masala. Which masala? Mix. Mix masala. Yes, very little. And this? Pickle. Mix pickle masala.
Yes, very little. And this? Yes, you can put little of both. This tamarind water, is it sweet or sour? With jaggery, it's very tasty. You make it with jaggery? Wow! I feel like I am roaming in Kolkata! Would you like to taste first? No, you go ahead. You wanted the less spicy one. Thank you! How is it? It's good, it's amazing! Make some for ma'am too. Everyone in Siliguri comes for this jhalmuri, it's very tasty.
Dada, how many years have you been working here? 35 35 years?! And you've been setting up your shop at the same spot? Yes, it stays within this market only. What name did you say? Boiragi. Would you like wai-wai? Yes, please. I have never had wai-wai chaat before. Me neither! I have had it with water, or raw, but never in a chaat.
So, this is wai-wai masala...and what is this? Oil? The masala itself contains oil. Oh, so this also contains potatoes? the wai-wai Onion Chickpeas Mixture. Black salt, masala Red chilli Pickle masala What pickle is this, bhaiya? Mix.
Will we put tamarind in this? Yes, now. The sweet one? So sweet chutney. And tamarind? This means you are adding wai-wai instead of muri.
This has to be photographed! It's amazing! It's very tasty. And the flavour of the tamarind is coming out quite well. This is crunchier than the muri.
I prefer this, because noodles are roasted, so its more crispy. Yes, this is proper street food. This is the masala, we make it ourselves at home. It's not store bought. Dada, what time do you come to the bazaar? I come around 12:30 pm.
You know the Hanuman Mandir? It's our first day here. There's a mandir on the side. There's a market there from 11.30 to 1 pm. From 1 pm, it travels from place to place. From 4 pm, it settles near the mandir. And then you come here in the evenings? Yes, then we come here. So, who's your main customer? Those who come to shop, or the shopkeepers themselves? Shopkeepers and others...it's a mix.
Thank you! How much for the both of us? 50 rupees. 50 rupees or 50 taka? 50 taka. 50 taka in Bengali! Here you go, dada. 50 rupees. Okay then, dada. Thank you!
Let us eat while walking. Yes! So now let's visit the famous Momo gali, where the shoppers visit for a quick bite. We'll have to sit on the benches here and eat. This has cabbage, onion, peas and carrot. And ginger. Ginger and garlic. So this entire market is vegetarian? You don't get non-veg anywhere? No, not in this area.
So, the name of the area is Momo Gali, but you get everything here...chowmein and all? All fast foods, yes. So, what all is put in the chutney? Tomatoes... and masala Why is it that you get only vegetarian food here? Because a lot of people from different communities come so probably they'll have some problems in veg and non-veg.
But sitting here in the winters and eating momos is a different feeling altogether. This is the only spicy chutney that I can eat! How did you like it? It was very tasty. This is a really nice, simple, basic momo as compared to other areas. You both eat here every time you come to this market, right? This is a very people popular and pocket friendly place.
Yes, like people come to the market and eat chaat, here they eat momos. It's very filling also. Okay, dada. Thank you! It was very nice. Let's try the puchka in Siliguri. You've tried it in a lot of places in Kolkata. Try the one in Siliguri too. This is quintessential Bengali street food. Dada, what is the price of the puchkas? 10 for 3. Okay, we'll all take one-one piece each.
What all do you put in this? This is potato mixture? Yes, potato mixture. And chickpea. And masalas...coriander, cumin and chili. Green chili also. Yes, don't put the green chili. What about gondhoraj lemon? If you want, yes. Gondhoraj lemon...without it, there's no fun in eating. Yes, please put the lemon in it. You'll put it in the potato mixture or the water? The mixture, it won't taste good in the water.
Okay, put it in the potato then. Where are you from? From Vaishali zila in Bihar. What is your name? My name? Shridhar. Shridhar? Yes. His name is Shridhar. Here goes the lemon. Now the real taste of Bengal will come!
Let's try this delicacy...my puchka has broken apart! Okay, let's eat first and then we will drink the water. Really sour water! Amazing! This is really tasty! Okay, brother. Thank you. We will come again to Siliguri to have your puchka! You stand in front of Sri Sari shop, Seth Sri Lal market, Siliguri.
What time do you come? We have no fixed time. We come as we wish. We do not have any fixed time. Sometimes we come at 12, sometimes we come at 2. Oh so you are here post the afternoons. But your business booms in the late evening? No, business has totally gone down due to Covid.
Yes, business is really bad. The same story everywhere. Don't worry, it will pick up soon. Especially during the coming Navratras and Durga Puja. Thank you, Shridhar ji. Are you giving peas with the litti? Or is it separate? This is ghughni and potato chaat Oh I've had litti many times. Leave the litti. Oh, such small tikkis? Oh no, this is for something else. Oh, look, I am putting my hand on the hot tawa, and nothing is happening! Putting peas in the tikki.
And then they will put...what is this? Papri? How much does one plate cost? 30 rupees. Oh god, you are selling really expensive tikki! It's not tikki, it's a tikki-ghughni plate. Oh, this is really hot! You're taking revenge from us (laughs) It's a double plate, still its hot. This is tikki-ghughni.
The tikki is coin-shaped. So it's a bite-sized tikki, and the tawa is cool now. They make it beforehand, and add the ghughni on top. Onion, papdi, different chutneys, masala, red chilli, and salt You're from Bihar? Which zila? Buxar Hmm, this is really tasty. How is it? It's good. You've made it really well.
Thank you, Kishan ji. I had great fun having your tikki and ghughni. We will eat this, and sing your praises. How much for this? 20 taka. You are from Bihar as well? No, UP. Where in UP? Ghazipur. So you have been putting up your stall for how many years? Do you make this at home? How is this made? We fry it. No, so, it's raw chana ? Yes, then we boil it and then fry it. And it's authentic name is chana jor garam? Yes, chana jor garam.
There is a sing named after this, right? Yes, there are many! Yes, it's a very old song. Very nice. In Siliguri, people like spicy food - jhalmuri, puchka, momos... Yes. Okay, thank you, Om Prakash ji. Oh, do you turn on the light here? When? Later. Right now, the market lights are on. Yes, I remember this from my childhood.
There used to be smoke emanating from this, now its water. This is a vegetable chop, he sits here from 5 pm. Today we are going to try this famous vegetable chop. Does the same masala go in both? No, its different. And what is on top here? This is bread crumbs from the bakery.
This is a veg cutlet with carrots and beetroot. If you press it down, it becomes a cutlet. Since when are you putting up shop? Some thirty years.
Coated with bread crumbs, the filling is made of vegetables - carrots, beetroots, potatoes. peas, beans and all with masala. The outer skin is really crispy.
You have a nice job, as chop is cooked, you eat it. Just one a day. Just one? In the evening Thank you so much, dada. Delhi Food Walks. Now let's try anda-ghughni. It's unique here, they give an egg in the ghughni. How do you make it? What is this...ghughni, peas...
People prefer this in winters, right? Oh wow!! Oh wow. This is amazing! Do teach this to us. What masala is this? Ground cumin? Chaat masala. And this? Rock salt And this? Tamarind Water. And raw onion. This is green chili. Please give less, very less. Can you teach me how to peel an egg? It always gets stuck.
Here, give it to them first. May I do this? It's much easier with the spoon. After seeing her, I have done it at home. Oh, let me do it.
Should I turn it? Is it correct? You can employ me here! Is my job confirmed? I will peel eggs here. What a nice technique. I'll taste one spoon from here. I don't have the yellow part. Take the white one. It's not bad.
This is like ghughni chaat. Exactly. This is very tasty. Especially for those who like eggs. Look at the crowd. Yes, in the evening, she stays only after five. Unbelievable! Really tasty! How much is one plate for, didi? 25 taka...for one egg. One anda-ghughni. One is in Kolkata, and one is here.
Thank you so much, didi. If you too, want to come to this shop to eat anda-ghughni, then come to Siliguri. In front of Khadims. Okay, thank you didi. Capsicum and peas Potatoes and tomatoes, boiled together.
Do you put it separately? No. You put quite a lot of butter. You'll put more butter? Oh my god. Spicy red chilli. And after that, salt. What is this? Garlic paste.
Lemon, and the main masala. A lot of masala goes into this. The unique taste of the bhaji comes from which masala? It's made separately. What all goes in it? Can't tell, its a secret. And you're putting spring onion in this too. And then mixing it all together.
And now this is mashed and mixed. We are at Chowdhury Pav Bhaji, which was earlier Bombay Pav Bhaji. They have actually parked their car wrong, they were blocking everyone's way. Now they have realized. They could have parked it further along the U-turn. We thought that the Delhi traffic was impatient. But you can see that no one stops for a moment in Siliguri. So much traffic.
We are at Chowdhury Pav Bhaji shop. We have taken Pav Bhaji here. It was earlier known as Bombay Pav Bhaji. The original store selling Pav Bhaji was called Bombay Store, which used to be next to this. ..in the late 90s and early 2000s. But that closed and this has now become more famous. People generally come in the evening to have Pav Bhaji. It's very tasty. You can taste each vegetable distinctly. Secondly, nothing has mixed in together completely.
And the bun is really soft. She is making Sekuwa chili, which in Nepali is Barbeque chicken, the one you get in skewers. The chicken has already been barbequed, she will make it into a chili. Sekuwa literally means something that has been cooked on fire. Barbequed chicken in chili with onions and capsicum and all that. So, we'll try this, for today? Let's have it. Let me try. We had a lot of street food today.
Yes, a lot and to tell you the truth, i don't think w ehave even scratched the surface since we only covered market areas. Due to limited time, we did what we could best and obviously, we covered a lot. But there's still a lot to explore in Siliguri. So our tour for tomorrow? That will be more of restaurants and established eateries. We'll start at breakfast so again we will meet in Siliguri tomorrow for breakfast.
So, thank you so much, for today. Thank you for inviting us and hopefully you liked the street food of Siliguri.