Licking my lips because taste buds started over secretion : )
For me! it is a twist for everyone, Snacks of India.
Eastern flank of the country is all for sweets. The namkeen bhujiya, club kachori, Mukharochak Chanachur enriches the taste of the sweet and flavours the adda.
The Southern part relishing sour and spicy is engulfed with a different taste of it. The banana chips, mandakki, chakli, kodubale is the cuppa accompany and peps up Lungi Dance.
While Northern is the hub with heavy meals like Biryani. Bhujiya, Moong Dal Namkeen as tiffin is a must. And then you have Chakhna for the after office conversations aka Bitching and frothing C2H5OH aka Child Bear
And for West where a variety is always found but the vegetarian diet is of great importance bhujiya and samosas are not left out. The Indore Lahsun Sev has started seducing my taste buds again, by just imagining it.
“Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are”, said 18th-century gastro-philosopher Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin. We are a society of snack taxonomists, our idiosyncratic systems of classification used as a mechanism for bonding with others (I’m an edge person and she’s a middle person!) or fostering debate (political ventilation).
Once you develop the spicy, tangy and ‘chatpata’ taste for the Snacks of India, it rather becomes addictive. From ceremonious eating to occasional, to midnight, and then to mood based, “I am tensed”, “Fed-up with my boss”. Then you adorn the title of the Gs. Gannet, Guzzler, Glutton. Or else binging could only be an accident, every-time?
But as long as you are a connoisseur of the chosen ones, it doesn’t harm you. For that matter, any addiction is bad. .but then, as they say, “To get over your addiction, you have to become addicted to something else”.
I have an interesting story to share of Gopal and Gillu Namkeen who turned his snack addiction to passion and his passion into a business if you are keen! Read on…
One of those Gurgaon meetings, when you overshoot meeting time, the clock strikes 6 pm and you feel, Noida, Oh God! Two to Three hrs or even more. And your taste buds start to crave, mind hammers for food and you are damn hungry.
While I was waiting for the Radio Cabby, I noticed an interesting façade of a small outlet named Gillu Namkeens, with a Squirrel. As if, it was a Keyword Match “Namkeen” with my subconscious mind, which my eyes were searching.
Behind the counter, I met Gopal, owner of Gillu Namkeens. Specialising only in “Namkeens” aka. Snacks. He welcomed me to Snacks of India.
As they say, “The most successful people follow a passion, not paychecks” Gopal was a senior executive at Multi National Company in New Delhi. Office Overtime, late-evening meetings made him binge on all varieties, from local to branded stuff. Like many folks, he was addicted to snacking and later decided to make it his venture.
He pushed towards me bowls of morsels arranged neatly in a plate from different cities of India and Africa all manufactured at his semi-automated workshop in Gurgaon, India. I almost tried everything. Total of thirty-different varieties in the bowl.
The most tantalising ones,
Chin-Chin and its twin sister Kad-Kad have arrived from Nigeria. Made of wheat, soybeans and coconut powder, Chin-Chin is sweet and Kad-Kad is salty.
Corn-Flakes mixture, a taste-bud stumper. Salty, tangy hails from the Heart of India, Madhya Pradesh.
In came glass of hot tea. Irrespective of soaring mercury a glass of tea is refreshing, and a must-have. Clubbing tea with Jeera Nimki made out of cumin and wheat flour is a perfect combo.
Womaniyas!! (a modified form of the word woman) you love your pyaaz, lahsun, masala (onion, garlic and spices). Lahsuniya is definitely going to delight you. I loved it too, yummy!!
I had not imagined savouring a delicacy from the Mughal Era. Mumtaz Mixture, a blend of peas, peanuts, bhujia, lentils and spices has a Royal Taste, with a pinch of Hedag (Heeng) ads to the aroma.
Bangali Jhaal, Bihari Mixture, Andhra Sev and Kerala Mixture. Each one of them is extremely popular tiffin time snack across age groups in the respective states. Anglers in Andhra and Kerala celebrate their catch with Toddy/Coconut Toddy and Andhra Sev/Kerala Mixture.
Warning: Kerala Mixture is quite spicy..in case you burn your mouth ask Gillu for Meethi Mathri a sweet snack that just melts in your mouth.
I cancelled two cabs in the interim, missed five calls. I have 6 different varieties packed and 1 more for the road ahead. I am taking pictures of all the 23 of the delicacies in front of me [look at video below]. Next time, match and buy the remaining ones. Foodie me!
I am glad, discovered this outlet, and meeting Gopal. He has already opened two more outlets within Gurgaon and now getting into Franchising Model. Wow! Within just 2 years, he has done quite well.
Maybe, he will also be the Bhujia Baron of the future. Let me ask him for a pie…Shhh! Greedy me!