The ongoing Saras Ajeevika Mela at Noida, is a food heaven for any foodie. It is also a great opportunity to acquaint yourself with the best of regional cuisine from all over the country. The only issue is that today is the last day of the fair and you must visit it before all the delicious smelling food stalls wind up.
We met Pooja from Haryana and asked her about the speciality of this region. She says, "Haryana is famous for Rabdi, Bajre ki khichdi, Cholia, Chaach- Lassi, Kachari ki sabzi. People of every place are loving our preparations in desi ghee and also enjoying Kesariya Kheer, Rajma Kadhi, Shahi Paneer and Bajre ki roti."
Fluffy Chole Bhature and crispy Aloo Parantha from Parnala, Punjab were are other winners here. They are being served here hot and with with the classic Lemon pickle, jaggery, ghee. Other must try at this stall are the gaajar halwa, salty or sweet lassi, besan barfi. Also serving the sarso ka saag makki ki roti, which nobody can miss from relishing.
A group from Patiyala, Punjab, also marked their presence with a special Gajar ka halwa. Chindrpal, Shamsher, Sukhdevi And Lakhvindra were preparing the real cuisine for what Punjab is known for. The oldest lady from their clan was making Gajar ka halwa with a folk song on her lips, and also explained the whole recipe in her pure Punjabi accent.
She says, "After peeling the carrots, wash them and grate them finely, then fry it in ghee. (this is the secret point), many people directly add in boiled milk, no first ghee roast the carrots, after proper roasting, add milk and sugar. Switch off the flame and add the raisins, scrapped coconut and then you can enjoy this piping hot savoury". Their makke ki roti and sarson ka saag were also getting a good response.
Other stalls from Punjab are serving butter Chola kulcha, Punjab masala tea, sweet lassi, masala roll, dal makhani with butter naan.
As everyone knows that Chattisgarh is famous for its signature dish Bafauri and its kusli red ant chutney, but they marked their presence by serving khurni airsha. It is a kind of special thali that holds angakaar roti, mixed chilla, pakoda, Chhattisgarhi special samosa, Khoya Jalebi and rasshi malai.
A lady was seen making boondi kadhi and also shared the secret recipe. Her name is Bhu Bharti and she hails from Chhattisgarh. Says, "This boondhi kadhi is tempting if you put ghee onion garlic with minced green chilly in the tadka after the mustard seeds splutter, and then pour the curd and besan mixture. And serve it with hari mirch chila." On asking about that did you prepare the red ant chutney? They say, "Will the visitors here eat that? We knew they will not so we prepared dishes keeping their tastes in our minds".
The Assam stall offered their famous Masor, Tenga, Pitha. They are serving here delicious momos, fried rice, noodles. Mushroom fried rice, Assam tea, Steam sticky rice and a bar of very special mushroom chocolate.
Ghaziabad stall serves delicious Bajre ki roti, Shahi paneer, Kadhi pulao, Hara bhara kabaab, Aloo parantha, Gobhi paranta. Sarita from Siroragadi, a small village in Ghaziabad, present here with her team says, "People of U.P Delhi thinks that we can have it later too, but the people from another state are relishing our Bajre ki roti. The pearl millet roti is a wonder grain for them, they say we do not find it there in our states."
A group from Sidhhidatri Sanjeevani Sangha, Guthigaru village, Karnataka were religiously enjoying and making some authentic south Indian delicacies.
They were serving the herbal chicken, after properly marinating in the mixture of curry leaves, mint coriander leaves, green peppercorns, black peppercorns, ginger garlic paste and the basic masalas which they brought with them and serving it with neer dosa and coconut chutney. The highlight here is the 5 fruits and 5 vegetables Halwa and the 5-star kheer. Dayasheela the main chef says, "It takes 6 hours of constant stirring else it will burn. This halwa is super nutritious and it consists of desi ghee and 5 kinds of fruits and vegetables such as apple, banana, pineapple, papaya and pomegranate and a few dry fruits are also added."
The state of Bihar is famous for Litthi Chokha, Sattu parantha, khaja, khubhi ki lai, anarsa, tilkuta. From a stall manned by Ranju devi, Hema devi, Priyanka devi, Damyanti Devi are serving the piping hot samosa, chandrakala sweet dish, litthi choka, gulab jamun, Jalebi with rabdi, kubhi ki lai, dry fruits barfi and sprinkling dry fruits powder while serving. On seeing samosa frying, we asked what is special in this samosa and the difference between the regular samosa we get here in North, they say, "We have different stuffing in Bihari Samosas, the crispiness is same, the process is same, but the filling is different. We add the ginger and chilly tempering onthe potatoes masala, and they are comparatively spicy than the one found here in the north. A must-try thing!"
In another stall for Bihar, the non-veg items like Champaran mutton, Dehati chicken with litthi chokha, Chull bull were served and people from all-region and age groups were seen relishing.
Mizoram also marked the entry. Mizoram which is known for its special tea (ZU), have not included it in the list of menu. Their mocktails are pretty good in quenching the thirst and rejuvenating you after a tiring day. Mocktails like Blueberry, Hawai Paradise, Red Valley, Blue Lagoon are nice. They are also making chicken noodles, fried rice, chilly chicken, chilly potatoes.
Uttrakhand also marked the entry with the authentic Jhanghoora ki kheer served ice-chilled with Pizza, Veg burgers and French fries. On asking about the rest of the famous delicacies like Aloo ka gutkha, Veg burgers, Kapaa and chainsoo, Kajal says, "We started that but not everyone can understand the taste and we are here to please everyone with our skills so we are putting some delicacies and making globally recognized items in our way which everyone is loving"
Kerala food also gained maximum attention from the foodies. Chicken biriyani, Chicken curry, Kerala parotta, Kothu pakoda were some of the items on the menu. People were seen delighted in getting food packed for their families too.
Sikkim, famous for the Momos, Thupka, Gundruk Phagshapa, seal roti Served all this here too. Arunachal Pradesh team seemed full full of joy and vigour came with momos, chowmein, rolls chicken soup, bamboo shoot, Chambai rice etc.
Maharashtra cuisine is serving three types of thalis. One is Mutton thali which includes mutton masala, jowar roti, tambada, etc. The second thali is the kolhpuri thali which includes rice, jowar roti, chicken masala, and other items like Puran poli, missal pav, and the third thalis the Green thali.
In Uttarpradesh stall has a huge list of things to try such as Muradabadi chicken biryani with raita salad and green chutney, chicken korma with rice, chicken Kaju keema, Kadai chicken, fish curry, chicken kabab, Chola bhatura, just to name a few with few addons like gulab jamun and khullad chai.
Other stalls for Uttarpradesh are serving aloo kachori with Dahi chutney, masala tea, kadhi pakoda with bajra roti, matar paneer withmultigrain aata roti with the special tea. Andhrapradesh served their speciality of Pothrekulu, Sunniundalu, chicken kabab, tandoori chicken, chicken dum biryani, matka biryani.
West Bengal stall is here with all kinds of fishes for the fish lovers. They are serving pomfret fish fry, bhetki fish fry, prawn masala fry. In the biryanis they have Hilsa fish biriyani, Kolkata dum biriyani. Apart from this, the west Bengal also has three kinds of thali for non-veg lovers- mutton thali, chicken thali, fish thali.
If someone says true love does not exist, make them taste biryani! Telangana marked their entry with some special Hyderabadi chicken dum biryani, vegetable dum biryani and Sarva Pindi.
Tripura stall is serving the sweets and savouries like Gud tea, Malpua and Rabdi, Sattu ka Sandesh, Kheer ki puli, Mitha roll and some spicy items such as like Masala pav, Veg pakora.