Mayapuri's junk market, Asia's largest car scrap market is the last place you expect to find good food. However, there is one thing that brings many Delhiites to this market other than business- 'Mayapuri Ke Famous Chole Kulche'. Chola kulcha is a staple Delhi street treat but few serve it like them. Soft bread mix with a unique stir-fried mixture of onions and tomatoes, to be enjoyed with dry flavourful chole. Running for 15 years, this is undoubtedly the best Chola kulcha in town.
When we landed at Mayapuri Junk market there was no sign of the famous chole kulche wala. Some people around it were already asking questions about their favourite chola kulcha. Around 11:45 am, the owners arrive in an eight-seater white car with their ingredients. They clean the area, set up the utensils and start the cooking process. It takes them a good hour and 15 minutes to set up the paraphernalia. By 12:30 pm, a good number have gathered near the stall. Until the preparation is made, the group waits patiently appreciating the process and scent of their favourite chole kulche. Finally, At 1:08 pm, the first plate is served.
The long queue of people outside the shop is the best proof of the taste and flavour offered by the shop. The mesmerizing aroma around the shop makes it impossible for you to ignore it while passing through. The exciting buttery flavours of Mayapuri Chole Kulche will take you on a happy ride. The plate consists of thickly textured, spicy chole, three thin medium size kulchas dipped in butter with the added flavour of soft tomato and onion. The added tangy flavour of the achaar works as the cherry on the cake. This delicacy can be enjoyed just for Rs 60. Apart from chola kulcha, they also offer fresh lassi and chhach (namkeen lassi) at Rs 40.
CitySpidey talked to the owner of the Mayapuris famous chole kulche, Karan Singh. At first, Karan Singh seems like a serious man but later spills some inside details. With their business booming, they have shifted to a permanent shop 2.5 years ago. However, they have not left their hand cart. Karan says, "Our forefathers have been involved in the same business. This handcart is lucky to me and we cannot leave this behind." Recalling a fortune-changing incident that increased their business manifolds, Karan says, "A YouTuber visited our stall in 2014 and put it out through his channel. I wouldn't say our business was down before this. However, the growth has been unprecedented since."
Talking about his special recipe, he says, "We use all the same ingredients, but our style of cooking is what makes it different. Plus, any special ingredients that we may use are our brand secret."
Before going there, I had heard stories about the owners of 'Mayapuri ke famous Chole Kulche' being rude and arrogant, but an incident that followed helped me form a perspective. An old man came to the shop requesting to give only chole. The sellers refused initially. After a little more insistence, the sellers agreed and provided the old man with just Chola. It was only a small gesture but proved that the sellers have goodness in their hearts which surely transfers to their food preparation too.
How to reach there?
It can be a little tricky to find the shop as it is inside the junk market and other shops are trying to copy the original one which can confuse you. The nearest metro station is Mayapuri which is on the Pink Line. You can take a sharing e-rickshaw which will take 10 rupees. Tell the rickshaw driver to drop you near the Gulab House bus stand. From there, take the lane to the left of the Regalia Banquet, Mayapuri Phase II. It is a 2 mins walk from the Regalia Banquet, and you will be at your destination.
If you have any confusion with the time, let me help you with that too! Mayapuris famous chole kulche opens at noon and starts serving by 1 pm. They run till 6 pm but you would do better to reach in time as the place draws a huge crowd which surges with every hour.