What are the best Delhi food experiences?

Answers from Our Experts (1)

Nirvana Bhatia

From vats of milky chai to griddles of spicy chaat, the city’s street food beckons at every corner and provides for some of the best food experiences in New Delhi. If you’re afraid of “Delhi belly,” many of these treats can also be found at Haldiram’s in Chandni Chowk, where everything is packaged hygienically. Here are a few snacks you absolutely must try:

1. Gol Gappa. Use your thumb to punch a hole in one of these hollow balls of flour, then fill it with spiced potatoes and dip it in a pot of masala-flavored water before stuffing the dripping concoction into your mouth for a tasty burst.

2. Chole-Bhature. Two deep-fried, puffed pieces of bread and a bowl of chickpeas sprinkled with onions and green chilies forms this quintessential working-man’s lunch.

3. Parantha. The hole-in-the-wall joints in Chandni Chowk’s Parantha-Wali Gali all brag that their families have been making paranthas, warm bread stuffed with potatoes, peas, cauliflower or cashews, the longest in this lane (we noted seven generations of cooks as the record). Regardless of the lineage, the paranthas here actually do melt in your mouth and you’ll be hard-pressed to stop after just one.

4. Mithai. Indians always celebrate good news with boxes of these milk-based sweets, which come in a variety of shapes and colors. It’s easiest just to point to whatever looks appetizing, but kaju barfi, cashew diamonds covered in a layer of silver foil, and laddoos, balls of flour cooked in sugar, are popular favorites.

5. Masala chai. Forget about that frothy Starbucks version, and start quenching your thirst with thimble-full glasses of milky tea brewed with cloves, cardamom and cinnamon.

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