Diversity is the best part of Delhi. If you ask anybody the best things to do on a tour of the city, food is sure to top the list. Although heavily influenced by Punjabi culture, famous for its rich meals, the city offers a sweeping variety of cuisines from all over India.
Here is a list of some of the most famous and delicious dishes of Delhi:
Chaat – Famous Street Food
For any Indian, the word chaat is enough to get their taste buds dreaming. Chaat is the king of Delhi’s street food. With an unmatched taste, eating Chaat on a Delhi street is the ideal cultural foodie experience for travellers. Although chaat shops can be spotted in every nook and corner of the city, Old Delhi is the best place to savour some authentic and amazing chaat.
Chaat is a fusion of papdis (fried flour crispies) and dahi vadas (yoghurt-soaked dough) with boiled chickpeas, potatoes, tamarind and coriander sauce, yoghurt, and dash of spicy powders. Papdi chaat is the most common, but there are several delicious varieties of chaat.
Delicious Butter Chicken
Butter Chicken is Delhi’s most common and delicious chicken dish, easily found on almost every menu card of India’s non-vegetarian restaurants. Also known as Murgh Makhani in Hindi, this Punjabi delicacy was invented by a chef in Delhi. The dish is a hot favourite, and every foodie, from the South Indian state of Kerala or the North Indian state of Srinagar, comes hunting for authentic butter chicken in Delhi.
Chunks of grilled chicken cooked in a smooth butter and tomato-based sauce is known as butter chicken or murgh makhani. The most authentic varieties can be tasted in Northern India, like Punjab or Delhi.
Parantha – Anytime Snack
From a filling breakfast to a quick workday lunch, parantha is a multi-purpose food for most Delhi residents. It is an anytime dish that will always satiate your hunger. Rich or poor, everybody loves a parantha. The dish comes with hundreds of different stuffings. Some famous paranthas are- plain, radish, potato, keema, egg, cauliflower, and lentil.
A parantha is a flatbread or layers of cooked dough. This dish is a traditional North Indian staple. Besides plain parantha, there are myriad parantha varieties to choose from.
If you are really hungry and calories are no object, this is the best dish to relish. Rich, spicy, and mouth-watering, Chole Bhature is a must-try dish for any traveller in Delhi. Generally accompanied by a Lassi (a sweet and tangy yoghurt drink), Chole Bhature can be spotted on breakfast menus across the city. A piece of advice: one bhature is big enough to make you through the day, so be cautious while ordering.
Chole is a combination of spicy curry made with white chickpeas and bhatura is fried leavened bread. The dish is enjoyed with onion salad and pickles.
World – Famous Biryani
Biryani, a world renowned mughlai dish, is well-enjoyed throughout India. This rice and meat combination is authentically prepared in a pot with rich spices and aromas. Each city has its own way of making this nawabi dish, but Delhi offers the real Mughlai flavour of briyani. Principally a Muslim dish, it is loved by people of all religions and is often a favourite dish for tourists.
Briyani can be thought of as Indian fried rice. It is made with spices, rice, lentils, meat, and vegetables, but can easily be ordered vegetarian. It’s usually eaten with yoghurt and salad.
Nihari – The Royal Dish
Nihari is a heavenly Pakistani/Indian dish made of chicken or goat meat and traditionally eaten in Muslim areas. As you enter the bylanes of Jama Masjid in Old Delhi, the strong aroma of this signature dish is sure to entice your taste buds. It involves an overnight process of cooking the meat and broth on a slow heat, resulting in a tender, magical dish. The pleasure of eating Nihari is surely going to make you forget your diet.
Nihari is a stew consisting of slow-cooked meat flavored by rich bone marrow and garnished with hundreds of spices. The dish was first developed during the Mughal period of rule over India
Momos or Dumplings
In the last couple of years this dish has earned common street food status. It is a kind of dumpling native to Tibet or Nepal but these tasty morsels have found huge popularity in North India, especially Delhi. This cheaply priced dish comes with non-vegetarian and vegetarian options and you can spot a vendor selling momos almost in every part of Delhi.
Momo is a type of dumpling native to Tibet, Sikkim, Bhutan and Nepal. It is delicately flavored and similar to Chinese baozi and jiaozi, Mongolian buuz, Japanese gyoza and Korean mandu.
Indian Desserts & Sweets
Thousands of dessert dishes from around the world are on offer in this buzzing capital city, but the traditional Indian desserts will leave all those with a sweet tooth crying for more. Extra-sweet, hot jalebis, milk-flavoured Kulfis, rabri floods, saffron milk rasmalai, and soft & sweet gulab jamuns are just some of the rich variety of traditional Indian desserts to choose from.
Most Indian sweets are made with milk, paneer, or khoya, which is made of either dried whole milk or milk thickened by heating in an open iron pan. Sugary syrups and ethnic spices add layers of flavour to Indian sweets.