Delhi Street Food- A Common Man’s Royalty!

Delhi Street Food- A Common Man’s Royalty!

Kebabs, Tikkis, Chaaps and Tandooris – the extravagance of Delhi Street Food can be deemed fit to be an empire in itself. The taste of Delhi Street Food has always struck out as a regal and spectacular affair. It transcends beyond the word chaat and explores a more mature palate and delivers a more unique flavour – richness. The depth and flavours of these dishes cannot simply be replicated at will. It is a skill that has been passed down for generations and is still taught in the homes of these families who ventured out into the universe of street food quite a few years ago.

Just like its palate, the history of Delhi Street Food is extremely rich. As per our research, Delhi’s street food forms a relationship with the dynasties that resided there almost 500 years ago. The interaction of these dynasties with the rich spices, fruits and vegetables of India helped curate a more defined approach that regarded food as sophistication and not just survival. It has been seasoned with the stories that have raised generations. The invasion of India by the first wave of Mughals introduced new flavours that would take over the entirety of the culinary prospects by a storm. After a few years of not straying from the Persian way of things in the kitchen, bawarchis decided to blend the Persian and Indian flavours which are now known as the Mughlai Cuisine. Delhi’s Street Food culture also stems from the extravagant meals that the Mughal emperors enjoyed with the members of their court. One such member was Akbar’s wazir Abul Fazl. Known for his enormous appetite, Abul was widely known for making the royal kitchen prepare thirty-seven kilograms of khichri. As he sat to enjoy the lavish meal, anyone was permitted to join him through it. There have been many others in Mughal Darbars that have enjoyed such lavish meals in great quantities. This goes to show that the food enthusiasts in Delhi are part of a culture that is deeply ingrained in the history of this territory! Once a royal affair, the Mughlai cuisine has spread to the streets of Delhi and now serves as street food in many locales. But how did that come about? After the dynasties dissipated, the old cooks from the courts or as they called themselves – bawarchis, were left unemployed. With nothing but raw talent, these bawarchis took it upon themselves to make a living from selling their goods and delectables on the streets of Delhi. Once a thriving business in the gullies of Delhi, this era of commoners dining like kings is now dwindling away. The reason lies in the fact that many youngsters have chosen to pursue a variety of different careers.

Well-renowned dishes on this menu like Seekh Kebab are derived from Turkish origins. As war broke out in Turkey, the soldiers were forced to live out their lives in unsuitable terrains. Due to harsh conditions, the soldiers were forced to cook and feed themselves. The easiest method would be to cook over an open fire. Impaling chunks of meat into their swords and holding it over open fire gave them the luxury of cooked meat as well as the option to cook their meal evenly. The word shish or seekh means sword and kebab means to roast. This method was popularized amongst Turks and was used by them wherever they went. Due to this advancement, this method of preparing food reached India and melded with the culture that prevailed over here! As Mughlai food fights to stay in the gullies of Delhi, Meatington has studied this diverse history and curated a menu that pays a tribute to the culture and history of this cuisine. The founders of Meatington have been brought up around the rich and diverse Delhi Street Food culture. As people from a desi household, food is an expression of love. Being able to serve good food is an essential part of being a loving member of a household. To do so without compromising and bargaining with the taste and quality of the food, and also reserving time to spend it with your loved ones was one of the main motivations for starting Meatington. Enamoured by these rich and indulgent flavours, Chef Saigal questioned the history and the procedure that came to such delicious conclusions. Learning from the streets of Delhi, Chef Saigal has learned how to replicate these intense flavours and aromas and inculcated them into his own cooking. As he believes practice makes perfect – that’s why, there came a point after which he wanted to experiment with the flavours he had perfected over this time… This led to the bloom of many flavours that are now widely used in our beloved Meatington products! Another reason was that the comfort Delhi Street Food brought to the communities in Delhi was mercilessly ripped off during the big lockdown. People were cautioned not to consume food prepared outside their homes. Not being able to enjoy the simplest of pleasures as a Delhiite was a driving force behind the conceptualization of Meatington. Bringing that lavish affair to the homes of people who have often enjoyed it brought joy and comfort to founders – Ashutosh Malik, Neeta Malik and Chef Sachin Sahgal.

With signature and best-selling dishes like Chicken Seekh Kebab and Dahi Ke Kebab, Meatington has tried to replicate the fusion of ingenuity and tradition and made it possible for us to bring regality onto our plates in under 7 minutes! All three of our founders are skilful and motivated with a mantra in mind that drives them every day- “We intend to bring Meatington to every kitchen around the world!” Meatington has already revolutionized many kitchens all over the country. The tendency to hold its originality while replicating the rich taste that has been passed down from generation to generation in a much more traditional sense. Here is something we got back after a customer tried our product. “Family gatherings used to be a hectic affair- cooking multiple courses, entertaining the guests and juggling miscellaneous work all over the house. Introducing Meatington to my kitchen has been a lifesaver. Going from toiling in the kitchen to being able to spend quality time with my family, Meatington has pulled through every promise it made!” All of them agree that the Delhi Street Food culture has been the Godfather of Meatington and its disintegrating nature has given us the drive to place it in every home before it is long forgotten.

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