“There is no sincerer love than the love of food.”
Food has been different things to different people. While it is a matter of effort for some it is a concern of satiety for the others. But one can’t deny that food is a rocking kick starter of anyone’s life.
With the love and lust of the gourmet satiety a variety has evolved over time. Hotels mushroomed, roadside dhabas started doing brisk business and the food trucks began to become a huge hit. The concept being, ‘Tasty Food Is My Birthright and I must have it’!!
The roadside eateries in India have a zest of their own. They cater to a curious mix of the multiplicity for their mottled customers.
In Maharashtra the Dhabas are often referred to as Gardens. For a north Indian it is a kind of hilarity to have the Gardens catering to their dhabha taste buds. But don’t go by the name, the flowers therein is the diversity of local and customized cuisines. Few of these overtime have become their trademark specialties.
When after a long drive on a highway you sight an overpoweringly busy roadside garden “maharashtra’s dhabha”, know that you are propitious fish bait for the day!!
Urali Kaanchan is a charming eatery on the curb about some 45 kms and about a 30 minutes drive away from Pune on a Pune-Sholapur Highway. It is a huge hit amongst the routine commuters and the newbies who can’t resist being drawn to it, owing to the ambiance of fantastic food that it emits.
Enter Urali Kanchan and the aroma of rich Maharashtrian spices will engulf you in appetite.
It serves a variety of cuisines being a Highway refectory. You can get food from the routine famed Chinese to the folk cult food gods. But it’s pro is in it’s Maharashtrian flavors. Right from the heavenly Misal Pao to Sabudana Vada it caters to all your quick bite cravings.
Misal Pao is the best adornment on your platter and food for your soul from the Urali’s Kitchen.
It is basically a pair of buns served with a curious and spicy mix of various namkeens dipped in a hot curry, sprinkled liberally with grated onion, coriander and a lemon squeeze. Maharashtrian’s swear by it and others can’t stop licking their fingers once on it. You can’t stop coming back to Urali once you have tasted the Misal here.
Finish your meal in style and order a coffee. And man, you have a hot coffee arrive in an earthen clay cup and you can’t help indulge in the aesthetics of it. Of course it tastes just the coffee you wish it to be, but the experience of coffee, not tea, in a Khullhar as the clay cup is called, is out of the world experience.
So, what are you waiting for ?
Go Urali !!
Photos, text and copyright: Suman Rawat- 2014.
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