Ludhiana is located in the state of Punjab in northern India. The city is home to a variety of museums and other attractions including the Museum of Rural Life at the Punjab Agricultural University, which exhibits musical instruments, pottery, and traditional Punjabi clothing. The nearby Nehru Rose Garden is a pretty visit, with its over 1,000 rose varieties and ornamental fountains. Visitors can learn about Punjab’s military history at the Maharaja Ranjit Singh War Museum in the city. This industrial city is also famous for the production of cotton T-shirts and woolen sweaters, with most of the major Indian brands being located in Ludhiana. While exploring the city, you can build up quite an appetite and the following are the best street food you must try in Ludhiana, Punjab.
1. Samosa (baked or fried pastries filled with vegetables or meat)
Samosas are a popular snack all over India and in many other parts of the world. The snack consists of a baked or fried pastry in a triangular or half-moon shape and filled with spiced potatoes, onions, lentils, meat, and other ingredients. However, the Punjabi version tend to serve a larger variety of the popular samosa as street food and in the restaurants. They are filled with masala (spiced) potatoes, crushed green chilies, cheese, and often dried fruit, and these can be served with a side of chutney as pictured here.
2. Parantha (wheat flatbread)
The name of this flatbread is an amalgamation of the words “parat” and “atta” – literally translating to “cooked dough.” Paratha is popular throughout India in areas where wheat is a staple. In Punjab, the name is “parantha” or “parontay.” In Ludhiana and the surrounding areas, the flatbread is often served on its own as a snack spread with butter and stuffed with tasty spiced mashed potatoes, cauliflower or other vegetables, or as a side dish served with meat or vegetable curries.
3. Golgappe (deep-fried snack with a filling)
What is called golgappa in Punjab is known as Panipuri elsewhere in India. Golgappa is a popular street food snack consisting of a round, hollow puri (similar to a crepe) made from semolina or flour which is fried until crisp and is filled with tamarind chutney, potato, onion or chickpeas and other vegetables, as well as chaat masala. Other variations in Ludhiana and the Punjab region include filling the golgappa with cucumber juice.
4. Pakodas (deep-fried snack)
Pakoda (sometimes called pakora or bhaji in other regions of India) is a popular fried snack served in restaurants and as a popular street food. A variety of ingredients are used for the dish, including eggplant, onion, potato, cauliflower, paneer, plantain, tomato or chili pepper. Meat or fish pakoda is another variant of the dish. The ingredients are dipped in a batter prepared from gram flour and are then deep-fried until crispy and delicious.
5. Chaap tikka (spicy skewers)
Chaap tikka can be consumed as a starter to a meal or a popular street snack. The dish is normally made with pieces of soya, marinated in a variety of spices, butter, and cream. Spices include sliced onion, fresh coriander, finely chopped green chili or hot red chili powder. The chaap tikka is cooked on a skewer over direct flame.
6. Kulcha (flat-bread)
Kulcha is a type of flatbread served in India. It is similar to naan bread, except kulcha is made with maida or refined white flour, while naan is made from wheat flour. Kulcha is also prepared with butter and while it can be eaten on its own, it typically comes stuffed with meat or vegetables and is cooked in a pan over an open flame.
7. Gobi manchurian (spicy vegetable balls)
Gobi Manchurian is an Indian adaptation of a popular Chinese dish, updated with the spices and flavors preferred in India. The dish is made from balls of mixed vegetables (e.g. cabbage or cauliflower), deep-fried and then tossed in a hot sweet and sour Manchurian sauce. This is ideal as a snack on skewers, especially in the street, or as a side dish or main dish.
8. Baragara (burger)
Baragara is Punjab’s word for one of the most popular fast food snacks in the world – the famous burger! The burgers might seem to look the same as the Western variety, but here in Punjab they have a spicier touch and include shahi paneer, butter chicken and other piquant flavors. As the taste is so different from the Western-style burger, they can take some getting used to when eating them for the first time! The best advice is to not think of McDonald’s when tucking into the treat.
9. Tandoori chicken (spicy roasted chicken)
This popular chicken dish is made by first marinating chicken pieces (thighs, breasts, etc) in a natural yogurt with a variety of spices, including ginger, turmeric, cloves or garam masala. The pieces of chicken are then roasted in a “tandoor,” which is the name for an Indian cylindrical clay oven. While tandoori chicken originates in India, it has become a popular dish in many other parts of the world.
Experience the flavors of Punjabi street food in Ludhiana
While exploring the fascinating streets of this colorful Indian city, browsing in the shops and markets or visiting the museums or temples along the way, make sure to stop for a while to experiment with the spicy tastes, aromas and flavors of some of the best street food you must try in Ludhiana, Punjab, India.
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