India’s street food scene is absolutely incredible and we are big big fans of trying it all…everything! So many people told us not to go near the street food in India in fear of getting sick but we ignored all of that, indulged on every corner and are so glad we did! The street food we’ve eaten is some of the best food we’ve had in India and, on another plus, is always ridiculously cheap! Each dish or snack is always an explosion of flavour and we couldn’t recommend trying it all enough! Udaipur has a fantastic street food scene and during our time volunteering at Zostel we concocted this little street food tour as one of our nightly activities! It explores a variety of traditional Indian snacks and went down an absolute treat! We hope you enjoy it too….
JMB – Pyaaz Kachouri – 20 Rs each
Kachouris are traditional street food snacks from Rajasthan! Much like a samosa they are stuffed with a variety of ingredients and then deep fried but are disc shaped as opposed to triangular like the well known samosa!
The pyaaz kachouri is originally from Jaipur and is stuffed with potato and onions. We’ve tried them all over Rajasthan and these huge ones from JMB in Udaipur are by far the best! They taste a little bit like pizza to us and are so so moorish!
Egg World – Egg Burji – 60 Rs a plate, 70 Rs with bread
Just round the corner from JMB you can find Egg World! Sounds a bit weird but there are a number of street carts all dedicated to cooking up the humble egg in new, exciting and spicy ways…this is India after all!
The first cart you come to, however, is the most famous with the owner having made it on to Indian master chef! You will know which stand it is as his claim to fame is plastered all over the boards outside! Try his famous egg burji and be delighted with the fiery taste!
His recipe is secret but there’s a lot of boiled eggs, onion and Masala! You can get it with or without bread – we always opted for without just to save room for the rest of the tour!
Name in Hindi so we’re not sure! – Bhel Pouri – 60 Rs a bowl
These bowls come absolutely heaped so we recommend sharing one! Bhel Pouri is a popular Indian chaat (meaning snack) and is made from puffed rice, onions, tomatoes, sev (small pieces of crunchy noodles) and in this place a lot of fresh coriander!
Now we know coriander can be a deal breaker for a lot of people so if it’s not your thing then maybe give this one a skip…coriander lovers dig in! Bhel Pouri has a slightly strange taste at first but keep going and the big mix of flavours will delight your taste buds!
Another nameless place (sorry guys, they are local after all!) – Pani Puri – 10 Rs a pop
This ones a real marmite type of thing; you either love it or hate it! But we didn’t tell you that – you HAVE to give it a go! You will see street carts of Pani Puri all over India as it’s a real favourite amongst locals so a must try for anyone visiting! Pani Puri are round puffed balls with small holes in the top which are then filled with either a sweet or savoury flavour depending on your preference! The savoury flavour is essentially onion, chickpea and coriander chutney stuffed inside with a spicy mint flavoured water poured on top! Sounds very weird and well – it is! Pop it in your mouth whole and bite down; the sensation is like nothing you’ve experienced as is the absolute burst of flavours! If something could ever be described as a taste sensation then this is it! The sweet flavour is made from tamarind and dates and is equally as tangy! Give both a try and see what you think!!
Any stall you see – Gulab Jamon – 40-50 Rs for five
These sweet treats are absolutely excellent and perfect for anyone with a sweet tooth! You can see them being cooked up outside many of the shops in the Hati Pol area of Udaipur so jut pick one that looks good on your way back home! They taste a little bit like sticky toffee pudding all in one mouthful! They are small sponges balls soaked and served in a sugary syrup! Just yum! We also tried them warm with vanilla ice cream – if you see this anywhere then don’t pass it by it was absolutely delicious!!
Any corner shop – Paan – 10/20 Rs
If you’ve been in India for any length of time you will have seen the locals chewing on something and inevitably spitting out a big stream of red liquid! Looks pretty gross but this is the traditional paan – made from betel leaf and stuffed with areca nut and often tobacco. There are now, however, modern versions of paan which are still betel leaf but stuffed with an array of flavours from mint, peppermint and cherry to gummy sweets and even dipped in chocolate! Trying paan is like a rite of passage in India and they are a great palette cleanser after so many street snacks! One big mouth flavour explosion!!!
It’s unlikely you will still be feeling hungry after all of these culinary delights but there’s one last place you just have to try in Udaipur! But it can be left for breakfast the next day….
Under the blue arch in Jagdish Chowk – Poha Rs 25, Samosas & Kachouri with curd Rs 25
We have written a full review of this place because we loved it that much but here’s a quick recap!
Poha is a traditional breakfast dish for Indians and is made from flattened or beaten rice, onion, turmeric for the lovely yellow colour, chilli, curry leaves and lots of coriander! It’s absolutely delicious!
Samosas and kachouris are of course the classic Indian street food snack but in here they go the extra mile!! The samosa or kachouri is cut open and squashed a little then loaded up with curd, a sweet tangy sauce and then sprinkled with nuts! It’s truly addictive!
So there you have it! Try each of these dishes and be taken on a journey of new flavours and sensations! We can’t promise you’ll love them all but you can definitely find a favourite amongst the list and you’ll certainly be left wanting to sample more of India’s amazing culinary street food delights!!
*We of course urge you all to be careful about which street food places you choose to eat from in India and not everyone’s stomachs will be as strong as ours after having spent a year in Asia but the above places have all been tried and tested and are safe to eat from. Our rule of thumb when choosing a street food place is that if its busy with locals then you know its good and you wont be feeling sick for the next few days! As we said some of the best food in India has been the street food so don’t be frightened and dig right in!*
C & J x