Imagine this: It’s raining cats and dogs, and you sitting idly on your bean bag with a steaming cup of masala chai admiring the drizzling diamonds splash on your balcony as they partially drench you. But unfortunately, it’s a luxury we can’t afford these days, thanks to internet and laziness.
Pitter patter of rain, check. Hot tea, check. Pakodas, check. Cozy environment, check. When you have them all, there’s no better way to enjoy the monsoons. Nothing accompanies rain better than the aroma of masala chai and some fried stuff. Just in case you don’t feel like doing it all yourself there’s Mister Chai at Shangri-La’s – Eros Hotel, New Delhi. They have curated a new monsoon menu with a variety of delectable desi bites to celebrate rainy days.
‘Smell of rain, joy of chai’ as they call it has a series of snacks that will make you nostalgic. The delicacies at Mister Chai which are on offer till monsoon, are inspired by a desire to slake the pakoda and chai loving taste buds activated at the first pitter-patter of monsoon rains. The menu consists of an updated version of our very own bread pakoda: Keema and Spicy Potato Pakoda, Mumbai’s indigenous Ram Laddoo topped with grated radish and green chutney, Kulcha, Paneer pakoda, Akuri toast, Pakoda bhaji, Mirchi, and the all-time favourite bhutta, all coming with complimentary Cutting chai served in a traditional but cute ‘chai ki patri’.
Some of the outstanding factors about the snacks are the exquisite presentation and little twists to some traditionally accepted appearances. For example, their kulcha resembles a taco, only that it has a masala jackfruit filling, sure to make you drool, in a tandoori roti. Akuri toast is a simple Parsi dish which has hot and runny scrambled eggs on toast. When you sip a cuppa with them, the bite sized toasts topped with eggs and chilies would throw a party to your taste buds. If you are the sort of person who nibbles away at snacks all evening, then ram laddoo is just what you need with your favourite hot beverage. Just keep popping a laddoo in your mouth while you bask in the comfortable sofas. A perfect choice for a rainy snack from their menu is the Aloo Tuk – spicy fried potato garnished with garlic aioli. The melt-in-the-mouth fries topped with the aioli is a splendid combination for garlic lovers, I couldn’t help but track a parallelism to Italian cuisine.
In a loner’s world, rain, tea, literature, and dreams acquire the top shelf of priorities. So it would be apt to second the Russian novelist and philosopher Fyodor Dostoyevsky like he once said, “I say let the world go to hell, but I should always have my tea.” In case you are having difficulty with sniffles and need to feel snug in this wet and damp weather, but are too lazy to treat yourself with a rainy-day dish, run to Mister Chai for the same comfort and cooked-to-perfection dishes.