Where to eat Amritsari Kulcha in Amritsar? – Food Trippin’

The Eatlo gang  lead by Aman and Jaideep Paaji that raided all the Kulcha joints in this post.
As
legendary as Amritsari Kulcha is, it is something that we Dilliwalas
hardly understand. Not many of us know the real taste, texture or even
the idea of one. People confuse it with Stuffed Naan or Parantha all the
time, when the fact is that those two type of breads are completely
different from genuine Amritsari Kulcha.

 

Amritsari
Kulcha’s dough is made in a special way, with layers and then stuffed
with Aloo, Gobhi, Paneer etc. It is flaky, crispy and is served with
Chhole and Khatti chutney waale pyaz. Traditionally no raita or dal is
served with them, which is a common practice in Delhi these days.

 

And
generally speaking most of us have had so many bad versions for those
Kulchas that when we actually land in Amritsar, we eagerly lap up
whatever comes our way and consider it the best the city has to offer.
However with my recent interactions with Jaideep Riar and Aman Kahlon
from Amritsar, I realised that most of the places that get recommended
on Eatlo were the places frequented by tourists (read non-residents or
visitors to the city) and not many Ambarsaris actually go there to get
their fill of kulchas.

 

So
on this trip, we surrendered ourselves to Aman and Jaideep paaji, and
requested them to take charge of our Kulcha expedition and education.
And being the gracious punjabis they are, they helped us in sampling 4
of the top Kulcha makers that Amritsar has to offer.

 

1.
All India Famous – The one we tasted last year and the place from where
we started our expedition this year. This place was Nirvana for me,
this place served the best Amritsari Kulcha I had ever tasted. Amazing
by Delhi and rest of Indian standards for sure, but now I have tasted
better. Much better.

 

Location – Chungi crossing, Maqbool Road
Amritsari Kulche at All India Famous Kulche Wala – Maqbool Road

 

Mix of Chutney and onions – Some also call it ‘Khatta’

 

2.
Harbans Lal Kulche Waala – This is located in a small local market,
which looked kind of deserted to me or maybe we were there quite early
in the day. But then ‘Bansa’ as Harbans is popularly known amongst
locals had no shortage of patrons. And one bite into his kulcha, we knew
why. His Kulcha was considerably thinner, crispier and tastier than the
one we had at All India Famous.

 

Location – Old Market of Anand Avenue
Harbans Lal Kulche Wale – they do have a separate sitting area.
All I see is the swagger of a Amritsari Kulcha
Amtrisari Kulcha at Harbans Lal Kulche Wala

 

Amtrisari Kulcha at Harbans Lal Kulche Wala
3.
Ashoka kulche Waala – Now here Aman Paaji only made us sample a Kulcha
which was off the Menu and is called Paintee waala Kulcha (Rs.35
Kulcha). The Kulcha was stuffed with Gobhi, Aloo, Paneer, Tamatar etc
and though it was delicious, did not feel or taste like a Kulcha. It
reminded me of Chur Chur Naan that we get in Delhi. Aman told us that
today he (Ashokha) got over excited and over-stuff the kulcha. Probably
would try it again when I am there. The Chhole that he serves were much
better than any other outlet that I have tasted.

 

Location : A-Block, Ranjit Avenue (near Park)
Paintee waala special off the menu Kulcha

Regular Amritsari Kulche at Ashoka, notice the difference in shape compared to others.
Amritsari Kulche ready to be served

Most delicious chhole of all the ones we tasted that day.

 

4.
Monu Kulcha Corner – Now this seemed to be a long drive for us, atleast
by the Amritsari standards but then I cannot be a good judge of
distance as I had no clue where I was, or where I was being taken. We
were there on a Saturday and while driving Jaideep Paaji told me that
last Sunday he went to Monu for Kulchas and he was 57th in queue to be
served. Yup, Monu had 56 other orders to cater too, before he could have
served Jaideep Paaji. And once we had our Kulchas infront of us, we
knew why someone who was so off the grid, someone literally out of the
city limits was doing so well for himself. His Kulcha was the crispiest
and tastiest amongst all we had tasted that day. Though the chhole at
Ashoka were a tad better, but then the Kulcha itself made up for
everything.

 

Aman
paaji tells me that Monu used be operate from a place called Chitta
Katra in the walled city and was quite famous there. However now he has
got his own shop and the new location also gives him a better paying
clientele.

 

Location : Take a turn on Loharka Road from NH3, go for 1.5 km approximately and Monu would on your Left hand side.
Amritsari Kulcha at Monu Kulche wala – The Best of the lot.

Amritsari Kulcha at Monu Kulche wala – The Best of the lot.
Amritsari kuchas of a different type

Getting ready to roll

 

Rate list in Punjabi
at Monu Kulche waala

 

Now
I am sure that we have managed to touch only tip of the iceberg when it
comes to Kulchas in Amritsar. However considering that tip was actually
the top shown to us by Dr. Aman Kahlon and Jaideep Riar, both of whom
are local to Amritsar and super foodies in their own right and the fact
that these joints are not on tourist trail and they cater to actual
Ambarsaris, I feel pretty safe in saying that the above mentioned
Kulcha joints are best that Amritsar has to offer.PS : Working on pictures I realized that the rate list at Monu Kulche Wala is written in Gurmukhi (Punjabi) and no English or Hindi translation is there. Do we need more proof that there is nothing about this shop that is geared to cater to tourists or non locals ?? 😛Connect with me on Twitter : @SH_AGer

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Chhole Kulche at Janpat – By Tanvi Gupta

If you are a Janpath regular, and want to have a proper meal without burning a hole in your pocket, its better to skip the chaat, and cross the road to enter the lane opposite shop no. 38. Keep going straight, some about 50-60 footsteps until you see a shed on the left, over-flooded with people. There is where, you get three dishes only, Chhole-chawal, Chhole-kulcha and Chhole-bhatura, but each one to die for. 

As a student one always has a tight pocket and wants to weigh each penny spent properly whether it be on food, their crushes or shopping. Janpath being a direct bus from college (Hauz Khas), was easiest to reach, best to hang out as it had everything from flea shopping, books, street food and of-course, haggling.

A bunch of us would make weekly visits there, unless we got tired of the food there. One day, while taking pictures of the area around we ended up noticing this big overcrowded shed. Our curiosity led us to find out what was the crowd puller there. We were right, it was a bunch of young office goers who came to attend a call to their hunger. Good, cheap street food was what it was.A very organized way of paying, getting the token and further receiving your food was what led us to try it too.The very first bite left us wanting for more.

This food stall has been there for more than 20-25 years now. Hats off, they have managed to retain the quality and the taste.

On the menu:

Chhole-chawal, Chhole-kulcha and Chhole-bhatura. Each ranging between Rs.30-45. The quantity, quality and the taste is enough to give your taste buds a feeling of satisfaction and a high, that lasts till you have your next meal. To balance the spices out, a ‘thela-waala’ stands there, to provide you with chhota Coke bottles and water.

Must try, if you happen to go there and you are lucky if your office is located there anyways.
Very popularly, known as the BHOGAL CHHOLE KULCHE WAALA. Available from 1pm-3:30pm

Written by Tanvi Gupta

Edited by Shashank Aggarwal
 To share your experiences, reviews, recipes, food pictures etc, mail them to shashank@foodenthusiastsofdelhi.com 

Kulcha King’s Amritsari Kulcha – not for my platter

Amritsari Kulcha. A puzzle that can only be solved with my visit to Amritsar and eating atleast at 2-3 better known places. People who are in know of food, complain that Delhi does not have any place which comes even close to the stuff they serve in Amritsar.

However that does not stop the Food Enthusiasts from exploring whatever is available and one name that popped up few months back was Kulcha King, at Ring Road Market in Sarojini Nagar. I went there on an EOiD outing few months back, and at that time the decision seems unanimous, that regardless of the crowds he gets, we were not much fond of Kulcha King’s Kulchas.

 On one of the rainy days past week, I was riding by the area, and hunger pangs literally forced me to to pay another visit to this outlet. Though I remember not loving the place first time around, however I do not recall me hating it as well. So thought another shot would is well deserved.

Masala Kulcha

Its looks like lot of spice, but it does not do much to taste.
Chhole and Chutney waale Pyaz
Boondi Raita at Rs. 10 per serving

I had a Masala Kulcha to start with, normal Aloo Kulcha, with a mix of spices sprinkled on in, and then a Paneer Kulcha. On being asked, the owner didn’t seem to have an answer, but just kept repeating it was Garam Masala. It was served with chhole and finely chopped onions in imli chutney. However like the first time round, I found the chhole to be too bland for my taste. Kulchas were well made, however lack of flavor in Chhole did disappoint me a bit.

Paneer Kulcha

Paneer Kulcha was actually very well done.
The simple menu

As mentioned earlier, I am not sure how they serve it in Amritsar, but I surely hope this is not the way it is done, if it is, then I don’t think I would ever appreciate it.

Visit to Lotan Kulchewala – a photolog

Me and Rohan Kaikini visited walled city this Sunday morning. Wanted to make a detailed post on it, however for now posting some pictures from the visit. The prime ‘target’ was Lotan Kulchewaala, and we were not disappointed at all. He has an unique style of making chhole which I have not seen anywhere else till now. Just a tip, if you like your food to hot (Chilly Hot), then ask him to keep in normal or else ask him to keep the spices low 😉

The version with normal Masala, extra Khatai and oodles of butter.
Crowd at Lotan Kulchewala at 8:30 AM.
This is supposed to be a very slow day for his business.
Deepak preparing the Chhole, adding ‘Masala’ and Khatai
And Deepak decides to play showman, doing tricks with ubiquitous potato.
Here you go..

The more mundane version, normal masala and khatai.
well, all I can say is slurrrrpppp.. !

Now after couple of plates of mouthwatering stuff, we wanted to have more, however going to area and not paying out respects at Shyam sweets would have been sacrilege, so we decided to bid adieu to Lotan and headed towards Shyam Sweets

Patrons enjoying goodies at Shyam sweets
Bedmi with Aloo Subzi, there are not many places that serve these.
And it does not get more ‘exotic’ than this, Halwa Nagouri, in a league of its own.

Directions : Shyam Sweets is right at Barshah bullah Chowk (Intersection of Chawri Bazaar and Shyam Sweets).

For Lotan – Go to Barsha Bullah Chowk and ask for Lotan, almost everyone would know about him. More precisely, he is in Chhatta Shah ji.

Timings : 7:30 AM to 10 AM

After that you can find him between 11 AM to 1 pm behind commercial school on Darya Ganj.

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