By Youthika Chauhan
Finally, after a long spell of scorching heat, the Rain Gods seem to be in the mood to smile upon the Indian sub-continent! As we welcome the initial few showers of the monsoon season, we cannot help but smile and rejoice in anticipation of soothing breeze and petrichor.
Interestingly, this month is named after the Roman Goddess ‘Juno’, the legendary deity of fertility. No wonder this time of the year reminds us how green and fecund the Earth can be. The month of June means several things to us – relief from hot summers, a splash of verdure in our surroundings, the start of a new academic year for school- and college-students; and of course, romance for all those in love! Needless to say, there is a special place that monsoon time has for all food lovers too, for who can resist the craving for Garma Garam Pakodas with Masala Chai! Nothing can beat the joy of watching raindrops splattering on window glasses and children jumping in puddles with a cuppa in one hand and samosas in the other! With the start of this season, I thought of sharing with you some culinary must-haves for the days to come:
Chaat – Some of us do fear falling prey to illnesses when devouring chaat at the nearest ‘khau gali. But I would not be exaggerating if I say this is a universal craving! Pani Puri, Sev Puri, Bhel – whatever be your palate’s favourite – this is the time to indulge in them all!
Chai – Imagine a long journey home with a slightly discomforting travel in the monsoon. What could be more welcoming and rejuvenating than a cup filled with goodness of antioxidants?
Bhajiya / Pakoda/ Samosa – You may be on a diet and complain about oily food all round the year, yet, can you, with a clear conscience deny to find your mouth water at the thought of these? I bet you can’t! Occasional indulgence is good because it adds flavour to lives – quite literally in this context!
Bhutta / Makai –Nothing enlivens long walks on beaches, sea-sides, or even those in simple alleyways like a hawker roasting fresh, ripe corn on a chulha. Monsoon reminds us that nature in its freshest form is always beautiful, and bhutta is a testimony to its gastric appeal!
Sabudana wada with Pudina Chatni – The crisp flavourful delight of this dish is enhanced with ketchup or chatni as accompaniments. We may have these at other times of the year, but this is truly irresistible during monsoon rains.
I am indeed looking forward to Holachef’s upcoming menu, to excite my taste-buds with these and other dishes! Bon Appétit to you too!
About Youthika Chauhan
Apart from being a passionate food connoisseur, Youthika is a qualified food technologist and a nutrition expert. She writes as a hobby and has been a regular on Quora for food and related topics. Her writing experience extends to being the editor of a newsletter, UDAAN, which reaches to about 4000 alumni from her institute each year. Youthika is a regular customer of Holachef.