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Korma, Kheer and Kismet: Five Seasons In Old Delhi is a record of the food experiences offered in the streets of Old Delhi. Pamela Timms came down all the way from Scotland to enjoy the tastes and flavors of Indian food, which she found it in the street food stalls.


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Pamela Timms decided to get away from the dampness of Scotland and enjoy the sun and heat in India. She came to Delhi and her mission was not just to enjoy the tropical climate but also to discover the heady flavours of Indian foods.

Initially, Pamela Timms found it difficult to sample the genuine taste of Indian food. She then decided that Old Delhi was probably the best place to find it. She began exploring the side streets and by lanes of Old Delhi and discovered the wonderful street food stalls, offering a mind boggling variety of foods.

She soon discovered the taste of korma, kheer and jalebis and began exploring even deeper into the heart of the old city. She made friends and was invited into the homes of the people who prepared the delicious foods sold in the food stalls.

Celebrating festivals with them and enjoying the delicious sweets and spicy foods, she soon began collecting recipes for many of the wonderful dishes sold in the streets. She is now a part of the community whose food traditions she set out to discover.

Rupa Publications has published this hardcover edition of Korma, Kheer and Kismet: Five Seasons In Old Delhi. This is the first edition.

Key Features:

  • This book is a delightful record of the year the author spent discovering the culinary delights offered by Old Delhi.
  • It contains tempting description of the delightful fare offered and directions to the best eateries in which to enjoy them.
  • Each chapter in the book also contains detailed recipes for the delicious dishes that she discovered, enjoyed and then learnt to cook.

What readers are saying..

Lovely. I have gifted this book to umber pus friends who have all loved it and followed in its footsteps, every delicious step. Can’t wait to return to delhi and follow the trail.

I purchased this book with some misgivings, to be very frank. Here is yet another “firang” giving her two bits worth about Indian food, I thought dismissively. So, i first downloaded a sample, and on Christmas Day, while my wife was busy preparing a lunch of Mutton Rogan Josh for me, I started on the sample. Beforte lunch was served, I had purchased the book, and was well into the intricacies of Ashok and Ashok’s Muton Korma recipe ! Pamela writes with a sure touch about the a subject she obviously loves to a fault – good food. Her writing is witty and sincere, and she brings a Westerner’s eye for detail into her recipes. And her descriptions of the bylanes of Old Delhi are charming and so evocative, that you can actually feel you are there with her as she dashes off on a cold winter dawn in search of the elusive Daulat ki Chaat, or understanding the mysteries behind Bade Mian’s creamy Kheer, or the simple delights of a coal roasted shakharkandi. Her accounts of life around the dusty alleys of Jama Masjid, or the cubby holes in and around Chandni Chowk, reveal a gourmand’s true love for food belonging to a bye gone era. The book is a must read for lovers of Delhi street food at its best.

We are running this giveaway for your readers and followers, which is based on Lucky Draw. You just need to share your name and email address below to get yourself an entry into the draw. Once you do that you will also get a link – which you can share with your friends to enter the contest, and the best part – if any of your friend also signs up for this, you get 3 addition chances to win – so increasing your chances to win manifold.

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Tunday Kababi – From Lucknow to Delhi, with love…

I have always believed food at Old Delhi tastes much better when I’m either high or stoned, and last night it was double whammy. Last Friday me, Saurabh (who lost his phone) & Toshik (who gained some pounds and happiness) started on a journey which was nothing short of a Hangover + Kumar and Harold go to White Castle scenario, and finally we reached our Mecca – Tunday Kababi, Daryaganj.

Tunday Kababi, from outside

The sight (not the interiors) as you enter will surely make you salivate and tempt you beyond no return and all 3 of us (carnivore souls) are no immortals to not to give into the succumbing aromas of changezi chicken on XL Tawa, tunday kebabs on XXL Tawa and qormas in gigantic handis.

Chicken Changezi on a Giant Tawa

It was a packed Friday (Jumma) night and 10.30pm didn’t seem late for all the hordes around us waiting and sweating (no AC) patiently for their food. No server turned up on our table for 5mins (which seemed like 50) and we sweet talked one of them to please us to get pleased (reads corny ;))

The real deal – Legends in the making

Our order seemed big (we aren’t the Man Vs Food type eaters) to start with, 4 plate (each plate has 4 pieces) mutton kababs + 4 mughlai paranthas(size of a roomali roti), but we forgot we were on a different high today.

I must admit the sweet talk worked as our server got the order within minutes of our ordering, which earned us a lot of jealous stares. They were polished within secondss (no kidding) I don’t want to say the kababs are melt in your mouth (its clichéd) infact its melt in your finger category. If there is a rating to be awarded both scored a 5 on 5 stars all the way (seriously no words will ever justice their taste – its a eat it to believe it tale). The mughlai paranthas are very similar to their south cousins the malabari porotas – crispy and layeri.

We ordered another round of same order along with Chicken Biryani, Butter Chicken and Chicken Curry. Since it was late, about closing time (11.30p.m. they are mostly sold off on weekends) butter chicken and chicken curry were sold out, so we settled with biryani and chicken qorma. You get 3 portion sizes – quarter, half and full which in terms of portion sizes, can easily be translated to quarter – 1-2 persons, half – 2-3 persons and full – 4+. The qorma didn’t score too high but the pieces had the perfect texture, same as my previous visit and this is quiet commendable as even some of the high brow restaurants in Delhi fail to maintain a consistency.

The biryani ‘its different’ its not your usual ‘old Delhi style’ biryani. The rice was juicy and full of flavour, the pieces were spiced well. So yes, this one also is a must try.

Before we could realise we had cleaned 8 plates of kababs (32 pieces) + 10 paranthas + half biryani + half qorma, it reads BIG but surprisingly none of us felt heavy after this meal. The prices are modest, Tunday Kebabs at Rs.20 per piece, Mughlai Parantha at Rs.10 per piece, Biryani and Qorma, both were half plate for Rs.100 and full for Rs. 200.

All of us are going back to Tunday Kababi preferably on a week day and early on time to sample the full menu.

The place is not your usual restaurant set-up, the interiors aren’t high from any standards and its in an area where some Delhites think twice before venturing – but it matters where it should – FOOD.

All carnivores – needles to say its a must visit and sample. Sadly for the veggies, except the phirni everything is non-vegetarian at this joint.

Our trip (read: food trip) wasn’t over yet, we sampled some delightful stuff – Gundi (yes thats the name) Paan from the paan joint next to Odeon (now Big Odeon) Cinema at Connaught Place. These paans cost Rs. 20, are four small leaf rolls (joint like) filled with gulkand and regular paan spices and laced with chandan paste and have a super ‘cool’ after taste.

Gundi Paan

Disclaimer: With this post I’m not encouraging drinking or smoking 🙂 – the sole intention is to drive you to divinity – Tunday Kababi, 3778, Autar Bhavan, Main Road, Near Jama Masjid, Daryaganj, Delhi. Ph.: 9871595054

Drunk and non-tempting photography courtesy _TA and associates 

PS : You might read their name written as Tundey Kebab or Tund Kebabs elsewhere as well.