The focus may well be on fasting but the month of Ramzan also offers both gourmand and faithful alike a perfect excuse to dig into those scrumptious kebabs deliciously smoked on charcoal flames. And the predictable city haunts Old Delhi and Jamia Nagar have already geared up for the festivities.
Moonis Kada,a popular evening haunt in Batla House,is set for the month ahead. We will be open for sehri between 3 am and 5 am. Almost all the dishes from our menu will be on offer along with a variety of sweetbreads, Moonis Alim says.
According to Alim the evening footfall of diners goes up by almost 30 per cent in the month of Ramzan. Hot picks on the menu here are mutton nehari and chicken achari and Alim also plans to add milk-seviyan (vermicelli) to the menu.
At Zakir Nagar,Musheer Alam Khan of Unique Bakers and Confectioners plans to extend the timings of his shop to make shopping easy for his customers. The timings have been extended by two hours and the bakery will be open till 1 am. Special for the month are fish-shaped bread (for Rs 20) and coconut fruit buns (for Rs 20 a pair).
With the extended timings customers will have ample time to pick up breads for sehri after their evening prayers, Alam adds.
On the other side of the city,the teeming lanes of Chandni Chowk offer the bustling ambience with ferry lights and the aromas of greasy chicken curry being ladled in a roadside wok at a nearby stall.
Within a few score metres of Hauz Qazi chowk,Bade Mians kheer shop hopes to rope in extra customers during the coming few weeks. But you have to be lucky to secure yourself a pot of his saffron and sugary concoction. By 7.30 pm,hes barely left with a few plates during Ramzaan,he says. It is almost customary for any Old Delhi trotter worth his salt,to stop by this shop for spoonfuls of delicious rice and milk dessert.
Ustad Moinuddins stall at the mouth of Gali Qasim Jaan,Lal Kuan,has the distinguished delicacy of freshly smoked meat cubes. Perched on one corner of the shop,Moinuddin greets his customers who are waiting for their turn. The man clearly cannot spare a second to talk,but one of his assistants adds,It is business as usual but people turn up for early dinner during Ramzan depending on the time of iftar.
Mota Biryaniwala near Haveli Azam Khan is another popular spot for scrumptious plates of biryani.
Meanwhile,upscale diners in the city are yet to finalise their evening slots. We are hoping to get guests for iftar and our kitchen is all geared up for the festivity, says Zorawar Kalra of Punjab Grill,which has outlets in Ambience Mall,Gurgaon and Select Citywalk,Saket. For restaurants inside malls,it is important to maintain an evening menu with teas and light nibbles for shoppers looking for a quick bite, he elaborates. Ignis,located at the Inner Circle of Connaught Place,too,hopes to rope in some evening crowd. It opens its shutters in the evenings between 3.30 pm and 7 pm and has a tea-time basket on offer.