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Lets Chaat About It

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For the second field trip of this class, we drove down and ate at the Taj Chaat House. I will say that coming from someone with a rather timid palette I was a little skeptical of the food we were going to eat. After about a thirty minute drive north we arrived the Taj Chaat grocery store/restaurant. We must of looked out of place because as we were walking in a little girl had the most surprised expression on her face as I passed her. Passing through the aisles of the grocery store as I first entered I was impressed with the cultural decorations of Indian culture found in the store, as well as the fact that this grocery store contains more rice than I have ever seen in one place before. There were big bags of rice that seemed to go on endlessly found in various places throughout the market. It was interesting to see the differences between this Taj Chaat grocery store compared to a local grocery store that I usually shop at. After walking around the store for a little bit, we entered the restaurant to see what we were going to order. I was surprised to find the immense amount of options that were available, it seemed that within every major food option there were at least ten different ways to prepare those items. As I mentioned earlier, my palette is not the most adventurous, so I stuck to remotely simple Indian cuisines of cheese naan and cheese dosa. I was thoroughly impressed with both of my meals, the dosa was way bigger than I expected and I thought the texture of the bread they used was delicious. The cheese naan however was one of the best things I have ever eaten, using the specific type of oven makes the bread taste absolutely incredible. I liked the cheese naan so much that I went and ordered another one before we left so that I could eat more of it in the car. When me and my friends in class were leaving the restaurant there wasn’t a single bad review on where we had just ate, everyone in the car was surprised at how good the food was.

When comparing my experience back to the article written by Arijit Sen, the author spoke about the importance of the having a collection of members of the same cuistic background to be able to have restaurants of food from smaller cultures. Growing up near the area of the Taj Chaat house I was able to put both together because that area in plano has a large presence of Indian culture that can be seen in the grocery store. For example, in the Hindu religion, they are all vegetarians, because of this finding any type of meat in the store is impossible. I think that it’s so interesting that food that has passed down for generation through generation, and originated on the complete other side of the world in India, has found its way in to the american cuisine all over the country. In closing, I was immensely impressed with the restarant and differences in culture found at the Taj Chaat.

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