First time at the Chaat


When I first walked into Taj Grocers, I was amazed to see how dedicated the market was to Indian cuisine. Every aisle of the store was littered with different varieties of Indian food. When you first enter the store, there is a thirty feet long row of bags of rice. This is to be expected since rice is such a staple in the Indian diet, but it was still amazing to see how much rice the store had to have on hand to be able to meet the demand of the local Indian population. The rest of the store was filled with other food items and spices that are common to India that we have read about in our books. When we finally got to the restaurant in the back of the market, I was amazed at how packed with people it was. I thought there would be a handful of people at most but there turned out to be around ten to fifteen families eating.
The Taj Chat House is part of a growing trend. According to the article, From Curry Mahals to Chaat cafes, “Chaat is part of an emerging menu of global cuisine that has appeared in American cities… Most Chaat cafes are places that accommodate everyday practices of immigrants while also catering to the needs and activities of nonimmigrant customers and other stakeholders in a multicultural city.” The article went on to say that the food at these Chaat cafes are authentic but definitely have been altered in some way to be more fitting to American people. Regardless of whether it was 100% authentic or not, I was excited to try Indian food for the first time. The menu was ginormous, and I had no idea where to start. After several minutes of combing through the menu, I decided to get Aloo Gobi. The only ingredient that I knew would be in the dish would be a potato, since in Hindi “Aloo” means potato. I went up to the counter and ordered my Aloo Gobi, and decided to try the medium level of spiciness and I’m glad that I did because I definitely could not have handled the spiciest version. After I paid for my food, I took my pager and went and found a seat. I waited for about ten to fifteen minutes and then my pager went off. When I finally got the food, I was extremely excited with my decision. Along with my Aloo Gobi, I got a plate of rice and some white sauce that I do not know the name of. After much investigation, I decided that besides potatoes, the Aloo Gobi consisted of cauliflower and a variety of spices. The way I decided to eat my dish was to take some of the Aloo Gobi and then combine it with some of the rice. It definitely exceeded my expectations. The blend of spices with the potatoes and cauliflower along with the rice was an extremely good combination. Although I must admit that I do not like the white sauce that came with the rice, whatever it was. All in all though, I was extremely pleased with my experience at the Taj Chaat house.

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