Chole Bhature, history of Chole Bhature

The Ravishing History of Our Beloved Chole Bhature

Who doesn’t love Chole Bhature? Probably the only Indian dish that has followers even more than the Kardashians, our love for Chole Bhature is a match made in heaven. Walking down the cold winters of Delhi and resisting the sizzling aroma of spicy Chole is hard to ignore. It is a fact that Indians, no matter where they hail from, what their taste is, or even regardless of age and health, we have an eternal love story with this delicious snack! From South to North and East to West, Chole Bhature has its footprints throughout history.

The dish is divided into two sections, one is spicy and tangy Chole or the chickpeas while the other half is called Bhatura, a deep-fried Indian tortilla. Served with chopped onions and pickles, one can find chole bhature on every second street in the country. But have you ever imagined, how the dish made its way to India?

The history of Chole Bhature takes us back to the deadly Partition of 1947.

Indian freedom is hard-earned. Just when India finally came out from the clutches of the Raj, a line was drawn. Random, insane, and uncalculated, it is today known as the Line of Control dividing the country into two parts- India and Pakistan. It separated India into two separate independent nations. But this line was not based on goodwill, cooperation, or charity- the line was rather political, Beneficiary, and yes- Religious. It did not just divide the land, but instead the union of people where Hindus were forced to migrate to India while the Muslims left for Pakistan.

What followed was a bloody massacre with people killing their friends and family. Lives were lost, honor was looted, and families were shattered. But this mass exodus also exchanged rituals, culture, and cuisine of the other side. According to some people, among the crowd of refugees Peshori Lal Lamba migrated to India from Lahore and it was he who bought the dish for this new independent India. To earn his livelihood, he set up the Kwality restaurant in the Connaught Place area of Delhi and served sizzling chole along with other snacks.

But there is another story as well which says that Chole Bhature was brought to India by Sita Ram. He was also a victim of the partition who came to Delhi from West Punjab, present-day Pakistan. Sita Ram opened a small stall in the city and started selling chole Bhature along with his son Diwan Chand. The business still survives and is today run by his grandson Pran Nath Kohli.

Not sure which story is accurate, either way, people loved the dish. Chole Bhature gained quick recognition and today we cannot survive without it. Here are some of the most famous destinations in Delhi to take delight in the snack.

Sita Ram Diwan Chand:

Chole Bhature, history of Chole Bhature

And we couldn’t say why not! Being the first to introduce the dish to India, Sita Ram Diwan Chand, Paharganj, does an exceptionally delicious plate of chole bhature. Serving since eternal, they serve chole bhature along with special aloo sabzi, pickle, salad and of course Lassi. One can experience a variety of Bhature’s here ranging from paneer bhature to aloo stuffed platter!

Chache Di Hatti:

Chole Bhature, history of Chole Bhature

Situated in the busy lanes of Kamla Nagar, Chache Di Hatti is the one-stop destination when it comes to Chole bhature. Served with aloo stuffed bhature, onions slices, tangy mint chutney, and a bowl of spicy chole, it is a perfect place for anyone broke. These chole bhature’s are both- pocket and tummy friendly!

Bhimsains Bengali Sweet House:

Chole Bhature, history of Chole Bhature

Located in Mandi House, Bhimsains Bengali Sweet Home is running for almost a decade now. As the name suggests, the place serves a variety of dishes and sweets. But their chole bhature are to die for! Nicely tossed butter over the lip-smacking chole and aromatic paneer bhature served with the delight of mint chutney, it is one of the best places to satisfy your hunger when in Mandi House.

Odeon Sweets:

Chole Bhature, history of Chole Bhature

Gole market’s Odeon sweet is another one on the list. This place also serves mouth-watering chole bhature. Served with the usual mint chutney, onion rings, green chili, and lassi, Odean sweets are famous all over Delhi for the same.  One pro tip: try visiting the place during non-rush hours, otherwise, you’ll find it jam-packed with customers!

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