Delhi: Streetside Snacking

Most visitors will hear about, and indeed even sample, the savory kebabs and Moghul delights at the restaurant Karim’s (16 Gali Kebabian; karimhoteldelhi.com) in Old Delhi’s Chandni Chowk marketplace. But according to Rahul Verma, who writes about food for the Indian daily paper The Hindu, this area, where eating can be a contact sport, also offers some of the city’s top street food. He fed us info on his favorite Delhi snacks and the vendors that make them best—both in Chandni Chowk and at easier-to-navigate spots in New and South Delhi.

Chat at Natraj Cafe

Natraj is renowned for its dahi bhalle, a sweet-and-sour chat (taste) made with fried lentil-flour dumplings soaked in water and covered with spiced yogurt. 1396 Chandni Chowk, near Central Bank. (New Delhi alternative: Prabhu, Shahjahan Rd.)

Parathas at PT Gaya Prasad Shiv Charan

This place has been cooking paratha—flatbread baked in a tandoor or fried in a pan—for five generations. Try the one stuffed with karela (bitter gourd) and another with peppery pappadum (a cracker made with lentil or chickpea flour). 34 Gali Paranthe Wali. (New Delhi alternative: Not Just Paranthas, M-84, M Block market, Greater Kailash II)

Gola kebabs at Mian Sa’ab Kebabwala

From his perch on the pavement, Mian Sa’ab makes his incredibly tender and fiery kebabs using buffalo meat so finely ground, he has to tie it to the skewer with twine before roasting. Opposite Dujana House, between Chitli Qabar and Jama Masjid. (South Delhi alternative: Khan Chacha’s Kebab Corner, Khan market, 75 Middle Ln.)

Sohan Halwa Puri at Ghantewala Confectioners

Since 1790 Ghantewala has been famous for this wintertime sweet made by boiling almonds, pistachios, and sugar in milk and clarified butter. In hot months the chewy sweet called sohan tikki, made with cinnamon and molasses, is best. 862 Chandni Chowk; ghantewala.com. (New Delhi alternative: Kaleva, 109 Gole market)