Undisputedly the most relished snack across the country, the delectable golgappa known as patashe or batashe in Kanpur is everyone’s quintessential favourite. This versatile dish goes by different names in the country – puchka, gup chup golgappa, pani puri, phulki and tikki to name a few.
The best batashe in Kanpur can be sampled at Murli Batashe Wala and Shankar Batashe Wala on Birhana Road. This hugely popular chaat is eaten as pani puri (the pani has an amazing tangy flavour from the dried mango and homemade masalas), as dahi puri (pure thick curd is used and both the meethi chutney and hari chutney are made using local ingredients and homemade masala) and sev puri.
Puris are deep-fried Indian bread prepared from all-purpose flour. First, maida or all-purpose flour, oil and salt are mixed well with a little water. The dough is kneaded till it becomes soft. It is greased with oil and allowed to rest.
Small lemon-sized balls of dough are made and rolled out. They are cut into circles using a cutter. These are fried one by one in a large kadai till they turn slightly golden in colour. The excess oil is drained out.
The puris are broken into and filled with a little portion of boiled potatoes and white peas or chana. These are then dunked into a large drum or vessel of pani and served one by one to the drooling customer!
The dahi puri is a snack with the filled puris neatly arranged on a plate and topped off with dahi, meethi chutney, hari chutney, boondi or sev and finely chopped coriander and maybe some pomegranate.
The mouth-watering batashe of Kanpur is simply irresistible and in a class of its own. It is highly unlikely that you will get such a wide range of batashe anywhere in the country and hence, must not be missed.
Written by Lakshmi Subramanian