My favorite Indian street food is Chaat
I doubt there's any Indian who does not love Chaat.
Even in distant U.S.A, Chaat has become so popular that these days it's available nearly everywhere.
Chaat is available at Indian grocery stores in the form of Haldiram or Swad packets with either dry spice powder or chutneys, in sweets stores, fast food restaurants and even in food courts these days.
The other day while driving on Oak Tree Road in Iselin (NJ), I developed a sudden urge to eat some spicy, tangy and yummy Chaat.
I made a quick turn into Kumar Soni Plaza to check out the Chaat items in Flavor Junction Food Court
on the 2nd Floor.
Of the six restaurants in Flavor Junction, Chaat is available only at Chatkaz
Besides a variety of Chaat, Chatkaz also offers Gujarati Thali, Pav Bhaji etc.
I placed an order each of Samosa Chaat ($5.99) and Papdi Chaat ($5.99). My total bill including tax came to $12.82.
Since it is a food court, you place your order, pay for it and wait for your order to be ready.
It took 15 minutes for Chatkaz kitchen to get my Chaats ready.
No Water with my $12 Food
When I got my Chaats, I did not get water with my Chaats despite paying $12.82 for the food.
My order of Chaats came with two plastic spoons, one fork and two napkins.
Though my order included Samosa Chaat, I did not get a knife.
I looked around for a water jug in a common area where the plastic forks, knives etc and other stuff are usually kept in a food court.
But I did not find any water jug in the Flavor Junction food court.
Sweetish Papdi Chaat
OK Samosa Chaat
Sweetish Papdi Chaat
There were multiple problems with my Papdi Chaat order.
- First, the serving size was too small for $5.99.
- Second, there was too much yogurt on the Papdi Chaat.
- Third, Papdi Chaat was too sweetish.
- Sure the Papdi Chaat included cut raw onions, sev, chopped coriander leaves, boiled chickpeas. But the most important ingredients - various sauces that make Chaat food spicy, tangy and yummy were either missing or too little was added. It is the combination of sweet, hot and sour sauces that give the fine flavor to Chaat food. Chatkaz Papdi Chaat was served with too much yogurt and too little green chutney and tamarind chutney. Hot red chilli sauce was totally missing.
- To make matters worse, the proportion of Papdi was less than the amount of sev that was added to Chaat.
All in all, my Papdi Chaat adventure at Chatkaz turned out to be disappointing since I like my Chaat spicy and tangy.
Mucho disappointed with my Papdi Chaat, I turned my attention to Samosa Chaat.
- Alas, the Samosa Chaat did not provide much consolation either.
Actually, I found it difficult to eat Samosa Chaat because the Samosas were just cut into two big pieces. In the absence of a plastic knife, there was no easy way to eat Samosa Chaat.
- The serving size of Samosa Chaat was also too small for $5.99.
- Samosa Chaat included cut raw onions, sev, chopped coriander leaves and boiled chickpeas, yogurt, tamarind sauce and green chutney. Sadly, the Samosa Chaat did not come with hot red chutney.
- There was too much yogurt even in the Samosa Chaat. Besides yogurt, there was just a sprinkling of green chutney and tamarind sauce. On the positive side, the Samosa was evenly cooked and the potato filling was garama masala spicy.
- I'd place Chatkaz' Samosa Chaat in the OK taste category but I wasn't too thrilled with it.
On the whole, my Chaat adventure at Chatkaz was dissappointing.
Papdi Chaat was sweetish while Samosa Chaat was just ok. Also the lady who took my order never bothered to enquire about my preference for spice level - mild, medium or hot.
If you are a Chaat aficionado like me, I suggest you check out Desi Galaxy
in Sugar Tree Plaza or pick up a Chaat packet from nearby Patel Brothers Indian grocery store. - © OakTreeRoad.us
Other Chaat Joints:
Samosa Chaat @ Desi Galaxy - Sheer Bliss
Lovely Sweets Iselin - Ugly Samosa Chaat
Spice Zone - Spiceless Travesty in Edison, NJ