Punjabi Dhabas are a joy beyond a delicious meal

December 8th, 2008 - 8:15 pm ICT by ANI  

By Sunil Sharma Chandigarh, Dec.8 (ANI): Visiting a traditional Dhaba on the highways is a unique experience. In Punjab, highways are dotted with these Dhabas, the roadside eating joints or local restaurants.
A lifeline for the travellers, these outlets are known for serving delicious local cuisine in a cosy place for all visitors, especially the truckers.
Visiting any such Dhaba on the Delhi-Amritsar highway gives an insight about their actual feel. Besides, these Dhabas offer a homely ambience and are mostly preferred by truckers for Punjabi food on the highways.
Charan Singh is one such trucker. A six by four truck cabin and an hours journey has been the mini-world of Charan Singh for over 20 years today. For Singh, who has to stay weeks away of his family and home, the roadside Punjabi Dhabas have been the biggest solace.
These truckers usually have their stopovers at Dhabas. After freshening themselves up, these truckers have their food to hearts content. Usually, the truck drivers enjoy taking their meal at these Dhabas because of their traditional ambience and homely hospitality.
Eating at any Punjabi Dhaba is a special experience. The hot and crispy Chapati is served usually with butter. The most favourite dish, however, is the fried Mah-Chole Dal”.
Charan Singh, said The Dhaba food is very delicious. Here we order for a `Tarka dal” (fried Dal) to be served with hot and crispy `Tandoori rotis”, which are cooked in traditional clay ovens. Travellers on the highway, especially the truckers, enjoy eating food while sitting at times on the cot, called Manji in local parlance. A bunch of green chillies adds to the flavour of dishes. Most of the Dhabas serving vegetarian dishes use fresh green vegetables directly brought from the nearby fields and cooked in pure Ghee. Even if one may find these roadside Dhabas a little unhygienic as compared to restaurants around at times, there are several Dhabas on the highways who ensure a good quality in terms of food and service. Kuljeet Singh, one Dhaba owner, said: We use butter in all preparations. Our specialities are `Dal Makhni”, `Chicken”, `Chilli Chicken” and `Kheer”. Our paranthas are favourite of many. (ANI)

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