After a long hectic day, when all you need is some “me” time, gur chai (jaggery tea) with a slice of masala chai cake is your go-to remedy this winter season. Chaayos, a chai chain which turned four last month, has come up with an interesting menu apt for the season.
Served in a kulhad (terracotta cup) with a hint of saunf (fennel seeds), a sip of the newly introduced gur tea by the brand transports you back to the time when you were in college, free from the hassles of daily life.
The flavour of jaggery is not at all over powering, but a caution: Since it is served in a kulhad, sip on it till it’s hot as it doesn’t give you the same kind of experience when cold.
The brand has come up with 12 winter special combinations.
“We are constantly innovating on our product range from thandi chai to sambossa (their vesion of samosa), all have been our interpretation of the otherwise old recipes.
“This time we were looking at taking the Delhi market by storm and launching food items that are very unique to the winter palate and very indigenous,” Raghav Verma, who co-founded Chaayos along with another IIT graduate, Nitin Saluja, told IANS.
If you are really hungry you could binge on the kulhad pav bhaji, which is bhaji served in a kulhad topped with butter with pao (soft bread roll). Not exactly outstanding, it tastes like any other bhaji and pao we get but the plus point is that it is not at all spicy for a person like me, who has fainted on jalapenos.
What should certainly be tried here is the amazing combination of theplas (super thin, lightly spiced paratha like flat-bread, prepared from wheat flour, fenugreek leaves and other spices) and chicken called thepla tacos.
Although a little spicy, the combination of freshly made theplas and aloo bhujia meshed with chicken filling is an amazing idea that the chain has come up with. For vegetarians there is also a paneer taco.
Try the golden green tea with the tacos as it goes down well with the combination.
The new menu also includes shammi nachos (vegetarian), homemade upma, chatkaara chai and a varied range of cakes like chocolate factory cake, apple streusel cake, date and fig cake and masala chai cake.
The shammi nachos are fine but I could easily skip them and binge on the tacos alone.
Masala chai cake and date and fig cake are highly recommended for those who are willing to experiment with their taste buds. It is like Chaayos masala chai in the form of a cake and the taste will surely amaze you. Not very sweet, not salty, just perfect.
The date and fig cake is another must try.
Although a fan of apples, the streusel cake was a bit too dry, not exactly what I had imagined but then each unto his own.
If you want to leave on a sweet note the cakes are a brilliant idea, however, if you plan on ending with tea, the chatkara chai could be given a try. It is Chaayos’s version of hajmola chai. It tastes and smells of kala namak in tea but a balanced blend.
(The writer’s visit was at the invitation of Chaayos. Kishori Sud can be contacted firstname.lastname@example.org )