There's also a photo of me in a red saree, looking like a little blimp. I swear I am not this fat! It's the *others* who were tall and slim, dammit!
Hungry Kya? Take a Walk!
by Mahafreed Irani
Sep 25, 2010
Times of India
For tourists who want to skip the clichêd tours of Mumbai, culinary walks are an interesting alternative. "Food is one of the most interesting ways of understanding a culture, " says Deepa Krishnan of Mumbai Magic, a tour company that organises food walks in the city. "Tourists are increasingly looking for more insightful and interesting experiences than merely visiting monuments.
Bazaar walks and cuisine trails help to showcase some very rich aspects of Indian society. " The Mumbai Magic food walk starts with a guided tour around Matunga market and ends with a cooking demo and tasting of traditional food at an Indian home. While at the market, a culinary expert guides tourists around various food-speciality shops. Even though Matunga isn't a tourist area, Krishnan chose the market as it has a number of eateries and stores that sell regional ingredients. "Most foreigners have limited knowledge about Indian cuisine and may have only tasted Punjabi fare like butter chicken, " she says pointing out how they are surprised that Indian food is not as spicy as they have been led to believe. "Regional food is a pleasant discovery for them."
The package which costs Rs 1, 000 per person for a guided tour for six includes a visit to a Gujarati, Parsi, Goan or South Indian home. During the visit, tourists can choose to participate in the cooking process of a traditional meal or sip on some Indian wine and observe the cooking. The demonstrators have been flooded with queries like, "Can we peep into your fridge?" and "Please explain the use of these unfamiliar cooking gadgets", says Krishnan referring to tourists who were curious about metal tongs.
Krishnan also organises food trails in Delhi, Agra, Jaipur, Chennai and Kottayam. In Kerala, the walk includes visits to a private spice plantation, paddy fields and toddy shops and in Jaipur, tourists learn how Rajasthani cuisine has been influenced by the hot climate and scarcity of water.