Amritsar Food Tour

Amritsar Food Tour

Amritsar Punjabi Food Tour

 

The state of Punjab is known as India’s breadbasket and Punjabi cuisine is renowned throughout India.  While the area immediately surrounding the Golden Temple is strictly vegetarian, you can find delicious Amritsari-style fish and chicken nearby.

Our friends at Hotel Sarovar Regency have developed a morning food tour and an evening food tour, both highlighting authentic and delicious Punjabi cuisine. Through these food tours, you have an opportunity to truly understand more about Amritsar by savoring its authentic world famous cuisine, including its preparation.

There are morning and evening tour options available; please click between the tabs below to see the highlights from each experience.

Morning Punjabi Food Tour

Starting point: Hotel Sarovar Regency at 08:00 AM

Lassi

Lassi

Lassi

Lassi is made by churning yogurt manually with a wooden hand blender called Madhani in special pot called Gharva. It is a sweet and cold drink, made by churning yogurt, milk, sugar and ice together, topped with a thick layer of cream. In addition to lassi, sipping simmering hot tea prepared in brass pots is also worth trying at a nearby tea shop.

We will be walking through narrow lanes of the old Amritsar city to reach the venue. We shall pass through famous Guru Bazaar it is the  one of  the oldest bazaars of Amritsar. It is called Guru Bazaar as it was established by the Fourth Master Guru Ram Dass ji himself. The Bazaar is still flourishing and is famous for gold jewelry shops.  

Poori Channa

Poori Channa

Poori Channa and Karah

Poori (also puri) Chana is typical breakfast in Amritsar, and it is very popular with the locals as well as the tourists. Poori is a round, puffed chapatti made out of wheat flour dough, mixed with a thick paste called Peethi made by grinding various lentils. Poori is served with delicious channa, a tasty chickpea curry.

Karah is a hot and sweet dessert prepared out of flour, sugar and butter oil. It is also offered as Prasad at Gurudwaras and temples.

On our way we will see the Gurudwara Guru Ka Mehal, the Birth place of Guru Teg Bhahadur, the Ninth Sikh Master. Bhord wala shivala Is located at the end of Bartan Bazaar, which is worth seeing; it is a small bazaar famous for typical Punjabi metal utensils.

Kulcha

Kulcha

Tandoori Kulcha Chholle

Kulcha is a stuffed naan, baked in an earthen oven called a tandoor. It is served with Chholle (Chickpeas Gravy and a variety of pickles). Here you can try one’s hand at making Kulchas yourself! A small workshop on making kulcha would be organized under the guidance the owner himself.

While reaching the Kulcha Joint we pay visit to the free community Kitchen in the Golden Temple, being run on 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, feeding 100,000 visitors daily on an average. During your Amritsar visit, you can also perform community service at the holy kitchen by serving the food, washing dishes, or chopping vegetables.

Fresh Juice from seasonal fruits and vegetables

You can enjoy fresh fruit juice or handpicked seasonal fruits and vegetables extracted with a traditional manual hand-operated juicer. It is a pleasure to have refreshing, pure juice without any preservatives and to watch the manual juicer being operated in a traditional way.

We can visit nearby Jallianwala Bagh, as well. This is a very important site of a tragic 1919 massacre that ultimately set the wheels in motion for India’s independence from the British Empire.

Jalebi

Jalebi

Jalebi and Gulabjaman

Both jalebi and gulabjaman are desserts which are relished hot. Jalebi is crisp round zigzag swedish made of white floor deep fried in butter oil and finally dipped in sugar sauce. Gulabjaman is round black brown ball dipped in sugar sauce. It is a fun to eat them from an eco-friendly disposable bowl made of dry tree leaves at the roadside stand along with the friendly locals.

Evening Punjabi Food Tour

Starting point: Hotel Sarovar Regency at 5:00 PM

Samosas

Samosas

Satpuda, kachori and samosa

Satpuda is a typical Amritsari snack, made and consumed in Amritsar only. Visually it appears somewhat like a patty but actually tastes quite different. It is a multi-layered sweet made of white wheat flour containing minced spiced potatoes served with mouth watering chutney and pickles. There are seven layers as “Sat” means seven in Punjabi.

Samosa and kachori are also fried snacks made of white wheat flour containing spiced potatoes and other ingredients. A typical samosa is a triangular in shape, and kachori are like a round but slightly flattened ball.  

On this portion of the tour, we can explore the green belt developed along the periphery of the Golden temple. One can enjoy the serene green landscaping in the backdrop of soul stirring Kirtan (holy music) emanating from the Golden Temple.

Bun Chholle

Bun Cholle is another dish exclusively prepared, sold and consumed in Amritsar only. It is a type of snack food, although sometimes treated as a full meal. Bun Cholle is like vegetarian burger in appearance but very different from it in taste, aroma as well as texture. A bun baked in a local bakery is cut and filled with cholle (chick peas boiled in traditional spices), one more layer of chholle is applied on the top and garnished with mouthwatering chutney and Indian pickle.

We can visit the teeming narrow lanes in the vicinity of the Golden Temple, where you can experience bazaars trading in traditional Punjabi spices pickles, jams, and syrups.

Thereafter, we can visit the free community kitchen in the Golden Temple, which feeds 100,000 visitors daily on average. During your stay in Amritar, you can perform community service at the holy kitchen by serving the food, washing dishes, or chopping vegetables.

We can visit nearby Jallianwala Bagh, as well. This is a very important site of a tragic 1919 massacre that ultimately set the wheels in motion for India’s independence from the British Empire.  

amritsar fish fry bubbysA wide variety of Non-Vegetarian street food

We shall proceed for a sumptuous dinner at a nearby dhaba on a three-wheeler vehicle (auto rickshaw). It is really a joy to pass through busy teeming roads of Amritsar on a partially open vehicle. Here one can try and relish a wide variety of Tandoori Snacks such as Tandoori Chicken, Kebabs, Chicken and Mutton tikkas,  as well gravy (curry) items such as Rara Mutton, butter chicken, brain curry, etc. Stuffed Keema naan (naan stuffed with mutton keema served with gravy) is a must try.

 

Beyond the Food Tour…

We adore eating at in the langar hall with the other pilgrims, but sometimes you want a change, too! Here are some recommendations and articles about Punjabi food.

 

Punjabi Dhabas

A Punjabi dhaba is a roadside restaurant Punjabi cuisine. Originally found on highways and on the outskirts of cities, towns, and villages, they can now be found anywhere. Dhabas were initially started by enterprising Punjabis to cater to the needs of truckers, who were also initially mostly Punjabis, for authentic wholesome, clean, and hot Punjabi food at any hour of the day or night.

Click here for a 2015 roundup of Conde Nast Traveller magazine’s favorite dhabas in Amritsar.

Bubby's Chicken & Fish Corner

Bubby’s is a delicious source of both veg and non-veg food, including their famous Amrtisari fish fry. You can check out their menu here and their Facebook page here.

Kesar Da Dhaba

Kesar Da Dhaba celebrates its 100 year anniversary in 2016, and with good reason. Check out their website here. 

Brother's Dhaba

With three locations around Amritsar, you’re sure to dine at a Brother’s Dhaba sooner or later! With amazing thalis and delicious shakes, this pure veg dhaba is a crowd pleaser. Click here to go to the Brothers Dhaba website.

100 % Vegetarian McDonalds

I know, I know—visiting McDonald’s is NOT high on your list of things to do on vacation in India. However, we get a kick out of the fact that this is a 100% pure veg restaurant—no meat, no eggs (but LOTS of paneer!) Located just a few minute walk from the Temple, this site caters to the devout of all local religions (Sikhs, Hindus & Muslims) and serves a mean chocolate sundae, to boot.

Click here for a BBC article about this all vegetarian McDonald’s in Amritsar.