Getting straight to the point, there are four major pandals you need to visit to satisfy your food cravings: K Block {Cooperative Puja}, B Block, Kali Mandir, and Mela Ground.

Before you embark on this delicious journey to CR Park’s Durga Puja, here’s some friendly neighbourhood advice:

Try not dying in the stampede
Ask for directions more than once, from different people ideally
Wear comfortable shoes
Keep your belongings close to your chest, if possible, literally
Take the e-rickshaws in between the pandals, if your feet are done with life, and you’re not
Park your car outside the barricades and walk
Attend the plethora of cultural pandals
Enjoy yourself

K Block {Cooperative Puja}

Bijoli Grill

081016_crparkpoojafood4Bijoli grill has been a regular stall here for the last 20 years and you may have come across it at Dilli Haat.

What To Order: Fish Orley, Fish Fry, Mutton/Chicken/Fish Kobiraji {Deep fried everything, with thin crisp strands of egg on top}, luchi with Kosha Mangsho {found in most Bengalis’ arteries}.

Ghalib Kabab Corner

081016_crparkpoojafood3Ghalib’s been making an appearance at the pandal for 13 years straight and also has a regular outlet in Nizamuddin.

What To Order: Chicken Tikka, Mutton Biryani, Mutton/Chicken Korma, Firni {to top it all off}.

Belly Boosters

Belly Boosters has shown up at this pandal for the very first time; you might have had the chance to gorge on their fare at Ashram, near Jeevan Hospital.

What To Order: Fish & Chips, Chicken Lollipop, Variety of Wings, luchi with Kosha Mangsho {see!}



081016_crparkpoojafood1Crispy’s coming to the pujo from just right next door {Krishna Market, Kalkaji} and yes, it’s their first time.

What To Order: Fish finger, luchi with Kosha Mangsho {you’ve begun understanding}, fish roll, Prawn Malai Curry, Kobiraji {only for Ashthami, i.e. Sunday}, Chicken Korma

Al’ Yousuf

With a shop at Ballimaran, Chandni Chowk, Al’Yousuf’s entry at the Durga Puja pandal is a bit of a surprise but a good one, we think.

What To Order: Shawarma, chicken kebab and authentic Mughlai fare

Mela Ground

Iqbal’s Mughal Kitchen

081016_crparkpoojafood9Iqbal’s only does catering, so it might be worth your while to head here and sample what they have to offer before you enlist them for an event of your own.

What To Order: Chicken Malai Tikka, Mutton Nihari, Reshmi Kebab, Dum Biryani

Mumbai Ka Kala Khatta Chuski

081016_crparkpoojafood10Mumbai Ka Kala Khatta Chuski has been a constant at the Mela Ground pandal for the last 20 years; needless to say, we’ve been making a beeline for him after every especially fiery dish. They also have a regular stall at Lajpat Nagar Central Market.

What To Order: Kala Khatta Chuski {the name is a dead give-away}, Sweet Corn, Bhel Puri, Popcorn

Kali/Shiv Mandir

Sri Jagannath Mandir stall

081016_crparkpoojafood5These first timers at the Kali Mandir have a full-time stall at Jagannath Mandir in Kotla.

What To Order: Authentic Oriya sweets, chaina gaja {baked paneer induced sweetness}, rosogulla, chaina poda {baked paneer induced sweetness, but burnt}, pheni {made out of maida, and used as prasad at the temple}

Note: There isn’t a whole lot of variety in food here, which is rectified in the next section.

Nearby Market: Market No 4

Brownies & More

081016_crparkpoojafood6What To Order: Chhole Bhature, and Chinese Chaat, on offer as a special Durga Puja treat.

Roasts N Curries

081016_crparkpoojafood7What To Order: Tandoori Momos, Tangri Kebab, Fish Tikka, Malai Tikka, Afghani Chicken, Chicken Korma

Chocolatiers, the Chocolate Boutique

081016_crparkpoojafood8What To Order: Red Velvet Cupcakes, chocolate-coated brownies {tip from the owner, Mr Obhrai: Microwave this for 30 seconds, the chocolate melts down, and add a teaspoonful of alcohol, or a dollop of ice cream}, biscotti/cookie dips

They’re also doing a puja special Dessert In A Jar {Mr Obhrai says this is re-energising survival food. Just carry it along}.

Nearby Market: Market No 2

Maa Taara Restaurant

What To Order: Rehu Fry, Chingri Sorisa

Darjeeling Momos

What To Order: Fried Chicken Momo

Madly Bangalee

What To Order: Macher Dimer Bora, Chicken Ala-kiev

En Route

Raju Da’s ‘The Singing Tree’

This is near Market  No 1, when going from the K Block to Mela Ground, and is known for its assortment of teas and flavours. Its like a regular adda with old songs playing in the background.

Raju Da claims they have everything from masala chai to qahwa and a cure for a cold, head ache or stomach ache.

What To Order: Cold Coffee with ice cream and nuts, Black Coffee, Bun Maska, Matthi/Biscuits/Rusk, Cream Roll, Iced Tea {lemon, masala, peach and plain}

Suraj Da’s Carrom Chai

081016_crparkpoojafood11Suraj Da’s chai joint is marked by authentic old people playing carrom. They may let you join them, if you promise to provide them with a challenge. This is located inside Market No 1, when going from K Block to Mela Ground.

They also have a TV on all the time, in case you’re missing being away from your beloved sports matches.

What To Order: Strong Ginger Tea served in a kullar, Coffee, Biscuits, Luchi with Kosha Mangsho {nearby. Always, nearby}.

Photos: Ronojoy Sircar