A visitor and his guide in Delhi ignore the tourist's taboo against street food to snack on dosa, uttapam and KFC's

一位訪客及他的向導在德里無視了游客對路邊攤小吃卷餅、薄煎餅和肯德基的禁忌。

Finding good street food in Delhi, India

(編注:原文配圖)

DELHI, INDIA — Delhi, India, is closed today.

德里,印度——德里,印度,今天關閉了。


Receiving this piece of early-morning information, I am all set for empty sidewalks. The occasional whining ambulance. Maybe a bus.

早上接到這個消息后,我為空曠的街道做好了準備。偶爾會有鳴叫的救護車。也許是公交車。

But when we leave my rented car near the Defence Colony, it is impossible to move. Trying to walk, I am blocked by the backs of shirts and jackets and saris. An undertow that I do not understand is keeping me in place.

但是當我們在國防區附近下車時,簡直無法移動。試圖行走的我被各種穿著襯衫夾克和紗麗的人堵在那里。一種我不明白的逆流將我留在了那兒。

My guide tugs me into a doorway. I am panting. Sweating. "What," I ask, "is going on?"

我的向導將我拖進了一個門廊。我在狂喘。大出汗?!笆裁辞闆r?”我問。

"Crowded," explains Gupta.

“擁擠的人群,”Gupta解釋道。

I can see that, I say. "But you said Delhi was closed."

我知道,我說?!暗阏f德里今天關閉了?!?

Gupta compresses his face. His eyes are economized into coin slots. "It is closed," he says. "But people have errands. They are hungry. Come with me."

Gupta皺緊了他的臉。他的眼睛瞇得跟投幣口一樣?!笆顷P閉了,”他說?!暗藗冞€有差事。他們會餓。跟我來?!?


Our early lunch turns out not to be as filling as I'd thought. "Listen," I say. "I hate to admit this, but I'm still a little hungry."

結果我們的早午餐不是像我想的那樣能填飽肚子?!奥犞?,”我說?!半m然我不想承認,但是我還是有點餓?!?

Gupta examines me.

Gupta審視了我一下。

An analytical man, he watches more than he talks. "Ah," was all he'd said yesterday morning when I'd been lost. Out of a stripe of shadow, Gupta appeared.

一個善于分析的男人,他看的比說的多?!鞍?,”就是昨天早上我迷路的時候他的全部語言。在一片陰影中,Gupta出現了。

"I do not need any help," I had announced. "Ah," replied Gupta, watching, watching. "Ah." He then unfurled his map.

“我不需要任何幫助,”我當時宣布?!鞍?,”Gupta回答,看著我,一直看著我?!鞍??!比缓笏蜷_了他的地圖。

"How about a snack outside?" I suggest. "You could find a vendor. Same south Indian food, let's say, but simpler."

“出去吃個小吃怎么樣?”我建議道?!澳憧梢匀フ覀€小販。還要這樣的南印度食物,呃,但是更簡單一點?!?

"Tourists do not try this," he says. "Even at a clean place, well, I cannot risk it."

“游客不吃這個的,”他說?!凹词故莻€干凈地方,我也不能冒這個險?!?

The risk is mine, I say. Let's go.

出了事算我的,我說。走吧。

Street food here, I have read, is a regional thing. Stalls in Delhi and Mumbai will have different techniques and tastes. A few years back, in 2007, there was a push to enforce new sanitation standards and set up "vending zones" with electricity and running water.

我曾經讀到過,路邊攤是個地域事物。德里和孟買的食閣會有不同的技術和口味。幾年前的2007年,曾經強制推行過新衛生標準,并建立有電和自來水的“販賣區”。


"We call this [street] food chaat," says Gupta, lecturing while I drive. He tells me about a typical sidewalk snack called pani puri, a deep-fried shell made from wheat or other flour, full of boiled potato and tamarind juice. Some of the foods, he adds, will give us tastes of yogurt. Chickpeas, "maybe mint" and peanuts.

“我們把這個叫做chaat,”Gupta說,他趁我開始的時候開始給我科普。他告訴我了一個叫Pani Puri的特色路邊小吃。這是一種炸透的脆殼,用小麥或其他面粉做的。里面滿滿都是煮熟的土豆和酸角汁。他還說,有一些會吃起來像酸奶的味道。鷹嘴豆、“有的有薄荷”以及花生。

Fine, I say. All fine.

好,我說。都很好。



"Here, you can get more than bite-sized," says Gupta, ordering a masala dosa. For me, he sexts the same regional dish I'd tried at the restaurant: uttapam with tomato and onion.

Gupta說:“這更實惠點”,點了一份 masala dosa。對我來說,他選的這個地方食物: 番茄和洋蔥的做的煎薄餅,我更想在飯店吃.

Uttapam, I say. "Sounds like a prescxtion."

Uttapam(譯注:薄餅)——我說,“聽起來像是一個藥方?!?

"Probably no one gets sick here," assures Gupta.

“沒有人因為這個生病,”Gupta保證道


My uttapam looks the same as it did at lunch: a cross between a pita and pancake. Its toppings seem to be trapped inside. Gupta pours on Day-Glo green and orange relishes without checking first. "Hey," I say.

我的印度薄煎餅看上去跟午餐吃得一樣:介于皮塔餅和煎餅之間。它的澆頭看上去是裹在里面的。Gupta沒有檢查就把那些紅紅綠綠的佐料倒了上去?!昂?,”我說。



Uttapam tastes like the world's purest pizza. After I'm done, I try a bite of Gupta's masala dosa. It's scrolled up like a crepe. Biting into its quick-fried outer pancake, I get a surprise: a molten core of lentils.

印度薄煎餅嘗著像世上最純粹的披薩。我吃完了以后,又咬了一口Gupta的咖喱土豆卷餅。它就像一個可麗餅那樣卷著。咬開它那油爆過的外皮,我有了個驚喜:里面都是綿熱的小扁豆。

I wave my fork at Gupta. It is missing a prong. Gupta waves his back.

我向Gupta揮動著我的叉子。它缺了個尖頭。Gupta也揮了揮他的。

His eyes are following my progress. I add a dab of relish myself — a pink one that makes my food look almost preppy, mixed with the green.

他的眼睛一直盯著我的動作。我自己又加了少許佐料——一種粉色的小菜,混著綠色,讓我的食物看上去花花綠綠的。

"Now," says Gupta, motioning that I should finish. We move on.

“現在”,Gupta示意我應該走了,我們繼續前進。


I can see that, I say.

我說,我能看見。


My cup of Tamil coffee is like liquefied candy with caffeine. "These beans get roasted," Gupta announces. "They are powdered. You use only hot milk!"

我那杯泰米爾咖啡看起來像加了咖啡因的液態湯鍋?!斑@些豆子烘烤過,”Gupta聲明,“它們被打成粉。只加上熱牛奶?!?

I promise, I say.

“好的,我喝”我說。

Something at the bottom of his cup gives Gupta an idea. "Enough," he says. "We go now. Time for different tastes."

杯子底部的什么東西給了Gupta一個靈感?!皦蛄?,”他說?!拔覀冏甙?。該嘗嘗不一樣的東西了?!?


I turn and leave. Now it is Gupta chasing. "Let us try it," he says.

我轉身要離開。Gupta追了上來?!拔覀冊囋囘@個,”他說。

No, I repeat. This is India.

不,我重申道。這可是印度。

But we get caught in a pedestrian eddy that is swirling us toward a group of stores. Gupta is pointing. A red and yellow restaurant: one-half Pizza Hut, one- half KFC.

但我們陷入了一股人流中,把我們卷向了一排商店。Gupta指著一個紅色和黃色的餐館:一班是必勝客,一半是肯德基。

I start to protest. Too late. My guide is focused, narrowing his eyes.

我開始抗議。但太晚了。我的向導很專注地瞇起了他的眼睛。


"Like in America," says Gupta. It is not a question. He passes me my share of the Zing Kong's contents: a fried chicken patty on a bun, a chicken thigh and a side of fries.

“跟美國的一樣?!盙upta說。這不是個問句。他遞給我我那部分的金剛盒,里面是:一個面包,上面有炸雞肉餅,一個雞腿和一些薯條。

The KFC is spicy. It's not like home at all. For the first time today, I am feeling slightly queasy.

肯德基很辣。一點也不像美國家里的那樣。我今天第一次感到有些惡心。

OK, I say. Time for some pizza. I pick a Pizza Hut-India Teekha Veggie (99 rupees, about $1.85) that's topped with chiles, marinated tomatoes, capsicum, cheese, onion, red paprika, paneer — a type of curd cheese — and baby corn.

好吧,我說。該吃點披薩了。我點了個印度必勝客Teekha素披薩(99盧比,大于1.85美元),上面是辣椒、腌番茄、洋蔥、芝士、甜椒、紅辣椒粉、印度奶酪——一種干奶酪——和小玉米。


"Need some ketchup?" asks Gupta. He saturates his slice with Heinz.

“需要番茄醬嗎?”Gupta問。他在他那片上抹滿了亨氏番茄醬。


I am getting full. But this sounds worth a try.

我飽了。但這個聽上去值得一試。

Shall we split one? I say.

我們能分著吃一個嗎?我說

Gupta stares. His eyes are like perfect lentils. His mouth is in an upswing. There is the start of a definite curl.

Gupta凝視著我。他的眼睛就像完美的小扁豆。他的嘴角在上揚。這將是一個明朗的答案。

Delhi may be closed for the day. But C.K. Gupta is smiling.

德里在這一天關閉了。但C.K.Gupta卻在微笑。

We are in northern India, and it is time for dessert.

我們在北印度,現在是甜點時間。

So far on my India trip, I have been splurging. The deals are good. My hotel, the Leela Kempinski Gurgaon, has a name that's hard to say. But it's enormous and shiny, with on-site restaurants that are like horns of plenty spilling meats and fruits and cheeses from around the world.

我的印度之行到目前為止,我一直在大肆揮霍。這些交易都不錯。我的旅館, the Leela Kempinski Gurgaon,有一個很難說出來的名字。但它寬敞亮堂,還有個現場制作的餐廳供應來自世界各地的大量肉類,水果和奶酪。