On a friend’s recommendation, Rahul Verma goes to Gulab in Indirapuram to taste its samosas, golgappas and kachoris and returns home happy

My friend Mohan is not much of a foodie, but if he likes something, he really likes it. He enjoys simple food and doesn’t really hold forth on dishes the way my other (opinionated) friends do (though I do remember salivating once at his description of eating rice and sambar with crispy fried papads). So when Mohan went gaga about a sweetshop called Gulab in his neighbourhood, I was interested.

I was introduced to Gulab with a box of kheer kodom (Rs 460 a kilo) that he had brought for us a couple of months ago. The sweet was delicious, and surprisingly stayed fresh over the several days that we took to demolish the lot. Then, after some days, Mohan started — again surprisingly — waxing eloquent about Gulab’s samosa. He was so lyrical about it that I thought I had to pay the sweetshop a visit.

How to reach

I went to Indirapuram in Delhi NCR last week in search of Gulab. If you are approaching Indirapuram from Delhi on NH24, turn left at the third traffic signal after crossing the border. You’ll see multi-storeyed flats on your right. Take the second turn right and you’ll find Gulab on your right. It’s quite a well known sweetshop, and, as it proudly states, has been “serving since 1912.”

Gulab, I realised on entering the shop, is not just a sweetshop but a mini restaurant with a huge menu. You get all kinds of sweets, of course, and the usual samosas, kachoris and chaat papri that you find in many sweetshops. But they serve other kinds of savouries too — from ildis, vadas, utthapams and dosas to pao bhaji, chholey bhturey, cutlets, pakoras and chillas. Then there are mini meals (veg biryani with raita for Rs 120, rajma rice or dal makhni with rice or parathas for Rs 110 and chholey rice or kadhi rice for Rs 100).

There is a Chinese section, too, with noodles (Rs 90) and fried rice with chilli paneer (Rs 125). Vegetable grilled sandwiches are for Rs 80, mushroom pizza for Rs 165 and Gulab special pizza for Rs 175.

I concentrated on what had been recommended to me — samosas. And since I am bit of a kachori freak, I asked for some matar kachoris too. And since the family likes golgappas, I added a plate of golgappas to the order. The golgappas were packed well — the discs in a plastic packet and the green watery chutney and the sweet red saunth in separate, sealed containers.

I have to agree with Mohan — the samosa (Rs 12) was excellent. The filling had potatoes which had been flavoured with spices, cashew nuts and raisins. What was interesting was the outer casing, which wasn’t thick, nor very thin (as eastern samosas are). The casing was crispy and flaky – and not dripping with oil either. The kachoris (Rs 12 for a piece) were good too (though one seemed a little stale). The golgappas, which came with a filling of potatoes and channa, were crunchy, and the chutneys were just the right mix of sweet and sour.

Gulab has other kinds of kachoris (dal and onion), which sound tempting. But I’ll wait for Mohan to try them out first. Must say, it’s nice to have an apprentice.

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