So tell me, how many Indian dishes do you know? Plenty, right? I mean you and I eat Indian dishes all the time, but what if I tell you that even the samosa- jalebi combo that you loved as a child and as an adult was a lie (‘zalibi’ aka jalebi is from Persia and ‘sambosa’ aka samosa is also from the middle eastern regions). Yes we might not know the history of the food we eat and as long as it tastes good, who cares? But just like you say thank you to your mom for the aloo paratha, I think we all owe a little credit to the people who gave us pizzas, burgers, noodles etc. Here is a list of heartbreakers – Eh! I mean dishes, which you thought to be Indian but are not.
1. Chilli AlooNeither the chilli nor the aloo or the dish they make are Indian origin, but you categorise this dish as ghar ka khana. Chillies, potatoes and tomatoes are Portuguese brought to us by the Portuguese traders and the dish, well that happened when ‘French’ fries took a tour de India.
2. Gobi ManchurianHave you ever thought what Manchurian means? No I guess; why? Hell, because it’s tasty! Manchurian dishes get their name from this north eastern Chinese province ruled by Manchus. Somehow the dish found its way to the Indo-Chinese community in Kolkata and with Gobi, spice and everything nice Gobi Manchurians were born.
3. Aloo tikka BurgerWe all love burgers and we cannot deny that. It’s the most sought after fast food of alleged US origin though it gets its name from a German city called Hamburg. They were meant to be served with layers of spinach and thin cheese slice on top of a beef patty sandwiched in between with two bread loafs. It was the Mc Donald’s restaurant that is responsible for introducing hamburgers in India in 1996, but the problem was beef and the Indian leaders were angry, and you know ‘beef’, they have a bad habit of ‘chickening’ out when in India hence the chicken and aloo tikka burgers were invented.
4. Noodles- MaggieYes I know, this is a bummer. You have been eating this since birth (metaphorically), so how can this be happening? Maggi is responsible for the pseudo chef boom in the country. In fact every hostel in the country is filled with Maggie chef’s (as they call themselves). And every student in the country went into depression when the Bombay high court ordered ban on Maggie, yes the pain was more than getting stabbed in the chest. Well, that being said ever heard of Julius Maggi? The founder of Maggi co.? Yes, it’s 103 years he is dead, but is responsible for providing us with this magic noodles.
5. Chicken tikka masalaYes finally you have a reason to cry knowing that chicken tikka masala is not a Punjabi dish but was invented by Asif Ali from Glasgow, Scotland.
6. Coffee & teaSo coffee is from Ethiopia, smuggled by Baba Budan to India. Tea is from china brought by the British and refined sugar is brought to India by Portuguese traders. Add milk or water or both to them and viola – it’s Indian!