BREAKFAST AT BASANTAPUR
Photos: Bibhas Maharjan Suwal
Basantapur Square is the perfect blend of modern culture and ancestral traditions. Still predominantly a Newar community, much of the Durbar Square reflects the rich culture of
the ethnic group. Amongst the many virtues of the area, the local food is something worth giving a try. Apart from the local momos, chattamari, lakhamari and other local delicacies the breakfast menu has an appeal of its own.
While the weekdays of the week are often a hurried affair when it comes to breakfast, many families indulge themselves with tasty oily breakfasts on Saturdays. The most popular amongst which are the malpuwa, Gwalamari and local doughnuts.
You might have tasted the best doughnuts in the world in a number of flavors, but nothing beats the taste of the local doughnuts deep fried in oil.
Cooked over a kerosene stove, in an overused pot and served steaming in a short thick glass. Hands down, one of the best ways to have your tea.
Its literal translation in newari is “round bread”, and it fits its name perfectly. Its subtle taste comes out best when you have it while still hot with a steaming cup of sweet milk tea.
• 1/2 kg Flour (Atta)
• 1/2 tbsp Baking powder
• 1/2 tsp Ginger and Garlic paste • 2 cups of Water (approx.)
• Sunflower Oil ( for deep-frying)
Combine the flour, baking powder, ginger and garlic paste and salt in a mixing bowl. Carefully add the water, stirring continuously, until the flour becomes a thick paste. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the fridge overnight.
Heat the oil in a deep saucepan. Stir the dough with a large metal spoon to deflate. When the oil is ready, take a small ladleful (about 30g or 1 1⁄2 tbsp) of the dough, make a small ball, place it gently into the oil. Fry for 4-5 minutes or until golden brown and crisp on the outside.
Remove the gwaramari from the oil with a slotted spoon. Rest on paper towel to drain excess oil. Serve.
This is a rich, soft fried pancake with a firm crust all around. It’s sweet on the palate and a combination of chana tarkari properly complements the dish. But a cup of tea works perfectly fine as well.
• 2 cups Wheat flour (or you can mix half all purpose and half wheat flour)
- 1/2 cup Sugar (or to taste)
- few Black Pepper whole- 5 piece
- Oil- for deep frying
- Water/milk- 2 cups
- 1 tbsp fennel seeds (saunf)
- Shreded coconut flakes (optional)
Mix flour, sugar, shredded coconut flakes, fennell seeds, and black pepper with 2 cups of water. The batter should be semi thick. Let it stand for a few hours. Heat the oil and scoop a small amount of batter into the hot oil. The size of the malpuwa can be altered as necessary. Slow cook one side of the malpuwa until it turns red/brown color. Then flip it.