Anant Ambani and Radhika Merchant’s wedding is in full swing with celebrations having already kickstarted. This event is nothing short of a royal event, and needless to say, it is set to tantalize taste buds with a Traditional yet luxurious culinary experience.

According to reports, guests at this high-profile event will be treated to the famous chaats of Varanasi served by the famous ‘Kashi Chaat Bhandar’, bringing a slice of the holy city’s street food culture to the celebration.

This unexpected choice highlights the family’s connection to India’s rich culinary heritage and promises to add a flavorful twist to the wedding festivities.

Origins of the ‘chaat’

According to Chef Tarveen Kaur, “During the Mughal era, when Shah Jahan was the ruler, the cholera epidemic caused a lot of devastation. The court’s hakeem, Hakim Ali, suggested making dishes that were high in salt, sugar, and spices to keep the bacteria in food at bay. This led to the creation of the concept of chaat, which literally means ‘to lick’,”

But, what makes Varanasi’s chaats so special?

Chef Aditi Dixit, CYK Hospitalities Pvt. Ltd., says, “The chaats from Varanasi, specifically from Kashi Chaat Bhandar, passing their legacy from 50 years, are unique due to their traditional recipes, passed down through generations, and the use of locally sourced ingredients like fresh vegetables, herbs, and spices.”

Festive offer

She adds that the city’s chaat vendors have perfected their craft over centuries, creating a distinct flavor profile that blends tanginess, sweetness, and spiciness. This unique combination of traditional recipeslocal ingredients, and expert preparation has made Kashi Chaat Bhandaar’s chaats a staple of Varanasi’s culinary identity.

Chef Kaur elaborates, “The cultural and religious impact on food plays a major role as the land is filled with devotees of Krishna who have popularized dairy and dairy products, so there is an abundance of ghee and curd used throughout the chaat scene in Varanasi. “

Ghee however makes the chaat stand out, she says. “The chaat served in Varanasi is warm, comforting and filling, as opposed to a mere light snack that is prevalent in the other regions of India.”

chaats, Varanasi, Ambani wedding Anant and Radhika are set to tie the knot on July 12 (Source: PTI)

Preparation process and key ingredients for some of the popular chaats

Chef Dixit mentions the preparation process along with the key ingredients for popular Varanasi chaats to be served at the Ambani wedding:

Tikki: Crispy potato patties made with boiled potatoes, onions, garlic, ginger, and spices, served with a dollop of tamarind chutney and yogurt.

Tomato Chat: Fresh tomatoes mixed with onionsgarlic, ginger, and spices, topped with a tangy tamarind sauce and crispy sev.

Palak Chaat: Spinach puree cooked with garlic, ginger, and spices, served with crispy fried bread and a dollop of yogurt.

Chana Kachori: Crunchy fried bread puffs filled with a spicy chickpea curry made with onions, garlic, ginger, and a blend of spices.

Role of the presentation and serving style play in the overall experience of enjoying Varanasi’s chaat

Chef Kaur says that there are a couple of things that can be kept in mind while serving the Banarasi chaat at such a big event. “One can serve the chaats in mini earthenware like kulhad or baati to give people the authentic taste of Varanasi. And as per my opinion, that actually Contributes to the taste of the chaat as well.”

The other approach can be to serve smaller tasting portions in fancy crockery and serve ware to match the overall theme of the wedding, she remarks. “This will give a great opportunity to the chefs to explore their creative side.”