Tuesday, 3 January 2017

What do Pakistani's eat? Part 2

Hi guys! A couple posts back I answered the question "What do Pakistani's eat?" and today I'm back with another post to follow up on my answer. And as promised; this post is a bit more culture-centered than the previous one, where I talked about McDonald's and other fast food joints.

I did something different for this post. Instead of talking about just one place and one meal, I'm going to talk about two 😆 and because I love sugar, there's also a "snack". You'll see what I mean later.

Lets start off with breakfast. Like most students on vacation, I had breakfast around 1 p.m. My friend (Hi Palwashay!!) and I met up at a local cafe for breakfast recently. My prior experience with the cafe was horrible, they gave me under-cooked pasta (URGH!!!) ....but I decided to give the place another shot because it was conveniently located nearby, and we were hungry.....and my friend wanted to go to the bookstore right next to it any way...so, convenient.

I ordered a Mexican omelette and my friend ordered two scoops of chocolate gelato. Can you see why I'm friends with this girl? Our mutual love for chocolate and our mutual hate for half our school's populace really cemented the bond 😁


Right so moving back on topic....I ordered this omelette because it had black olives, mushrooms and feta cheese in it, and though I would have preferred yellow cheddar, it was still delicious. My plate did arrive with four pieces of toast and a serving of butter but like I said before, I was hungry...so I ate the piece of toast before I took pictures. I also had a huge bite of the omelette but I very cleverly concealed that with my watermark hehehe.
The omelette also arrived with a hash brown, some jam and a grilled tomato and I think they accidentally put those roasted peas and potatoes on my plate but I was happy 😆 Foodies, I tell ya!

Eggs are an essential part of breakfast here in Pakistan; as oatmeal, pancakes, waffles, breakfast sausages and breakfast cereals really aren't part of the culture here. That's not to say that we don't eat this stuff here, I mean, you would never have caught me without having had my trusty Koko Krunch for breakfast, but its just not the general custom in most households. In fact, we actually have a saying here in Pakistan (and India as well, I'm sure) that goes: Sunday ho ya Monday, roz khaao anday (Whether its Sunday or Monday, you must eat an egg every day). I know I'm not the only one who's heard this from her dad because I heard my uncle telling my cousin the same thing once. And I don't know where this egg loving saying came from...maybe it was part of the Health Ministry's campaign once....but the phrase really took root in the hearts of Pakistani dads.

While we're on the subject of Pakistani culture, now would be a good time to introduce to you cholay (chickpeas). I know its something you guys may already be familiar with because that's what hummus is made of...but we eat them here a little differently. The chickpeas are boiled, and served with an array of spices, tamarind sauce, tiny chunks of boiled potatoes and chopped onions. You can choose to then add in yogurt and customize your plate to your liking with the tamarind sauce and masala (spice). The chickpea dish is then called either chaat or simply cholay. Its sort of the ultimate comfort food. And it looks somewhat like this;
A typical plate of cholay

Cholay up close

It does fill me up so I do count cholay as a meal. Cholay are best eaten warm, in the back seat of a car, and with a bottle of coke. Oh and the customization of the plate is done with this nifty little tray that holds salt, two varieties of masala, two kinds of tamarind sauce; sweet and sour, and yogurt.

Yumminess increaser
Now after eating the plate of cholay for lunch, you would want to eat something for dessert. And if that something is a bakery cookie, then you know you can't eat just one. And if you're like me and your only weakness is sugar, then its no longer just a cookie. It is actually a snack.

All I need in life.
These cookies come from traditional bakeries. The family business kind. And more often than not these businesses have been up and running for generations. I don't know what they put in these cookies, all I know is that we bought a lot of them on the 31st of December and by the time the sun set on the 1st of January, they were all gone. Honestly, if you don't live here and ever find yourself in Pakistan, ask for chocolate cookies from the bakery. You will thank me. And if you do live here and also love these cookies and know how to make these, please  LET ME KNOW 💓💖💓💖

I could continue to sing praises for these incredible cookies but its already making me hungry. So I guess this wraps up this post for what Pakistani's eat. I hope you guys liked it and I hope 2017 is off to a great start for everyone. 

--Chandni.

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