Food Courts in Delhi

If you are short on time but still want to sample as many different varieties of food as possible in the shortest amount of time, then food courts offer a good choice. Fortunately, there are quite a few such places where you can have almost any kind of Indian food in clean surroundings at fairly decent prices. Although the food will not be the best, the convenience of finding so many varieties of food is hard to beat.

Food Courts in Delhi

Some of the more famous food courts in Delhi are in Pragati Maidan, Dilli Haat, and Kingdom of Dreams. Additionally, there area few smaller food courts in less famous places like Garden of Five Senses. Almost every big mall has a floor, usually the top most, dedicated exclusively to food. A food court in general, will have a number of small stalls serving food from all corners from India and sometimes foreign too.

If for you a South Indian food place means a joint which serves the usual idli, dosa, uttapam, curd-rice kind of stuff, prepare to get surprised. You can find many more dishes from every south-Indian state which includes Kerala, Tamilnadu, Karnatka, and Andhra Pradesh, each with it’s own stall. Even the staff belongs to that particular state for that extra authentic touch. fish and rice dish, odiya food, Indian food courtsQuality of the food might differ from one place to another even in the same premises. For example, a particular state’s stall in INA Dilli Haat food court may serve some really good food, while it may be bettered by another state in Pitampura Dilli Haat. It’s hard to find the ‘best’ , but you can find fairly good samples of food once in a while if you are patient enough. That was just a general example, but we hope that you catch the drift.

Of course, food is not the only reason to visit these food courts, as these are some of the must visit places in city. Dilli Haats for example have handicrafts, traditional clothes, furniture and other knickknacks from all over India for sale all the year round. In addition a lot of cultural events like music shows, conventions etc. are held there all the year round. Dilli Haat for example, hosts Indian Comic Con, regional music fests, art exhibitions and much more. Similarly, Garden Of Five Senses has some really beautiful and interesting flora and artistic concepts. It too plays host to numerous cultural events through out the year. Although, our Delhi city walk or food tours don’t include visit to these food courts in general, because we try to keep the food experience as authentic as possible. We do try to include them in plan if guests asks for it or wishes to attend some event under progress.
from Udaipur Food Tour http://foodtourindelhi.com/food-courts/

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India Travel Guide – Transport

This article is meant to be a brief India travel guide for tourists who need some information about means of transport in India . Anyone traveling to India for the first time is sure to be overwhelmed by the diversity of cultures, languages, people, food, climates and almost everything else. It isn’t possible to write a comprehensive India travel guide which can cover even a fraction of what a tourist may encounter in India. We aim to cover as much vital details as possible without drowning the reader with too much information. We have already posted some India travel guides on this website,:

Traveling safely and for cheap in India during monsoons,
How to keep safe from water and food related problems while traveling and
How to avoid scams and touts while traveling

This guide intends to cover some of the general issues related to transport and travel in India. So let’s begin with :

Travel by trains in India

India has the biggest system of railway lines on the planet and the service is very good, if not excellent. Traveling in India on via train gives you the chance to explore India in detail and in general is cheaper than domestic air travel. Train travel in India offers good connectivity all over India for people with all kind of budgets .For someone with an inquisitive and open mind, it’s a great way of meeting all kinds of Indian people belonging to different regions and classes. There are different types of trains with different levels of service catering to people with different budgets and needs. Trains like Rajdhani, Shatabdi are air-conditioned, fastest in India and provide meals. There are other trains like Duronto, Garib Rath, various Express and other trains which offer varying levels of service at different prices.

Apart from that, there are some luxury trains Palace on Wheels, Maharajas’ Express, The Golden Chariot and a few more. These trains are run jointly by Indian railways and tourism ministries of different states in which they operate. Journeying on these trains covers all aspects of transport, food, lodging and sightseeing. Service and level of comfort offered is among the best in world

One major drawback of trains is that it can prove difficult to procure tickets. Another one are the delays which can happen frequently on long routes. If you are very tight schedule, relying on trains for your India journey can backfire.

Inter-city or inter-state travel in India by Bus

In India, travel by bus is 2nd most popular way of cheap travel and in some cases, the only way of public transport to reach places like Manali, Laddakh etc, not yet connected by train network. There are different types of buses available on budget of the traveler. Ordinary buses are usually very crowded and it’s not possible to reserve tickets. They don’t have any air-conditioning or comfortable seats either, But they are very cheap as even a 5 hour journey may cost only Rs 100. Then there are luxury buses with better seats which may or may not have air-conditioning available. They are generally more comfortable and price for a 7-10 hour journey may vary between Rs 300 to Rs 800 for different places and operators. Tickets in air-conditioned buses cost around 1.5 times to double for same kind of seats.

Apart from these, there are luxury buses operated by private as well as government which offer maximum comfort at slightly higher prices. These buses are usually supplied by Volvo or Mercedes and have more comfortable seating arrangements than the rest.

Travel by Car

A car with driver is the most comfortable and safest way of travel in India.It is possible to get a car on rent and drive it yourselves, if you have necessary paperwork, but Indian roads are too chaotic for a foreigner. It’s better to hire a driver along with the car. Salary for driver is about Rs. 150-300 per day which is included in rent for the car and you don’t have to pay for his food or lodging. Different varieties of vehicles have different rent prices and they vary between Rs 8 per km to Rs 20 per km for most models which include Ambassador, Tata Indigo, Toyota Qualis and a few others.

Renting a car is a good option for various reasons as you have much more flexibility and don’t have to worry about following a strict schedule or missing a train or worry about tickets. Having a good driver who can communicate well also means that he can help you with finding good hotels, restaurants and other amenities easily. But be wary of drivers who act as touts. A majority of them try to take tourists to businesses which offer them commissions. It isn’t exactly illegal, but tourists should evaluate their choices before making decisions. They should make sure that they are getting good value for their money for the services availed.

Travel by motor-bikes

Using a motorbike (motorcycle) can be a great adventure if you are up to driving on dangerous roads. Royal Enfield is the most popular brand for motorcycle enthusiasts in India. It’s less fuel efficient but is powerful enough for most Indian roads including those on mountains. Motorcycles with engines of 100 to 220 cc are more common and cheaper and cam offer a mileage of 40kmpl to 70 kmpl depending upon various factors. It is possible to rent or buy new or used motorcycles. Rental cost per day for bikes vary between Rs 600 to Rs 1500 in different places for different bikes. While buying, it’s advisable to go for 2nd hand bikes which may cost anything between Rs 12000 to Rs 40000.

Travel in Indian cities by auto-rickshaws (tuk-tuk)

Auto/ tuk-tuk/three-wheeler is a good albeit slightly uncomfortable choice for short-distance travel inside Indian cities. Due to their small size, they can dodge traffic rush easily but have slow speeds which is actually good due to less safety features. Before getting in to an auto, always confirm with driver about fare. They’ll either go by distance covered on meter or ask for a flat fare. It’s different in different cities. Rest precautions are similar to those followed while hiring taxis anywhere in the world.

Well, this is gist of what a tourist should know about various modes of transport while traveling in India. We hope that it proves useful for some people. Email us at info@indiafoodtour.com or use this contact form for feedback or more information.

http://indiafoodtour.com/india-travel-guide-transport/
from Udaipur Food Tour http://indiafoodtour.com/india-travel-guide-transport/

Indian Food : Malai Kofta Recipe

How to cook Malai Kofta

Indian Food : Malai Kofta Recipe

Malai Kofta has great appeal due its creamy richness, mesmerizing taste and blend of aura. This makes it perfect cuisine which can be served for celebrating occasion or ethnic festivals. Originated in 12th Century, still it has its own charm of emanating delicious flavours.

Ingredients

For Gravy

Cream- 125 Gms.
Khoya or Paneer- 75 Gms.
Milk- 150 ml.
Cashewnuts- 50 Gms.
White pepper powder- 3 tsp.
Sugar-2.5 tsp.
Grated ginger- 2 tsp.
Nutmeg powder- ¼ tsp.
Turmeric powder- ½ tsp.
Crushed garlic- 1 tsp.
Cinnamon- 1.
Cloves- 6.
Salt to taste.
Ghee- 3 tsp.
For Kofta

Khoya- 50 Gms.

Paneer- 50 Gms.

Medium potatoes- 5.

Cashew nuts- 20 Gms.

Raisins- 20 Gms.

Chopped fine green chillies- 4.

Ginger grated- ½ tsp.

Chopped coriander- 1 tsp.

Cumin seeds- ½ tsp.

Salt to taste.
For garnishing

Grated cheese or cream- 1

Coriander powder- 1 tsp

Method of cooking :

Wash and boil potatoes.

Mix all the ingredients of Kofta except raisins.

Now shape them in small balls then flatten it put 2-3 cashews and raisin in the centre and make into ball.

For remaining dough repeat the same procedure and keep it aside.

Roast cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves together.

Dry grind those, for all other ingredients wet grind them for paste (except ghee).

In skillet, heat ghee and put all the dry powders and let it simmer on low flame for 2-3 minutes.

Now add paste and sauté it for 5 minutes.

Pour 2 cups of water and let simmer it on low flame for 15 minutes.
On tava warm the Koftas.

Place the koftas in serving dish, add the hot gravy on koftas and let it get baked for 5 minutes.

Serve it hot with the combination of butter roti or rice.
from Udaipur Food Tour http://indiafoodtour.in/indian-food-malai-kofta-recipe/

Travel India: Transport

This article is written as a short India travel guide for travelers who are searching for about suitable means of transport in India . Any first time traveler in India almost always feels overpowered by all the diverse people, cultures, food, languages, climates and more. We can’t write a complete India travel guide which can claim to be helpful in even a small percentage of situations that a traveler may come across in India. We just wish to cover as many important details as possible without overwhelming the readers. We have posted some India travel guides on IndiaFoodTour.in already. Please check bottom of post or blog for those. This one is covers various aspects of transport in India. Let’s start with :

Travel by car or private vehicle in India

A car with driver is safest and most convenient means of transport in India. Tourists can hire a car of their choice and drive it themselves, if they have necessary qualifications. But not every foreigner can handle the chaos of Indian roads. It’s much safer and potentially cheaper to hire a driver too. Approximate pay for a driver in most places is Rs. 150-300 per day. Quite often, it is inclusive of rent for the hired vehicle and the customer doesn’t pay for his food or hotel expenses. Depending upon condition and model, different vehicles can be rented for different prices. Price per km for them varies between Rs 8 per km to Rs 20 per km for majority of models in market. Some of more popular ones include Tata Indigo, Tata Indica, Ambassador, Toyota Qualis and some others.

Hiring a car gives travelers much freedom as they can travel freely without worrying about train or plane tickets and schedule. The comfort and privacy of a car over public transport is also a good incentive. If the travelers are lucky enough to find a good driver who can also speak a common language, then a lot of problems can be solved easily. It becomes easier to buy stuff or get good rooms or food. But one should be cautious of drivers who behave as touts or encourage them. These people try to promote only those business which pay them commissions without caring about comfort or safety of their own clients. Travelers should check their choices before paying for anything. They should always be sure that they get good value for their money without getting cheated.

Travel by railways in India

Indian railways has the biggest rail network in world and provides quite good service for the price. Traveling by train in India is a good way to explore various aspects of India in detail. More often than not, it is also more cost effective than local air travel, except for super luxury trains or 1st class train compartments. Indian railways offer very good connectivity almost all over India for all kinds of people with different budgets. If you are genuinely curious about meeting and knowing locals, then you should try train travel. It’s more than just a means of transport in India.

For travelers with different budgets, there are numerous trains with different levels and price of services. Some fast trains like Shatabdi and Rajdhani, are fastest in India, provide meal and are air-conditioned. Others like Garib Rath, Duronto, some Express and some more trains operate with different speeds, prices and service for different compartments and areas.

Luxury travel on trains like The Golden Chariot, Maharajas’ Express and Palace on Wheels and more is also quite popular. Traveling via these luxury trains is a unique experience and covers all points related to food, lodging, transport and sightseeing. These trains offer some of the best services in world.

One of the big disadvantage of transport via trains is that can be difficult to buy tickets due to rush. Delays also happen on long routes quite often. For travelers on tight schedules, transport in India via train is not a good idea.

Transport in India via bus

Buses are the most common mode of transport in India for short and medium distances. They are also the sole means of public transport whic connect remote mountainous places like Laddakh, Spiti which do not have railways or air connectivity. Like railways, tourists have the option of getting different levels of service depending upon their budgets. Normal buses operated by private operators as well as state governments are usually crowded, uncomfortable and don’t have any air-conditioning. Travelers can’t reserve tickets either.

Higher up, travelers can get tickets for ‘luxury’ buses which have better and more comfortable seats but may or may not have air-conditioning. Price for a 6-10 hour journey usually ranges Rs 300 to Rs 800 for different places and type of bus. Price for tickets in air-conditioned bus is generally around 1.5 times or more.

Then there are Volvo or Mercedes buses operated by private as well as government agencies which offer most comfort by means of comfortable seats, good air-conditioning, video entertainment etc. They cost about double of ordinary air-conditioned buses but it’s usually worth the price for long journeys

Transport in Indian cities by auto-rickshaws

Auto-rickshaws also called tuk-tuk or three-wheelers in different places are fairly good but bit uncomfortable mode for inter-city transport in India. They can weave through dense traffic easily due to their small size, but are not very fast. It isn’t really bad because they don’t have any standard safety features like seat belts and don’t offer much protection in case of an accident either. Always confirm how the driver will charge you before you hire one. They’ll either go by meter or ask for a set amount in different cities. Just follow the precautions that one follows while hiring taxis anywhere in world.

Travel in India by motorcycles

Riding a motorcycle is a good way of adventure if you can drive on dangerous roads. Among all the bikes available in India, Royal Enfield brand is most popular It’s powerful enough for all Indian roads but is very fuel inefficient. 100 to 220 cc engined motorcycles are more cheaper, more fuel-efficient and thus popular. Such typical motorcycle in good condition gives 40 to 70 kmpl. Tourists can either rent or buy new or used motorcycles. Rent for different motorcycles depending upon their condition andnplace of business may vary between Rs 600 to Rs 1500 If you need to buy, then 2nd hand bikes can be bought for anything between Rs 12000 to Rs 40000.

Well, this is a summary of what a traveler should know about different possible modes of transport in India while traveling. It isn’t very detailed but we hope that it may prove to be of some use to someone. Contact India Food Tour or email info@indiafoodtour.in for feedback or more information.

Our other India travel guides:
Travel India: Tourist scams to avoid
Travel India : Monsoon tourism and
Travel India: Street Food in India

http://indiafoodtour.in/india-travel-transport/
from Udaipur Food Tour http://indiafoodtour.in/india-travel-transport/

How we offer best India tour packages

There must be hundreds of tour & travel businesses in India, which offer similar custom tours and travel services as we do. Some are much bigger than us in terms of size, budget, reach etc. and may provide fairly good service too. Then why should anyone choose us over any other tour operator ? Here are some unique and unbeatable services offered by India Food Tour which may help you make the right decision:

1) Completely private and exclusive custom tours.

Unlike tours operated by other tour operators,all of our tours are reserved for a single party only. We don’t pick and mix different clients who don’t know each other in to one large group just to reach minimum group size. The car you hire, the hotel you stay in or any other service you avail from us will not be shared by anyone else. We focus on providing service tailored to individual guests instead of a large group consisting of mutual strangers. Our tours are designed according to the guest instead of the other way around. No two tours organised by us are exactly alike in terms of places visited, activities, food etc. The preferences of every single guest are taken in to account before suggesting or serving anything. .

2) Trust and safety

Unlike many other tour operators, we don’t receive any under the table commission from any business we refer our guests to. Our aim is to provide best Indian experience to our guests. You can confirm the quality of our services via reviews and testimonials written by our guests on our pages at TripAdvisor, Facebook and more.

3) More than just sightseeing

Almost all ordinary tour plans are about general sightseeing limited to only a few famous places. There are numerous fun activities and off beat places which make vacations even more interesting. We offer much more than the hectic hassle of following the schedule. You should be relaxing without any worry, not running by a rigid schedule or worrying about the plans

4) Best prices

Orccha temple and cenotaph, Best tour packages of India
Orchha

We offer the best services during all of our tours which include transport in air-conditioned vehicles, unlimited food, drinks, bottled water, wet-wipes, sanitizer and more at lowest possible price. No other tour operator is even close to providing everything that we do . Even then, our prices are amongst the lowest.

5) Custom tours

Our focus is on the individual travellers instead of a large group of tourists consisting of mutual strangers, we design our tours around the guest instead of the other way around. No two sightseeing and food tours are exactly alike in terms of food, places visited etc. The food preferences of every single guest are taken in to account before suggesting or serving anything. This avoids situations like where a vegetarian guest is stuck in a larger group consisting of non-vegetarian strangers he/she never met before.

6) Cleanliness and hygiene

We choose only a limited number of business associates who are well known for their quality of service, safety and hygiene. We don’t compromise on these factors. Foreigner tourists have different immune systems and tolerances and we do our best to make it as safe for them as possible.

7) Focus on good Indian food and awesome India experience

Chandrataal Lake, Spiti, India adventure tours packages
Chandrataal Lake

Our focus has always been on providing the real Indian experience to our guests, in which food plays an important part. We have carefully short listed some very specific items which cover best of Indian cuisine irrespective of the type of place they are served. All of our custom tours take food part very seriously

India Food Tour offers best India tour packages which help tourists explore this amazing land full of colours, life, beauty and flavours. India is home to almost one sixth of the planet’s humanity and host for numerous cultures, languages, cuisines, races and religions. A lot of people visit India every year to unwind, see some historical and natural wonders, sample the food, soak in spirituality and sometimes work. But even one lifetime is not enough to explore this dreamland.

There are numerous tour operators offering cut and dried travel services which mean one size fits all tour packages which tourists have to adjust their schedules with. Some tourists want the freedom to travel completely on their own but are intimidated by the logistics and lack of knowledge about the new and strange country. Guide books, internet forums are good, but they can only help to a limited extent. More often than not, people need someone to help them with their travel plans in a new place.

Why India Food Tour

India Food Tour is an attempt to cater to such tourists. We listen to you and offer completely unique and highly customised India tour packages which will help you explore the flavours and sights of India according to your own preferences. Tell us your budget, places you want to see, preferred mode of travel, food you want to enjoy and we’ll create just the right travel plan for you. Unlike normal tour packages, you choose all of your hotels, places you visit, mode of transport, food and everything else. We help you organise it all in to a tidy tour plan which beats any fixed package hands down. All you have to do on your part is to keep yourself and your camera batteries charged for the journey.

We don’t recommend taking what we or anyone else says at face value. You are welcome to go around and search for better deals. than our custom tours of India, With us, you’ll have the real India experience which is much sought after by tourists visiting India. You’ll see, smell, touch and taste the authentic India like it’s meant to be.

If you want more information of any type or just want to say hello, ask any question or want to design a custom tour yourself, fill up the form at our contact page or mail info@indiafoodtour.com
from Udaipur Food Tour http://indiafoodtour.com/why-choose-india-food-tour/

Travel India: How to avoid water & food related problems while traveling

Many tourists suffer from problems like upset stomach and similar illnesses by consuming unsafe water and food while traveling. Very few people are have iron stomachs and immune systems better than those special forces soldiers. But for rest of us mortals, a lot of effort is needed for just not getting sick whenever we travel for any period of time.

Travel India: How to avoid water & food related problems while traveling

This is very important people who travel abroad. Tourists will find different benchmarks of hygiene, cleanliness and different pests and germs in different places across the world. Just as an example, communicable diseases like malaria, dengue are almost completely eradicated in developed western nations, but they still claims hundreds of thousands of lives in many other countries across the world, specially in tropics. Although,this can go very detailed, time and space constraints mean that we limit this article to advice related to food and drink related hygiene and safety rules only. These general instructions which true almost everywhere. So let’s begin with

1) Water safety for tourists

a) Portable Filterschandraataal lake. water safety for tourists

Portable filters are another viable option. There are many types of big and small filters available in market. One particular portable filter is as big as a pen and is used as one would use a straw. It’s very lightweight, small and can be carried in a pocket. Additionally, you can use special bottles which come with water filter already fitted in. Most of other filters meant for home use are usually too big to carry around comfortably. If you are not carrying your own water filter, then best options are bottled water, juice or soft drinks, in that order.

b) Bottled Water

Contaminated water is the biggest source of preventable infectious diseases worldwide. A large number of potentially fatal infectious diseases can be prevented from spreading by just using safe water. Fortunately for tourists, it’s quite easy almost everywhere. One of the most convenient and cheapest solutions is to use branded bottled water. It’s easily available almost everywhere. Some people consider it expensive for just ordinary water, but considering the alternative of spending so much money on doctors and medicines, it’s good alternative. Even with bottled water, buy only the original brands and properly sealed bottles. If in doubt, leave it and buy it from some place else.

c) Chemical Filters

There are options for safe water even when you are in a place with no bottled water. Unless you are near a river source with clear fast moving water, glacier etc. you must boil and filter water before drinking. You can use water purifying tablets or drops. Sometimes it causes slight change in taste of water but it’s tolerable.

2) Food Safety for tourists

Observing basic food safety and hygiene precautions can save you a lot of trouble. In general, high end restaurants and hotels are considered cleaner than most road-side street food vendors. But this is not true everywhere. One such example is freshness of ingredients used. Majority of street food vendors prepare their dishes earlier in day or during the work hours and serve them as fresh as possible. On the other hand, large restaurants usually prepare large quantities of their most popular food items or ingredients and store them in refrigerators to be heated up just before serving.

Here are some points for you to keep in mind when eating food in India or almost anywhere else in the world:

Street food safety for touristsa) Get food only from recommended and trusted vendors

Many street food businesses have good reputations among their customers for solid reasons. If you don’t know much about a place, then take advice from your local friends, guides etc . Observing the customers is also a good way of making a choice. A good, safe food seller will have larger number of customers buying food from him compared to a non-trusted one

b) Avoid uncovered food exposed to dust and flies.

Flies and dust are major source of germs. If you see food items exposed to dust and flies, avoid them

c) Use only clean utensils.

Most street food vendors use disposable plate, spoons made of plastic, leaves, cane etc. But if metal utensils are being used, ensure that they are clean first. Use your own wipes, napkins etc to clean them if not sure.

d) Eat fresh

In some places, the food you ask for is prepared right in front of you out of semi-prepared ingredients. Not every vendor brings 100 % read to eat food with him. So, if you see food cooking before being served, it’s very likely that it’ll be fresh. A good food vendor will usually pay heed to your requests and prepare the food exactly to your requirements. But if there are other people waiting, he may have to pay more attention to others.

e) Don’t get confused with food.

People may follow all the obvious precautions related to hygiene and cleanliness, but may still end up with an upset stomach due to some unknown food intolerance or allergy. It can be difficult to avoid such incidents. In case you know about your food intolerance and allergies, confirm with the vendor before eating anything. If this is not possible , try only small portions to check whether you are okay with it. If you have no problems and like the dish, go on to enjoy larger servings. Always keep a basic first aid kit consisting of a few essential medicines for an upset stomach, antacid, antihistamines etc.

We hope this article may prove of some use to tourists searching for simple ways to avoid food or water related illnesses. Contact India Food Tour for questions, feedback or help.
from Udaipur Food Tour http://indiafoodtour.in/travel-india-how-to-avoid-water-food-related-problems-while-traveling/