Find authentic flavours of Bihar here

Find authentic flavours of Bihar here

Traditional Way

Find authentic flavours of Bihar here

The Pot Belly, an eatery perched on the fourth floor of a building in Shahpurjat, has as interesting a decor as its menu. The café which opened last year, offers mainly authentic Bihari cuisine, that is hard to find in the City, besides regular drinks and dishes like noodles, sandwiches, lemonades and tea.

Started by Puja Sahu, who hails from Muzaffarpur in Bihar, one falls in love with the café before even trying out the food, thanks to its colourful interior. This small but cozy place has a green bamboo ceiling; colourful yellow and orange bamboo lamps; simple wooden chairs and contrasting grey walls.

Talking about food, from the long list of dishes, a must try is Bihar’s trademark litti chokha. Litti or balls of whole wheat stuffed with chana dal and sattu are served with two types of aubergine/brinjal mash (chokha) – with curd and potatoes. Non-vegetarians can enjoy litti with khada masala chicken or mutton. Neither of the dishes is too spicy, unlike non-vegetarian food otherwise, which tends to on the spicier side.

Golmirch chicken is another item which will be relished by those who love to eat less spicy non-vegetarian. It is boneless chicken in creamy pepper preparation served with tawa mirchi lachha parantha and saboodana pakoras.

Aubergine mash accompanies many traditional Bihari dishes. So those of you, who enjoy rice can go for tehri, a very common dish and a staple in every Bihari household. Tehri is pulao served with aubergine mash. Non-vegetarians can go for pudina chicken pulao, Bihari chicken in mint-based rice along with boondi raita and saboodana. Madhubani thali offers traditional aloo chana served with sattu puris, onion puris and aubergine raita.

Besides, you can also choose from a range of starters like the pakora basket which has assorted pakoras and chukkas made with saboodana, aubergine, potato fried served with chutney; aloo McLaloo chop, spicy Bihari cutlets served on a bun with chutneys and saboodana poha; keema goli, spiced mutton minced balls served with mini khasta breads; and pothia machli fry, small deep fried crispy fish served with hot banana chips.

The drinks include aam panna, sweet lassi, salty and spicy lassi, thandai and sattu cooler. Sattu cooler is a salty and sour drink that has roasted gram flour, lemon, mint and jeera powder in water and can be enjoyed irrespective of the season.

The food is prepared by chefs, one of whom is originally from Bihar and rest who have been trained here. “Good and authentic Bihari food is hard to find in Delhi. I was from Bihar, I had the space and the recipes. That is how Pot Belly came into being,” shares Puja, who has been living in Delhi for the last 15 years. “Those who come here for first time order litti chokha for sure. Otherwise, people order almost everything.” 

“Because of the climb, not many elderly people come, otherwise we get people of all age groups including expats who drop in especially on weekends,” says Puja, who has trained as a fashion designer. One might have to shell out that extra buck but this is the only drawback that Pot Belly has. So, if you enjoy a mix of ambience and taste, then this is the place for you.