Diwali is not just a festival of lights, fantastic new clothes, and exciting parties. It’s also very decidedly a festival of family, friends, and food. One of the most wonderful parts of a huge festival like Diwali is the pleasure of visiting your friends, neighbours and relatives and have them come over and visit you in your home. And all this visiting involves sitting in cozy groups and munching on snacks and sweets together or walking over to your neighbors homes to drop off the delicious crunchy and sweet morsels that have been prepared in your kitchen.
‘…a festival of family, friends, and food.’
Diwali munchies likes Chakli, Gujiya, Puran Poli, Namak Para, barfi, laddu, and more are just some of the things that some mothers and aunts spend days preparing as Diwali approaches. But as we get busier and busier, the one secret of most hostesses is the elusive supplier of these homemade treats. Elusive because you can buy any of these things nearly everywhere during Diwali season, but finding a supplier who makes everything taste just as good as homemade, that is precious.
‘…her operation, churning out 2000 puran poli a day, needs absolutely no advertising.’
We’ve found one such supplier with an excellent story to boot. Pandit is a tough and fiery woman in her 60s that started off as a cook where she would earn as little as Rs.1 a month for making chapatis in peoples homes. Being the intelligent and entrepreneurial woman she was, she knew she wouldn’t get ahead unless she did something on her own. So 30 years ago, she started making and selling Puran Poli. And these delicious puran poli and along with that, a few other items, have been such a success that her operation, churning out 2000 puran poli a day, needs absolutely no advertising. Only word of mouth. As successful as they are, they don’t sell to shops, they don’t take reservations on the phone and they don’t deliver.
‘…delicious, fresh, besan laddoos, perfectly crunchy chaklis…light and crispy namak para and more.’
A self-made woman in every way, Pandit is a no-nonsense disciplinarian and a stickler for cleanliness. She runs a tight ship but her workers are all long-term and happy employees. They take pride in the fact that they have no competition and more business than they know what to do with. They make everything in house in their workshop in Goregaon and during Diwali especially, they sell out fast. They churn out over 2000 puran poli every day and along with that huge piles of chakli, besan laddoo, shakkar para, namak para, chivda and more.
We tried their puran poli at the home of a family friend and loved them so much, we went and met and were completely charmed by Pandit and her generous workers. We left with bags filled with delicious, fresh, besan laddoos, perfectly crunchy chaklis that crumble in your mouth so satisfyingly, light and crispy namak para and more. And there is such care in the preparation and packaging of these items that none of them leave you feeling like you’ve consumed deep fried snacks by the boat load.
Find Pandit’s delicious Diwali munchies at Belwankar Wadi, M.G.Road, Goregaon West. You can call on 022-28743510 for detailed directions