The Radcliffe Line was published on 17 August 1947 as a boundary demarcation line between India and Pakistan upon the Partition of India. The Radcliffe Line was named after its architect, Sir Cyril Radcliffe, who was chairman of the Border Commissions.
This line divided Punjab in two parts and then that created not just another country, but another Punjab too. If we look at pre-independence era, both Lahore and Amritsar has similar cuisine, yet they are distinctive. They are rich, however food in Amritsar gets its richness because of cream and butter and food in Lahore has its richness because of slow cooking and generous use of cooking oil.
‘Jis Lahore Nai Dekhya, O Jamyai Nai’, as said by Asghar Wajahat who was well known hindi scholar and writer – Definitely has it’s reference to both culture and cuisine. People in both the cities have different style of food and both share equal passion for food.
Post-independence, Punjab went through lot of changes; like green revolution that changed Punjab completely. Not only it became the largest producer of grains like wheat and rice but also got rich in dairy products. This now reflects in their cooking where they use generous amount of homemade butter, cream and cheese.
Arrival of Islam has influenced a lot to the food of south Asian countries including Pakistan (then India). It has also been influenced by lot of Muslim rulers who invaded India from time to Mughals too who ruled here for centuries, have their biggest influence on the food.
|lahori bharwan aloo
|Invitation to attend Amritsar to Lahore Food Festival at TGKF, The Park Plaza Gurgaon, was like a journey of pre-independence era which was impossible to miss. And it was also an opportunity to meet Chef Vakil who is the man behind the success of TGKF.
As per their official press release “As a furtherance to our culinary journey, Lahori food affair where the cuisine is as diverse as its people. Lahori cuisine has Afghan-Turkic-Iranian roots, a legacy of Muslim rule in South Asia, which got ‘Indianized’ owing to the immense usage of spices; this is especially true for Pakistani Punjabis, and Sindhis. Lahori dishes are known for comprising aromatic and sometimes spicy flavours, and some dishes often contain liberal quantities of oil which adds to a richer, fuller mouthfeel and flavor.
Another key influence in the development of Lahori food cookery was the establishment of the Mughal Empire in 1526. The opulent tastes exhibited by such Emperors as Humayun, Akbar, Jahangir, Shah Jahan and Aurangzeb in art, architecture, music, dance, and jewelry was also extended to food. A style of cookery called Mughlai’ evolved at the Mughal court and even today it remains centered in Lahore. “
|Daily changing menu with more than 450 kebabs to offer, TGKF is perhaps one of those few restaurants which has not only been able to maintain their quality, but they have also been able to retain their patrons.
Amritsar to Lahore Food Festival is on till 21st of December where apart from their regular kebabs, they have picked few kebabs from both Amritsar and Lahore. I would suggest you must not miss Galaouti kebabs which is offcource from their regular menu but then bhatti da murg, mahi motiya(fish amritsari) , murg malai tikka(amtrisar special), atishi adrakhi champ(my personal favourite, well cooked mutton chap where mutton is falling off the bones), murg kandhari pasandey(special from kandhar region of pakistan),. After eating those delicacies I really don’t think that you will have the appetite to try their main course. They also have great range of vegetarian affair that has some great kebabs from Lahore and Amritsar. If you still have apatite, then I would highly recommend you to try dal factory (simple arahar dal tadka mar ke J ), dal makhni, chicken biryani.
You must end this gastronomic journey by tasting their best Moong Dal Halwa in town(trust me) and Anjeer di Phirni that was again out of this world.
Picture Courtsey – The Park Plaza