Sita Ram Diwan Chand for Insanely Tasty Chole Bhature in Delhi

By Mark Wiens No Comments
This man is lucky, he smells chole bhature all day long (and probably eats it too)!
This man is lucky, he smells chole bhature all day long (and probably eats it too)!

Located in the ancient Paharganj area of Delhi, Sita Ram Diwan Chand, is a legendary institution for a north Indian speciality known as Chole Bhature (though they call it channa bhatura there – does anyone know the difference?).

After searching through (a great resource for discovering restaurants to eat at in India), I knew it was a restaurant I needed to try.

If I was the tailor, sitting outside all day making clothes, I would likely be the least productive tailer in the world – I’d be high all day from the aromas of slow simmering spicy chickpeas.

Chole bhature (channa bhatura)
Chole bhature (channa bhatura)

While visiting Delhi, this little restaurant with the bright red sign, is a must.

You won’t need a menu at Sita Ram Diwan, you simply walk up to the front counter, and tell them how many orders of chole bhature you’d like.

What is Chole Bhature (Channa Bhatura)?

Chole is a spicy chickpeas curry that’s popular throughout north India, and it’s easily the most popular Delhi street food item available. It’s creamy and smooth, riddled with spices like cumin, cinnamon, and coriander, and it literally melts in your mouth.

Bhature, is kind of like a deep fried giant puri – a ball of dough is deep fried.

At many Delhi street stalls that serve chole bhature, the bhature looks more like a pillow, a huge puffy round. But at Sita Ram Diwan, the bhatures are served flat.

The combination, served with a chili pickled carrots and chillies, is known as chole bhature (channa bhatura).

One of the greatest vegetarian meals I've ever had!
One of the greatest vegetarian meals I’ve ever had!

After fetching my order, I chose a standing table and began to dig in.

I had eaten chole bhature nearly everyday since arriving in Delhi, and this one was probably the best I had.

It’s hard to even describe the flavors of the chickpeas – they were just bursting with spice, smooth like refried beans, and with bits of red onions and chili pepper, the contrast of flavors made me melt with joy.

The bhature, though greasy, was filled with little bits of paneer cheese to make it rich flavorful.

The channa bhatura combo at Sita Ram Diwan may be a bit oily, but I’ve had few vegetarian meals as flavorful as that snack I ate there. Flavor-wise, it was the vegetarian version of Bhape Da Hotel (a must eat if you love meat).

I would probably choose chole bhature way over the parathas at Paranthe Wali Gali.

Sita Ram Diwan Chand restaurant in New Delhi, India
Sita Ram Diwan Chand restaurant in New Delhi, India

Here’s the place, you can’t miss it. It’s located in Paharganj, on Rajguru Marg, just down the street from many of the budget places to stay in Delhi.

Sita Ram Diwan Chand – Delhi, India

Open hours: 11 am – 8 pm
Price: 30 INR ($0.56) for one serving
Address: 2246, Chuna Mandi, Paharganj, New Delhi

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