Food is education and art merged together with spices and masalas. It is a pleasure giver and an ever satiator. Food is poetry, couplets of Zauq and Ghalib together. There is no greater adventurer in the world than a human who enjoys his/her food to the fullest.
Every dish has a legacy attached to it, a story spun through a million fibres of history and culture, leading to a chain of words that extends from one age to the another. Today’s story is just about that one word that took a King and his Kingdom by storm and still manages to take every taste bud through a sweet hurricane -- THE GALAWATI KEBAB.
The term ‘Galawat’ is a colloquial term that comes directly from ‘gala’, a Hindi term that means something that has a property of being extremely soft. Used often in describing the process of edification of food, ‘galawat’ is a virtue of anything beautifully cooked. But the term moved distant from being only a mere word, to being a whole experience encapsulated in a round, small Kebab that blows your mind every time you devour it.
The story of the coming in existence of the Galwati kebabs is one of the most repeated fables of the Indian subcontinent, lovingly so. An old Nawab of Lucknow was slowly losing his teeth because of which he could not enjoy the one thing he loved the most--food. His love for food edged on the border of becoming a maddening passion and he ordered his khansaamas to make something that he could savour as well as eat easily. After a lot of mashq and exercise, his khaansaama came up with a Kebab that was very different from anything else. As soon as he put it on his palate, the Kebab magically melted in his mouth, all spices fused on his tongue, elevating his senses as well as not requiring him to use any teeth. The sheer softness of the Kebab led the Nawab to name it Galawati Kebab.
This story proves one thing that towers over all others, food is not just an adventure, it is a whole journey in itself, a journey that often becomes your perennial escape from all things bitter in life.
Everything becomes perfect when it is soft, silky and galawati!