If you’re a globe-trotter, India must be on your bucket list. Travelers from all around the world are attracted to this country’s vibrant culture, beautiful traditions, colorful festivals, and of course, exotic food. From pristine beaches and majestic desert to iconic historical monuments and gushing waterfalls, this country has a lot to offer.
When we talk about India, it becomes impossible to resist talking about the tastes and flavors here. The country takes pride in offering some of the world’s best curries to tingle your taste buds. However, thinking that it’s just rich and spicy gravies that India has to offer can be a big mistake. One of the biggest tourists’ attractions here is the “Street Food.”
For every food lover, the street food in India is a perfect delight. So, if you’re planning to visit India soon, you certainly can’t resist street food. However, tourists here are often wary of tummy troubles, especially those who’re not used to eating a lot of spicy food. If you want to know what street food to eat without getting sick, read further. In this post, we’re going to discuss how to avoid getting sick from street food in India. So, here’s your perfect guide to experience Indian street food, without worrying about an upset stomach.
Eat where the locals eat
The easiest way to decide where to eat is by looking at the line of locals at the stalls. The street vendors with the longest line of locals show their popularity among the residents. Indian street food typically uses fresh produce, traditional recipes and lots of spices. So, it is best for you to ask locals around about the food to understand if it’s safe for you or not. Moreover, look for stalls with customers of both genders and of different age group.
Look for fully cooked food
As mentioned above, eat where locals eat. This is right, but often chances are that the local populace is more or less immune to the street food. Since no street vendor wears gloves, you need to remain cautious of the food handlers. The best rule of thumb is to eat what’s freshly cooked in front of you. Better to go for fried food because the heat kills most bacteria. Once you’re on the street, look for grilled or deep fried snacks. A potato patty (aloo tikki), dosa, corn grilled with lime and salt are definitely worth trying. However, chutneys (local sauce) are to be avoided as they’re made with unfiltered water. It’s absolutely okay if the vendors re-fry your snack. It’s a common practice in India to partly cook the snacks first and fry them hot again that will kill harmful germs if any.
When gorging on Indian street food, it is always a better choice to stick to vegetarian dishes. This advice is for those who’re not experts in identifying stale meat. But this doesn’t mean that “non-veg” is a strict NO. There are some extremely popular stalls of shwarma, kebabs, and tikkas that grilled chicken/mutton right in front of your eyes. A huge crowd indicates that this stuff moves fast and it’s unlikely that there’s any stale food being sold. Moreover, at most of the stalls, marinated meat is hung on skewers before grilling, so don’t confuse it for stale food.
Avoid cold beverages or fruit shakes
You certainly need to avoid the street drinks that are not hot. This is because there are high chances that the water is unfiltered and not boiled. Also, the ice used to chill the drink is also made from unfiltered water. In the case of fruit juice, you must ensure that the vendor has fruits juiced freshly right in front of you. When in India, chai (tea) is a must-have drink. Chai is something that you can have at any place, even at a bit unhygienic stall. All you need is just to ask for paper cups.
With some little precautions, so are set to gorge into lip-smacking Indian street food. However, if unfortunately, you fall sick in India, blaming the street vendors can be unfair. Maybe you hadn’t washed your hands before eating! There are limitless matchless Indian flavors to be savored, so don’t mistake to avoid the local dishes. Just be a little cautious and take pleasure in trying exotic Indian cuisine!