Camera: Ubada Mehmood & Zijah Sherwani
Video Editor: Puneet Bhatia
People across different walks of life have been hailing the power of social media after good samaritans and customers from all over Delhi flocked to Baba ka Dhaba, an eatery in Malviya nagar, in order to support an elderly couple – Kanta Prasad and his wife Badami Devi.
This happened after a heartbreaking video of the duo, expressing their financial hardships, went viral on social media.
If you happen to be in the area, you can’t miss the crowd around Baba ka Dhaba.
From YouTubers, locals, people from NGOs to big companies, people have been supporting the Dhaba with food supplies, financial aid and have been making the joint super popular.
The dhaba (eatery), which was struggling to find customers, has been serving approximately 2,000 people a day since the video went viral. From Baba’s special tea to parantha, dal chawal and their very popular matar paneer, people have become fans of the food.
Apart from janta, the couple now also has the support of their two sons. The family starts selling tea early in the morning, by 7am, and then prepare for paranthas. Dal-chawal and matar paneer are served towards the afternoon.
This breakfast-to-dinner menu used to last all day, but the situation these days is such that once the family starts preparing the food for customers, they only get a chance to relax after all of the food is sold out, at around 2:30pm.
The Special Matar Paneer Recipe
Okay! So, the best part is that Baba cooks with ‘andaaza’. He does not measure the amount of salt or masala or anything else. It’s just his 30 years of experience that adds the magic touch. Let’s start!
First goes oil, then cumin seeds and onions.
This is cooked for a while, then garlic, ginger and cashew nuts are added.
Stir... stir... stir...
Red chilly, coriander powder and two packets of matar paneer masala are added next.
Next, some salt, and of course! That’s also with 30 years of experience & ‘andaaza’.
Stir a little bit more and let it cook for 5 minutes.
Then add tomato puree and turmeric powder. Cook it for a while.
Add peas and cook it for 10 minutes and lastly, add paneer. Put a lid on and cook for another 10 minutes. Voila!
Power of Social Media
The power of social media is not just about helping this one Dhaba. It’s about the attention this has brought to many such neighbourhood food joints.
That’s the conversation and initiative this incident has shed light on. People are now supporting their local chaat wala in Agra, an aunty in Dhubri (Assam), an uncle who sells veg biryani and so on.
Even Kanti Prasad agrees that he has got enough support now and it’s time to support other local vendors.