As we are about to complete 6 years of Hunger Inc we wanted to start sharing stories that we discovered along the way! Interesting snippets through our research, anecdotes beyond the kitchen pass, stories that are shaken and stirred at the bar and lots of hungry tales. And to kick things off, we thought why not start with where it all started?
With that plate of the Eggs Kejriwal that walked out of the kitchen on opening night.
The one dish that stood the test of time across these 6 years and brought us to where we are today.
Renditions of the Kejriwal are found across the city, so we didn’t quite invent this one but needless to say it has the Canteen touch. The dish merely has three ingredients: a runny egg, some cheese, chopped green chillies and a dollop of chutney. And well a good chutney is what makes a good Kejriwal a great one and brings it all together.
Now here’s the funny part. The chutney that our Kejriwal toast sits atop was never supposed to be there. It was meant for another dish.
One day before opening night, when our kitchen was prepping in full swing, our chefs were cutting the bread for our Bunny Chow. A Bunny Chow is basically a dish where a round loaf of bread is cut in half and the bottom is used as a bowl to hold a piping hot curry. All the other halves were cut and kept aside on a tray. A few of our team members took a few of those halves, added an egg, some cheese and the same chutney that wasn’t finding a place on our menu. And it tasted like a winner! It was simple yet so sumptuous!
Call us crazy but we thought, why not run it as specials on opening night? Well, it ran as specials, was ordered by a few guests and food reviewers that night, was polished off their plates and well the rest is history.
A lot of people have speculated in the past whether the dish has been named after a particular chief minister but nope! This has a rather funny story. It was actually named after a gentleman by the name Devi Prasad Kejriwal who was a frequent visitor at the Willingdon Club in Bombay. He was completely vegetarian at home but loved eggs! Since enjoying a plate of eggs was never an option at home, he thought of getting his fix at the Club. Now the thing about these Clubs is that since its a ‘members only’ scenario, everyone knows everyone and well everyone knows everything about everyone! So many also knew that Mr Kejriwal was vegetarian. One day, he walked in carving a plate of eggs.
He told the server to disguise the eggs in a way that it would go unnoticed to those around. The brief was taken rather seriously. The server went into the kitchen and explained this to the cook. The cook added cheese, chillies and lots of chutney on top of a runny egg and that's how this humble dish came into being. A rather delicious accident. Many other visitors saw him order this regularly and well it became quite a club hit.
If you look at our Kejriwal toast even today, the brioche is cut like the same Bunny Chow half.
Isn’t it serendipitous how some of our favourite foods have come about by accident? What is your favourite #indianinspired food accident?