Come late afternoon, and the ever-crowded market in Noida’s Sector-50 (stuffed as it is with banks, salons, stores, and more restaurants than Zomato can fit on to a webpage), gets even more so, with one corner becoming especially congested with a crowd. In North India, a mass gathering of this magnitude on the roadside usually means either a car accident or a popular food vendor.
Happily, in this case it is the latter, because over the last few years, a bright blue pushcart has been dishing out “Nano Samosas” to a vast and loyal clientele. Indeed, the mobile wooden stall, pushed into it’s usual place by around 3-4pm everyday, has become enough of an institution for become geo-tagged, which must somewhat confuse Google Maps algorithms when it is packed up and wheeled away for the day.
Officially known as Porwal Nano Samose & Pakode, the stall is owned by one Gaurav Porwal, and run by a handful of employees whose hands are always moving as they form an assembly line in which dough is separated and flattened, stuffed with the potato mixture and deftly shaped, before being quickly fried in a constantly spluttering vat of oil before finally being either served out or packed up.
The samosas themselves are, as the name suggests, miniature versions of the staple snack, and being priced at a nominal `10 for for gently steaming pieces, sliced in half and sprinkled over with chat masala along with lashes of coriander and tamarind chutneys, are literally a hot favourite.
Apart from the quotidian queuing up of bankers, hairstylists, and other employees of the market’s various businesses, the stall is also popular among local residents as well as customers who come from much further afield. “I’d come for some bank work and chanced across this stall. After trying it myself and taking some home for my family, it’s become a firm favourite. Whenever any of us are near the sector 50 market, we make a point of dropping by to get some for the house. I’ve introduced it to several of my friends too,” says 29-year-old Abhijeet Singh, a property dealer who’s come to make a nano pit-stop.
Light on pocket
The samosas themselves are, as the name suggests, miniature versions of the staple snack, and being priced at a nominal `10 for for gently steaming pieces.