official entry of kebabs into India, and to Oudh region (now Uttar Pradesh), is
credited to “Sadat Ali Khan”, the ‘first Nawab’ of Oudh from Persia. Though then
the kebabs were a mere shadow of what they eventually became by the end of the
Khan dynasty. The kebabs, very much like the pilafs of those days, were
elementary and took care of basic needs of food with very little spice. It is said that soldiers on the go would catch a prey in
the evening, skin it, wash and then skew it on their swords and cook over high
fire, the original barbeque style. Once charred, salt, cumin, chilli and pepper
would be dusted on the meat and eaten off the sword. It was survival food at
its best. But taste-wise, the kebabs were chewy. Marbling (the weave and waft
of fat and muscles that makes a meat succulent) was an unknown concept then.
there are hundreds of kebabs served throughout India but Galouti, Seekh,
Kakori, shaami and Patthar ke kebab are a few ever remembered ones.
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is said that soldiers on the go would catch a prey in the evening, skin it,
wash and then skew it on their swords and cook over high fire, the original
barbeque style. Once charred, salt, cumin, chilli and pepper would be dusted on
the meat and eaten off the sword but later skewers are used instead of swords.
1. Avadhi cuisine is synonymous with the kakori kebab. There are many stories
about the invention of the kebab, including one that it was
created for the British resident, who would be in a pursuit of softer version of
the seekh kebab. The name “Kakori” is not just known for the famous ‘Kakori
Conspiracy’ of 1925, but also the delicious kebabs that go by the name of this
small town in Uttar Pradesh. Kakori Kabab is one of the most famous dishes of
Awadhi cuisine and is known for its soft texture and aroma. It is roasted in
skewers and served with rumali roti.
2. The other galawat ka kebab (kebab made using a
natural tenderizer like papaya) is what we now call the “galauti kebab”. This soft, juicy, melt-in-the
mouth patty like kebab from Lucknow got its name from its creator, “Haji Murad
Ali”. He had just one hand and hence was called ‘Tunday’. “Haji Murad ali”,
apparently used more than 150 spices in his kebab and got the guardianship of “Nawab
Wvajid Ali Shah” who wanted to eat a kebab that was soft and easy on his
toothless mouth, While the name of the maker was given to the kebab. Unlike
most kebabs that are roasted, these are deep fried in clarified butter.
3. The galauti is actually a simpler kebab to make than the shami kebab. The shami kebab involves
minced meat and chana dal, cooked with
whole spices tied in a muslin cloth (potli masala), then grinding
the two together, shaping them and then cooking the kebab. It is a dual process of cooking. The galauti involves just one-time cooking, so it is less
labour-intensive and easier to do in commercial set ups.
A popular kebab in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, it is made
with meat, chickpeas and egg. Eaten as a snack and an appetizer, the kebab goes
back to the Mughal era when Syrian cooks invented it in the emperor’s kitchen.
Bilad-al Shaam was the old name of Syria.