Street Food

The smell enticingly floats along pavements lingering around street corners; a temptress seducing pedestrians
Appeasing hunger when there’s no alternative
Satisfying stomach and wallet in equal measure
The expectation of street food during the working day is a lifeboat towards the salvation of the lunch hour and a balm that soothes the pain of work afterwards

There are happy faces sitting by the Gokhale Road North food stands this lunchtime
The vendor performs, as he has done every day with basic equipment, simple ingredients and an inhospitable environment


Oil squeezed high above his vast wok from a plastic bottle greasy after years of use; chopped onions tossed artfully around his back each one finding the pan and then thrown up in the air with a skillful shuffle and flick

Within moments the principle ingredients are artfully mixed and bubble furiously; steam rises vertically into the hazy Mumbai sky deflected briefly by a simple canvas awning a meter above the maestro’s head

He stares impassively ahead neither following the trajectory of the onions, the plume of steam or the hungry punters facing him through the empty glass food cabinet

For his expectant customers these moments seem like an eternity; hunger warping the perception of time

There’s an hour, less the time to arrive and return and gastric juices create impatience
With full plastic plates and spoons, they sit contentedly curbside at simple woodenbenches and tables with the incessant traffic by their elbows

photography and text by Tim Harris


This entry was published on May 19, 2017 at 6:30 pm. It’s filed under Food, India, Travel and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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