“Mixture of boiled diced potatoes, boiled chickpeas, sliced onions and chilies with grated eggs on top. Many kinds of roasted spice powder are used in its preparation. It is spicy, sour and hot in taste.” Could you recognize the snack? Everybody in Dhaka city already identify the snack before my disclosure. I am talking about Chotpoti, a roadside dish popular in Bangladesh especially among urban people. The snack is very well-liked owing to its availability, low price and ease of preparation. It is mostly sold in roadside stands and in various fast food stores. It can also be prepared at home. Though chotpoti is roadside stands, it is still very popular among people of all ages. It is much consumed on various occasions e.g. Pohela Baisakh, and events e.g. Gaye Holud by the people of Bangladesh.
Best fuchka in town
There are number of fuchka/chotpoti stands in Dhaka, but it is very difficult to identify “the best” one as the test varies from man to man. There are some such kinds of place where thousands of people visits for Fuchka/ chotpoti.
Opposite 7/6 Block D, Lalmatia
A fuchka shop, situated opposite to 7/6 of Block D in Lalmaita. The shop is different from other fuchka cart for its special type. They make their fuchka different from other by adding lime juice as well as zest to their fuchka, resulting in a distinct taste which you don't get in other places. Their chotpoti is wonderful, because they are not stingy at all with the amount of crushed fuchka they put on top of it. You could find always a group of young people standing on the footpath behind the stand enjoying their plate with chat. Their spiciness ranges from mild to ulcer-inducing spicy; it is your duty to ask him what level spiciness you like to take. Spend only 25-30 taka and get a plate of special fuchka.
Beside Kumudini and Café Lebanon, Gulshan Avenue
Are you interested to take fuchka for your family members? No tension, a fuchka shop has an arrangement for you which is not available in other fuchka shop. This shop is stationed besides Kumidini and Café Lebanon in Gulshan Avenue. They will pack the fuchka shells and the fillings separately for you so you can take it home and eat street food in the comfort of your living room with your family members. This is probably Dhaka's only “Drive-through” fuchka place. Have you ever seen that people enjoying fuchka sitting inside private car? This is the place where you can find such thing. But don’t worry, they do have seating options for those who wish to sit and have a chat. You have to pay only 60 taka for per plate which is quite a reasonable price to pay in Gulshan Avenue! Is not it?
La Café Family, Uttara
Uttara, a newly build portion of Dhaka city where traditional foods are not available. You could find a numbers of fast food shops with sky rocketing price. But some of the shop is trying to come up with traditional items along with junk food. La Café Family is such type which situated beside Family Needs, a popular supermarket in Rabindra Sarani, Uttara. This little café is quite random, as you can find everything from Chinese food to biryani to finally fuchka. Uttara locals love this place, and it's so crowded that you have to wait for a while to get a seat. They start making fuchka at 4pm, and most of the time they run out by 7pm. Expend only Tk 45 for per plate and take a test of true Bengali delicacy.
Most of the city dwellers in Dhaka think that Fuchka and Chotpoti are only available in roadside stand or mobile cart. Fearing the gathering, many people give up visiting roadside fuchka shop. Now, for such kinds of people, some super mall has arranged fuchka/chotpoti in air-conditioned room. Pink City Shopping Mall is one of them. They sell the regular fuchka and chotpoti as well as dahi fuchka. You could locate numbers of fashionable ladies standing around this place replenishing their shopping energy levels before round two. The test of Fuchka and chotpoti at Pink City are always great. As you are taking the test of this most popular item in air-conditioned and clean place so you have to pay high price comparing to other fuchka shop. The price is Tk 75 per plate.
In front of DMC Girls' Hostel
About 25-30 years has already been elapsed with reputation. But “Fuchka Mama” has been operating his fuchka without any weariness. I am talking about a fuchka shop which located in front of the Dhaka Medical College Girls' Hostel. All fuchka makers use more or less same ingredients but something makes different s from each other. Fucnka Mama of DMC girl’s hostel became special for his “tetul-er tok”. Most of the people requested to give an extra cup of such syrup as it is mouth watering. Mainly the students at DMC who flock around Fuchka Mama, but students from other universities also pay him a visit every now and then. He is also popular amongst the patients and relatives of patients who are in the DMC hospital. Nephew of Fuchka Mama learned the techniques of fuchka making and he is all set to run the business for generations. Fuchka Mama also caters for fuchka at holuds. He sells his scrumptious fuchka for 25 taka only.
Rabindra Sarobar, a well-known place for fuchka and chotpoti lovers. Everyday hundreds of people gather there to take the test of fuchka. If you visit that place in evening then you will puzzled to see that hundreds of people craving for fuchka at a time. There are four fuchka shops and all of them do brisk business all round the year. But in various occasion days, it would be very difficult to enter the place as thousands of people gathered there to celebrate those occasions. You have to pay only 35 taka to enjoy a plate of lip smacking fuchka or chotpoty.
National Parliament Area
You like fuchka but you could not go there as most of the fuchka shop in Dhaka situated in congested place? No tension, now there has a place for you. Do you know National parliament of Bangladesh? Go there and you will find 5-6 mobile fuchka/ chotpoti shops. They have seating arrangement in open space. You could visit there with your family. No gathering, no bad odor, no security crisis, but a wanderful place for fuchka lover. The fuchka shop remains open from 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm.