T flavour to business – Apna state, apna swaad డిసెంబర్ 29, 2009Posted by Telangana Utsav in Culture, G.O 610, Hyderabad, Identity, livelihoods, politics, Sankranthi, Telangana.
T flavour to food biz
Sudipta Sengupta | TNN
Hyderabad: Tucked away in a nondescript lane near Indira Park, Pramada’s sweets and snacks shop would have remained known only to a select few, had it not been for the recent ‘T’ movement. With the three-week old agitation instilling among the people of Telangana a renewed sense of pride for the region, this shop selling traditional Telangana food, has found more patrons than it ever expected.
FOOD FACTOR: R Pramada Reddy displays traditional Telangana sweets and snacks at her store
In an effort to abandon everything from ‘Andhra’, scores of Telanganaites now land at Pramada’s in LIC Colony opposite Indira Park each day where everything from the raw material to the people working there are from Telangana. Not surprising then that regulars at the store, where she makes and sells these quintessential Telangana delicacies, say that every bite of Pramada’s snacks make them feel closer home and truly fill in that “missing (Telangana) taste in life” (the tag line of the store). They, however, add that over the last few weeks, this shop has turned into more than just a food stall.
Such talk about Pramada’s ‘silently’ helping the political cause brings its owner, R Pramada Reddy, great joy. However, the 47-year-old from Khammam district admits that she had no such thought when she started off this snack venture nine years ago, which coincided (though not by design) with the launch of TRS. “My friends used to eat at various places and come and tell me how none of it tasted like home-cooked food. They coaxed me to get into this,” says Reddy who has been receiving more customers ever since the ‘T’ agitation picked up in the last three weeks.
“There has been a significant rise in the number of orders I get. A lot more people have also been asking for bigger parcels to send abroad,” she says, adding that the NRI Telangana community has in the last few weeks ordered snacks in kilos.
The patronage is not without reason. She explains how Telangana food can be easily differentiated from Andhra food. “The latter is more about chillies and no masala. Ours has both in equal proportions,” she says. The ‘chakka garelu’ (a snack item) for instance, she explains, tastes very different if bought from an Andhra shop. “We use spring onions and lot of coriander to make it that gives it a distinct taste,” she explains. Even the pickles at her store, customers claim, have a very ‘Telangana flavour’. “It is not as hot as Andhra pickles, and the taste of the masala used is distinct. You will not get the same thing anywhere else,” said B Reddy, a regular at the shop.
Some of her exclusive Telangana products are the ‘sakinalu’ (another spicy snack made especially for Sankranti and weddings) or the ‘madugulu’ (a sweet) or even the ‘keema karijelu’.
“In case of Andhra pickles, the oil is not boiled, in our pickles that is a must. It gives the pickle a very different taste,” said Vijaya Reddy, one of Pramada’s oldest customers.” With the ‘T’ movement gaining ground, Pramada’s patrons are sure that the shop will get only bigger by the day