Chicken Chap (Kolkata Style)



The other day we were busy in discussing on Chicken Chap over a cup of tea and some lip smacking snacks in the evening. It was raining heavily, the Cable on the TV was showing no signal, so we got a chance to spend some quality time with the Family. I prepared Chicken Chap for lunch that day. So the chitchat taking many tours through the gossip lanes stopped to take a breathe over Chicken Chap. All were in praise of the dish that made me lifted on cloud nine in no time, I decided why not sharing some food stories on this dish. I started first. My memory with Chicken Chap is quite elusive to me. I can dimly recollect the memory of a 9/10 years girl holding her father’s hand, all excited as if some hidden treasure is waiting for me inside Aminia of Park Street – one of the most famous restaurants of that era of Kolkata. Neither I can recollect properly the taste nor the texture. What I can remember the excitement of tasting a dish what is one of my father’s favourite dishes. The New Market area was/is always a treasure trove place for me. Whenever my father used to come to Kolkata, if my school was closed, I never failed to accompany him. And if we were in Kolkata a visit to New Market was a must. I roamed around in amazement holding my father’s hand hours after hours watching the busy cacophonic market life. While wrapping up quickly the works in hand, my father kept on telling me his childhood memories. I can recollect very well my father elucidating his first experience of tasting the Chicken Chap when it was nothing but a fancy dish that could only be found around few areas of Old Kolkata. My father was in his mid-30s, one day on his way back home, he took a detour with his colleagues to Aminia. They ordered for Biriyani and Chicken Chap. Whenever he recollects that memory, I have always seen his face lit up with a joy. My father can’t illuminate the exact taste of Chicken Chap he had tasted so many years back neither I can. But we both know that Chicken Chap has become an integral part of our life from then and it will keep on building up many food stories.

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