Food on the train ride: Mumbai to New Delhi

Train journeys are always fascinating for those who are old school. Travelling to Delhi by the Duronto 3rd AC from Mumbai Central station (MMCT), I took the bed sheets allotted and settled in my berth. In sometime, the kitchen steward came in asking passengers their preferred meal. We had to provide all our meal choice in advance so that the kitchen team could cook accordingly.

Now, coming back to the menu for breakfast, there was vegetable cutlet or omelette. I went for the second option. Unfortunately, I got the middle berth. Middle berths are so compact that you can’t even sit in it without bending your spine and tilting your head. Nevertheless, the TC came to check the ticket in sometime and verified my seat.

At 7 am, the chaiwallah came with a red thermos with hot water, a cup with milk powder, sugar sachets, a tiny biscuit packet and a tea bag. Breakfast came around 9 am. It was organised in a tray with butter, two bread slices, omelets, mango juice pet bottle, a tissue and a spoon. The omelette wass still hot and yummy with the right mix of onion, coriander and seasoning. The omelette foil pack also had some boiled green peas.

Next came a cup of hot kitchen soup, along with a tray that contained soup sticks, pepper and salt seasoning. At around 1.20 pm, the kitchen steward was back with the lunch tray. The tray this time contained three foil packets and chapati covered in foil roll, a curd packet and pickle.

The vegetable was paneer curry cooked with whole spices and was yummy and the quantity of paneer chunks was good. The dal felt homely and thick with a tadka of cumin. Jeera rice went well with the dal and it was yummy enough to eat with pickle as well. The curd in the end finished the meal on a soothing note.

Post 2 pm, the kitchen steward came back and gave vanilla ice cream. The kitchen steward came again with a tray of fennel. I said thank you and passed out to sleep. The food was good and the kitchen steward was courteous and collected the food tray in time. The IRCTC website might be a pain, but the food was good.

Text & Photography – Vijaya Nair

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