Monday, 11 April 2016

Atho Shop, Jehangir Street Corner, Parrys

Atho Shop, Jehangir Street Corner, Parrys:

Disclaimer: I have a Love-Hate relationship with Cabbage. I hate Cabbage Poriyal but Love Cabbage Kootu. So, please do not taste your Atho through my tongue.

A thoke or Atho, as it is lovingly called is the Burmese influence on our Chennai Street Food scenario. Burmese food, as such, is a medley of Chinese, Indian and Thai cuisine. A thoke, is an adaptive version of the Burmese Khow Swey Thoke. The difference between the two is majorly the type of Noodles used. A thoke is made with Egg Noodles and Khow Swey with Wheat Noodles. Mohinga is made out of Rice Vermicelli with Seafood broth. But, the wheel of change hasn't spared Burmese food. So, the ones that you find in the streets of Chennai is an adaption of the Original and has been changed extensively to be adapted by the local palate. Ajinomoto (Monosodium Glutamate) may be added as a taste enhancer.

One can see a mini van, loaded with LOADS of cabbage and onion. And a person, siitting there and shredding cabbage and onions continuously. Then the live action starts. I was not able to find out the reason behind the Orangish Colour of the Atho Noodles. Maybe, it is only to distinguish from the other types of noodles.

Atho: Price INR 50
Atho / A Thoke

My mind deciphers Atho as a Cold Noodle Salad - thick round noodles, mixed with vegetables (cabbage being the one here), with Garlic oil dressing amongst other things. Having said that, the Bumese Atho, at Parrys, is prepared right in front of your eyes (A live counter :P).
Firstly, Cabbage and Onions is added with Salt Water, Tamarind Water, Roasted Chilli Flakes, Fried Gram Flour, Garlic flavoured Oil, a pinch of a white powder was added in between (Salt was added in a liquid form, so I have my own guesses of what this white powder can be). After mixing this through, the Orangish thick Noodles is added along with Crushed Bejo* and Coriander leaves with more Garlic flavoured oil. One final mixing and Atho is ready.

Plantain Stem / Plantain Pith Soup: Free and Unlimited
Plantain Stem Soup
Soupy Atho
If you find Atho bit dry for your liking - a soupy noodles version of Atho, can be made, by adding their Plantain Stem Soup. You do find pieces of Plantain Stem. The soup had flavours of ginger, pepper, coconut from what I could get the hang of.

Burmese Egg Masala: Price INR 10
Burmese Egg Masala

This one really fascinated me. I've had different types of Egg Masala, but this one stands out. A split is made on the Boiled Egg, then the Garlic flavoured oil is infused into the egg, fried onions and coriander are the garnish. My guess, the fried onion too has been added with little bit of spice to enhance it's taste, separately. So, when everything is had together at one go, it's brilliant in taste.

Fried Atho - Egg : Price INR 40
Fried Atho - Egg

Prepared on a hot Tawa. Firstly, loads of Cabbage is heated through along with Salt, Red Chilli Powder, Egg Curry. This mixture is pounded continuously (Similar to Kothu Parotta making style). Then Eggs are added (Almost a crate of Eggs 😲). Mixed through and finished by adding the Orangish thick Noodles and more Egg Curry and lots more pounding of all these ingredients together. Must say, this one's quite laborious and involves lots of muscle work.

Overall Experience: My first vote goes to Atho Noodles. Although, the Plantain Stem Soup was tastewise very good. I don't like soupy noodles, so, that's not for me. The Fried Atho - Egg, didn't suit my taste. Burmese Egg Masala was brilliant.

Atho Shop - Parrys
Atho Shop - Parrys

Atho Shop - Parrys

*Bejo/Paejo/Pejo - is made out of Rice Flour and Chana Dal.

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