The market area dominates the roads surrounding the palace, masking its access location with a flurry of shops just past the historic central mosque, this area is often crowded with much to see and do, a few shops have a first floor view over the busy markets, a nice place to brace yourself before delving in. Obviously I could get a motor rickshaw, they would deposit me directly at the palace gate, but what is the fun of exploring, if I can’t get lost?
Much of the market area looks old, well that is to say the stone buildings lining the main boulevard, are large and old enough to have been built to serve a purpose, judging by the clutter in the laneways behind these large edifices I assume they bordered the old town, with the richest traders getting the finest shop fronts. Besides the many jewellers and pearl merchants, most of the wares available I’ve seen before, very similar stuff to the majority of markets in India, a lot of fairly mundane domestic products, and a little tourist tat. This market was large enough that traders were clustered together by product type, more by planning than luck. At least it was easy to skip the boring sections and to focus on the slightly more compelling products, unless something else caught my eye.
Besides drinking fresh coconut water, straight out of the green skinned fruit, I have had precious little to consume on the streets, I had thought I would consume liberal amounts of tasty food street side in India. Circumstance, cleanliness and variance have played their part in my lack of consumption, with a lot of dish repetition, filthy stalls and surrounds or just plain bad timing. Hyderabad has done me a solid, with a few nice stalls hidden within the markets and an appetite to fill, this time everything fits.
Street side potatoes, yellow pea curry – another variation of the delicious crisp fried potato cake, studded with a little onion, a ladle of yellow pea curry, drizzled with a little sour tamarind and green chutney, sprinkled with some diced red onion. This sure did look a mess, a tasty, tasty mess.
Green chilli pakoras with masala – I had hoped these chillies where stuffed, I had read about a Hyderabadi street food dish of stuffed battered and fried chillies that sounded good, alas no. I had to settle for the delicious plain fried chillies with a rich, sweet and spicy onion and tomato gravy. A few squares of torn newspaper supplied by the vendor served well as napkins for me grease soaked fingertips.