A Question of a ‘Naan’
Islamabad is truly a city with a thousand faces. Islamabad has a population that is characterised by ethnic identities from the far north to the southern most point of the countryand each of these people has brought some part of their own cultures with them and as time has gone by, that particular tradition has become identifiable with Islamabad’s life style.
One of these traditions that has grown largely due to the population that was initially based in NWFP, specifically Peshawar City where even today, people rely mostly on the ‘tandoor’ to provide their daily intake of the ‘roti’, a flat leavened form of bread made from wholewheat flour. Islamabad has hundreds of small and large tandoors located in small markets and in nooks and cranies around the city which provide many forms of fresh, warm bread hot from the oven to residents of the posh areas to the laborers employed around the city. Some of these tandoors are attached to small hotels that also serve the not so well off when it’s time for an afternoon or evening meal.
As time has gone by, tandoors have evolved the conventional ‘roti’ into many varied types, to suit different occasions and tastes. For example, a ‘roghni naan’ or a ‘paratha’ usually kneaded with ghee and/or milk usually signifies a special occasion; guests or lunch or even a simple leasurely meal on a holiday. During a convential week, it is the common ‘naan’ that usually graces the table. If you don’t like what you have to eat at home, you can order a mince meat or vegetable naan that will fill your tank up quite well.
Be it a crisp, clear day or an evening, there is nothing more comforting than the warm scents of the naan and rotis wafting from the tandoor at the corner. It is guaranteed to make anyone feel hungry.