Just a month back I had been to the Kadalekai Parishe (groundnut fair). Little did I know that the city also celebrates a fair dedicated to Kadalekai’s lesser known cousin Avarekai (flat beans). I read about the Avarekai Mela in the newspapers and wanted to check it out. The Avarekai Mela is not as big an affair as the Kadalekai Parishe but it definitely showcases more delectable food. Over here you can savour out-of-the-world Karnataka cuisine. There is so much food on offer that you will be spoilt for choice. Most of the preparations have Avarekai as one of the ingredients. I reached Sri Vasavi Condiments at Sajjan Rao Circle, the venue of the fair, at around 3pm. There was a moderate crowd then. After going through the large menu card put up by the organisers, it took me some time to decide what to eat. I finally decided on the Khalli Dosa. A couple of people had also ordered this dosa. I watched with interest as the cook spread out the batter with artistic ease. In no time, the dosas were ready. There were two on a platter with Avarekai sambar as the accompaniment. The soft and fluffy dosas just melted in my mouth. I was happy with my choice.
All the ready-to-eat foods were available indoors; the cooking was being done outdoors at the many stalls. The fair also had vendors and farmers selling Avarekai, Kadalekai and more. After hanging around the place for some time, I decided to have a go at something else. I have heard so much about Ragi Mudde but never got to taste it. Ragi Mudde, the wonder food of Karnataka is nutritious, wholesome, simple to make and very economic and so finds a special place in the dinner plates of many Kannadigas. True to their reputation, the Ragi Muddes on my plate were really very filling! As the afternoon wore on, there were more people thronging the place. Many seemed to be from the vicinity. I wondered how the atmosphere would be like late in the evening what with such mouth-watering grub around. The Avarekai Mela is a great event to soak into. A foodie’s paradise! I would definitely be back next year to binge again on these one-of-a-kind treats! The fair is on till 7 January.