With most of Delhi’s chattering classes making their way to the cooler climes of Europe these days, Mukta Khetan is one busy lady. She is one of the few members of the Marwari community in the city to cater to the culinary needs of her tribe. So well-known are her samosa potlis, chivda and kalmi vadas that few Marwari families set off for their summer sojourn without several kilograms of Mukta’s snacks.
Mukta’s customer list is like a Who’s Who of the capital. Classical musicians, industrialists, celebrities – they all plan parties around her food: her maharaj is from Varanasi and his ker sangri is a treat. You can order it as a vegetable dish or like a pickle. Marwar, for that is the name of Mukta Khetan’s home enterprise, has grown spontaneously in two directions. One is the party catering division, where you bring her your utensils and take pure vegetarian gattas, dals and farsaans away for immediate consumption. The other is the snacks division that has more or less taken on a life of its own ever since Marwar was started. It is easy to see why.
Most Marwari families maintain a certain standard in their homes. And, try as you might, there are few commercial places that conform to that standard. If you buy packages namkeens, it does not have the blend of spice that appeals to the Marwari palate. Go for non-commercial labels, and you’ll land up with practically every shortcut that is possible.
In other words, if you are visiting Lake Lucerne and get a whiff of pure ghee and fragrant spices, it just might be the long arm of Mukta Khetan!