Beaches and Taste Buds #AtoZChallenge


Beaches in India are famous for the yummy snacks that are sold on the shores. Apart from building sand castles, paddling in the waves and just soaking in the setting sun at the horizon, a visit to any beach must include savoring the local snack that is sold there. So whether it is the “Pav Bhaji” (A spicy vegetable curry that is served with a soft bread roll called Pav) of Chowpatty beach in Mumbai, or the Jhal Muri (puffed rice with spices, vegetables and raw mustard oil) from Puri beach in Orissa, the flavors are so very distinct.

One such snack I shall always savor is the humble “Sundal” on the beach.  Sundal is a preparation made with dried white peas, topped with oodles of tangy raw mango and sliced coconut.

It is a specialty of Marina Beach in Chennai and is popularly called Thenga Manga Pattani Sundal (Mixture of Coconut, Mango, and Dry Peas).

Visit any beach in Chennai and you could spot vendors walking on the sand selling Sundal. They carry their prepared Sundal in iconic grey aluminum tins and serve them to you in pieces of paper that have been shaped into a cone, to hold a ladle full of Sundal. For the price of Rs. 10/- one such cone could be yours. And trust me it will leave you asking for more.

For those who are health conscious, this is a perfect snack. It doesn’t pile on that extra bit of flab nor do they add on to your bad cholesterol. The dried peas are a great source of protein. The finely chopped green chillies and the combination of the tanginess is a sure delight to those taste buds. Even on a hot day in Chennai, Sundal on the beach would not leave you feeling dehydrated..

All you need to do is let the cool breeze of the sea hit you, lap up the frothy waves around your feet and savor a cone of Sundal. The feeling is purely blissful.

So which one is your favorite snack on the beach?

This is a part of my journey exploring 26 lesser known shades of a country called India, with the #AtoZChallenge 2016!!!

  1. Talking of beaches, Calicut beach offers you mouth- watering pickled mangoes, to pineapples to carrots and beetroots and what not! I am already home sick.Sigh!!!

  2. Indian beaches are filled with orthodox people enjoying the breeze; hanging out with families and friends and of course savoring tasty refreshments. These snacks actually fall under the category of street food. Popularity of Indian street food reached its peak that it expanded its horizons to other areas including beaches. Thus street food gained immediate attraction among beach-goers and became an integral part of beaches.

  3. yum! I desperately need Sundal now! I have eaten it on the Marina. I have also eaten that slice of raw mango cut and sprinkled with salt and chilli that they sell at the same place!!

    Shubhangi @ The Little Princess

  4. We get chana chaat in Mumbai. That black gram variety with tomato, onion, coriander, and generous doses of chaat masala 😀
    Sundal sounds interesting too. I do hope I get a chance to visit Chennai. I’ll surely taste this treat 🙂

  5. Your post left me salivating … thenga manga pattani sundal at the santhome beach are such fond childhood memories for me.
    As i grew up they were replaced by the bhutta roasted over charcoal smothered with fresh lemon, salt and chilli powder in mumbai. It used to be a delight at Nariman point over looking the sunset. Sadly the hawkers have all been evacuated citing security reasons Pchhh .

    BTW we have something similar about our themes and that is what made me hop on to your blog post. …. will be back for more.

    Keep going.

  6. Yum drool slurrrrp , what a post oh what a post . I have eaten sundal, chana jor garam, puffed rice snacks like jhaal muri and others and love all of them, eaten on the beach they acquire yet other dimensions of enjoyment. Lovely post 🙂

  7. Sundal looks and sounds very delicious. We don’t live very close to a beach, so I can’t say that I have a favorite beach snack . . . I imagine a picnic of any kind would be wonderful on a beach.

  8. Very nicely put. Truly each beach has its own characteristic and trademark food item. I have had beach sundal long ago in Chennai and it was truly refreshing though. Another beach food which I enjoyed (in Mumbai) was the raw mango with masala.

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