Eating hot food is one thing, however munching on a snack that has virtually been set on fire? That's a completely different experince altogether.
A unique paan stall in the capital of India has recently gone viral on social media for its game-changing preparation, that keeps the standard chew aflame as it touches the customer’s mouth. The food stall, owned by Pradhuman Shukla’s family, has been selling paan in Delhi, India for twenty years, according to Barcroft.
Traditionally, paan is a prepared chew, composed of betel leaf and filled with areca nut and sometimes tobacco. It is munched, then swallowed or spat out. However, 31-year-old Pradhuman, created a fiery twist on the standard Indian chew by lighting them on fire, before being stuffed into the customers’ mouths. He also modified the ingredients a little by adding sweet masala, with a bit of ice, and a concentrated squash drink known as Rooh Afza.
Consuming/chewing paan is said to have medicinal effects on many ailments, including colds, flu, and sore throats. According to the creative stall owner, that was his original inspiration:
“I once had a client who used to come here daily. He regularly had a sore throat and would tell me: ‘Make me paan. I have mouth ulcers.’ I'd make him paan daily and each time he would say: ‘I didn’t cure’ - Pradhuman narrated.
Then sooner or later a man who used to work here burnt the paan and gave the paan to the client. That day he said, ‘Yes, my ulcers have cured. Two men were standing close to him and when they saw the fire paan they said: ‘What is this? This can be a brandnew idea. Make one for us too.
While consuming the fire paan seems very risky, the stall owner claims the fire really provides a cool sensation once placed inside the mouth:
We understand it’s quite risky, however people are enjoying it. I started with only one paan. However, currently we make around one hundred daily.
He acknowledged that some customers get frightened at first, however, he guarantees that nobody has complained of getting hurt up to now:
I know how it works. I actually have tried it before. It’s safe and won’t cause injury to anyone. Some folks might not find it tasty, however nobody has been hurt with it.