"Indian street food" is one of those phrases that strike terror in the hearts of travellers and tourists but what nobody seems to realise is that this is the food of approximately 1.2 billion workers everyday! With fast food chains claiming the title of "authentic Indian" taking over the globalised streets of London, Angus Denoon and his pop-up chaat cart, Jhalmuri Express, aims to invoke the traditional Bengali charm of Kolkata street food.
Pop Up Brixton was the perfect place for a Bollywood themed movie night. Fairy lights and embroidered sarees traipsed the container walls and colourful umbrellas adorned with marigold hung from the ceiling. If anything captured the flamboyance of a traditional Bengali get-together, it was this! Guests were welcomed with cones of spicy jhalmuri: puffed rice seasoned with onion, pomegranate, mustard oil, tamarind sauce and a host of other toppings. Inside the pop up cinema, even more chaat stands were available: gugni, puchka and tonic galore! The night was a little chilly by 11 p.m so I opted for a ginger tea, served in little glass cuttings.
Before screening Slumdog Millionaire (can you believe I'd never watched it before?!) Angus shared a twenty minute documentary about his street food revolution and how the streets of Kolkata had inspired him to share his passion for chaat in the heart of London.