Ooty Varkey

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Adversities always provide opportunities for introspection. I believe in these words because adversities often happen at my place in the name of HARTHAL.
This word is quite interesting,this gives a smile on the face for half a dozen people and sometime lost hope for people when they get stuck in midway. I belong to the second half category ,where this sudden strike completely screwed up my day. But making it sober or happy is all one creation. I was just hanging around in the sitting room with no idea what to do for the rest of the day,suddenly my mom showered her love to me by offering a hot cup of chaiii and bowl full of yummy ghee varkheyyy!!!! ..Thats the moment of happiness. Didn’t think twice ,i grabbed it.

If you are eating varkey you should have with hot chaiii. That adds a special taste for it.Instead of ladoos ,lots of varkhey started bursting at my heart.

I started thinking what will be the magical taste of this, from the moment it has taken out from hot pan if the taste of varkey is this much with hot chaii..I have heard about a bakery which makes hot varkey which is in neighborhood village called Devala. Everyone should experience the taste of it. Its simply marvelous.

Mind started rolling and i decided to go there moreover that place doesn’t have strikes also. So kicked off my scooter which has having a peaceful day from my busy schedules and started the journey to Devala.. to the house of ghee varkey 🙂 , to the Little Cherrapunji of SOUTH.

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Devala is a small town in the Nilgiris district of Tamil Nadu. It is situated at about 28 km from from Thaloor (a village in kerala Tamil Nadu border) on the Sulthan bathery – Ooty road. Devala lies in between two national parks, Mudumalai National park in Tamilnadu and New Amarambalam Wildlife Sanctuary in Kerala. This place is also known as the little Cherrapunji of the South India because of the amount of rain it receives from the Arabian sea.

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Here the tea is grown at the elevation of around 1,000 meters to 2,500 meters. The major teas produced on the Nilgiri hills are the Oolong and black tea. The favorable climatic conditions, makes Nilgiri a truly unique tea plantation land.

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I must confess I might have a strong tea addiction, and this teas hop have the best strong tea ever!! They use organic  milk to make teas which for me is a big deal since I don’t really like packet milk!!

Annnd they have the real nilgiri tea dust which I prefer to add in my tea..!!! You gotta check them out when you are passing through this way!!

Oh, and did I say they are super nice and friendly?! Yeahhhhhh!!!!!

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Devala has several buildings designed in the British style, particularly the churches, many of which were designed by British architectures. You can see many road junction with English names like the places in England.

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After the early 1820s, the hills were developed rapidly under the British Raj, because most of the land was already privately owned by British citizens. It was a popular summer and weekend getaway for the British during the colonial days.

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Beginning in 1819, the British colonial administration developed the hills rapidly and peaceably, for use as coffee and tea plantations, and summer residences. I strongly recommend to travel to Ooty via Devala as the road condition is very good and the traffic is also very less.

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360 degree view of the nature on a two wheeler…

It was a mystical, mythical peace, with the wind … Riding through that was nothing short of spiritual, almost divine to me.

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I finally found a place were ooty varkey is made in a traditional way. Ingredient for ooty varkey is  all purpose flour, ghee, vanaspathi, cooking oil, sugar and salt.

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Setting up the fire….

Now its time to build the fire by using small pieces of wood and coconut outer shells.

If you have never closely encountered with firing brick wood oven here you have a close up shots of what it looks like inside. Household red brick were used to build this wood fire oven.

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The fire behaves just the way as would any fire on the open space. Except flames are naturally bending as their tongues lick the low ceiling of the chamber. Once the fire reached some  larger pieces of firewood were added to the small fire. From the start up point till now passed about 30 minutes. Now the activity slows down a bit as larger pieces take longer time to burn.

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Its baking time….

The rounded dough has been ready to bake, This part of the bake usually takes about 30 to 45 minutes, but will depend on the oven conditions and how dark you like your varkey to be. The intense heat will make the dough rise again due to moisture and steam adding their leavening power to the dough.

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And there you have it…

Look at the delicious crispy ooty varkey. I was not able to control myself to grab one of these. I came here all the way to taste the wonderful and perfectly oven baked yummy hot varkeys. Tasting the hot varkey right from the oven was an amazing experience that i will never forget. Now i can go back home with a heart full of memories and satisfaction.

There are many places to explore in Devala, and i am sure i will come here again to explore the unseen places.

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