It does not matter how expensive a scotch you are drinking, or how many beers you chug-if you do not have great food to go along with your booze, it is pretty much a miserable experience. Whether it is as cheap as a packet of chips for 10 rupees or as expensive as a platter of Afghani chicken from Moti Mahal, these are 15 essential Chakhnas that all Indian men love with their drinks.
1. Tandoori Chicken
Without a doubt, the national Indian chakna has got to be Tandoori chicken - with its roasted goodness, crispy onion rings and mint chutney. Then there are the other kinds of roasted chicken - Afghani Chicken, Achaari Chicken and what not.
2. KFC Bucket
For those with a crispier palate, a good drinking session is incomplete without KFC's very own bucket. As long as we do not get the secret recipe of their crazy crispy chicken, it is Colonel zindabaad.
3. Masala Papad
Not all Chakhnas are strictly non-vegetarian, for instance - the extremely cheap and amazingly scrumptious masala papad. Loaded with chopped nuts, tomatoes, onions and coriander - it makes for a great accompaniment with whatever you may be drinking.
4. Cheese Balls
Another yummy snack that is easy on the pockets as well as readily available - cheese puffs! Made by a variety of brands, cheese puffs or cheese balls go great with some chilled beer.
Boil them, roast them, spice them - these crunchy little things are as versatile as your mood desires. From street vendors to the local kirana store, they're everywhere.
6. Cashew Nuts
Nuts as a rule always make for great Chakhnas, but the only nuts that equal peanuts in flavor are cashew nuts. Fried, roasted or mixed with other spices - they are a favorite with Indian drinking scenes.
7. Fish Fry
It's not just an East/coast thing - fish fry is as great as fried chicken, and make for some amazing chakna with your peg of whiskey.
8. Fish Fingers
Another great chakna made from fish, fish fingers is this author's personal favorite. Crispy on the outside, tender on the inside - with loads of mayonnaise dip to swathe it in, fish fingers totally make it to this list.
9. Potato Chips
This is so pocket-friendly that even broke hostel students sneaking in a quarter can afford to feast on them. And the varieties in brands and flavors today are a far cry from 20 years ago, when all you had was Uncle Chipps.
10. Chana Chur
Another easy fuss-free yummy chakna to buy from a street vendor on your way back home? Hello, chana chur! Something about this just makes rainy evenings alright - that and a glass of your favorite booze.
11. Chicken Kebabs
Amazingly flavored, melt-in-your-mouth tasty - chicken kebabs are another absolute favorite of Indians when it comes to snacking during happy hours.
12. Paneer Tikka
Vegetarians are also spoilt for choice when it comes to Chakhnas. And a good platter of paneer tikkas is so good, that even hardened non-vegetarians cannot resist it.
13. Soya Chaap
Haters gonna hate, but vegetarians know that soya chaap totally makes up for the hullabaloo non-vegetarians make about their chicken and mutton. Delish!
It does not matter which part of India you come from - bhujia is a language everyone understands when it comes to snacks with drinks. It has been so since years - and it will be so for years to come.
15. Cold Cuts
On a good day, when the wallet is full and the mood is jubilant - Indians love to experiment, and they do so with store-bought sausages, salamis and what have you. Cold cuts are quickly becoming a staple chakna in Indian households, and for good reason!
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