Bradford Mela

I don’t live in a big city like London, Paris or New York, I live in Bradford, a northern city in West Yorkshire in England. No matter how hard it tries it just isn’t a great city for a self-declared foodie. Bradford does one thing well, actually does it great, it’s a great place for Indian Food.Bradford has a very diverse population but with an especially dense Indian population. I have therefore eaten my fair share of curries in my life and the best I’ve had have been here in my hometown. For almost as long as I’ve been alive Bradford has held a Mela (from the Sanskrit word for meet), an event that celebrates the music food and culture of the Indian Sub-continent. After 21 years I finally visited and on one of the hottest days of the year so far. It’s a pretty big festival, numerous stages for music, dancing, theatre and of course food.

Oddly at an event celebrating Indian culture there were food stalls selling stuff like pizza and burgers, which I ignored heading straight for what I wanted – curry. We went for  Chicken Tikka, a dry spiced chicken dish, and a serving of baji normally just spiced deep fried onion but this had potato as well) and naan bread. Neither dishes were too spicy, I could have had it stronger actually, but both were really tasty.

I was hoping to try some Indian sweets, which I love, but I didn’t see any. We did come across something ive never seen before though, called Jaleebi a really sweet candy like treat. Its made of deep fried flour that’s soaked in syrup and coloured with saffron. It’s a nice chewy texture with a crisp sugary shell but all I really tasted was sugar. I love events like this they are a great way to spend a day and Bradford does them well. My hometown may not be the best city for a foody but it does damn good indian food and with so many indian restaurants to try ill be eating it for a long time. 

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2 responses to “Bradford Mela

  1. As a fellow Northener (although now living in the Midlands) I know what you mean about Bradford, I grew up midday between Bradford and Leeds and apart from the Indian food in Bradford, Leeds always had the upper hand in the gourmet stakes.

    Birmingham is meant to be fabulous for its curries but it doesn’t live up to Bradford – now you’ve got me planning a trip back ‘home’.

  2. Have you been to the Karachi in Bradford… You can’t beat it!

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