Whenever you’re out having some good ol’ Mughlai, the starters are always on the heavier side. However, there’s the starter of the starters and the best friend of any meal is the Papad.
Known across India as Papad, papar, papadam, poppadom – it’s known by different names around the country, but this delicious crunchy item has made its place in every household. It has been a part of meals in many parts of the country, while just an appetizer in some others.
Papad is an inseparable part of the Indian cuisine since forever. The boom in the business of papad happened mostly over the past couple centuries or so. This crunchy treat has a fascinating history, with an interesting link to women’s empowerment in the country.
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Papads are mostly thin, super crisp round food item is made from varying ingredients like moong, black gram flour, chick peas, rice, and even tapioca which we call sabudana locally. Methods of cooking also vary –some fry their papads, others dry roast them, with and lately there has also been a ritual of microwave them. Papad is mostly eaten plain but also sometimes with chutneys or dips. But when topped with vegetables and spices, the masala papad is one of the most addictive things you can have.
There is of course, the most famour brand of Lijjat papad that was launched for women empowerment – which works successfully even in today’s time. Shri Mahila Udyog Lijjat Papad started with a modest loan of Rs 80, the cooperative now has annual sales exceeding Rs 301 crore (Rs 3.1 billion). What's more stunning than its stupendous success is its striking simplicity. And perhaps that is the most interesting lesson managers can pick up from Shri Mahila Griha Udyog Lijjat Papad.
Lijjat Papad has branches all over the country. This cooperative organisation was started by seven women on a terrace of a building in Girgaum in Mumbai, which now has thousand of women employed who remain financially sustained, contributing to worth of millions of exports.
This Bhartiya tortilla comes in various varieties like Khichiya papad, Moong dal papad, Carrot and potato papad, Udad papad, rice papad, black pepper papad and the most famous Sindhi papad. From Kashmir to Kanyakumari, and Gujarat to Bengal, Papad is one thing that unifies the country.