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Surat Winters are simply incomplete without the yummy and healthy Surti Ponk

The terms Surat and foodies are synonymous with each other. You will rarely come across a Surti who is not a foodie. No wonder Surat boasts of a number of specialities. Interestingly, a lot of items are preparedly for particular seasons. For instance Khajas are prepared specially in the rainy season. Similarly Surti winters are simply incomplete without the Surti Ponk. It will not be an overstatement if we go on to say that Surti Ponk is considered as the lifeline of Surat as this special food item is a speciality of Surat City and only found here.


This is how Surti Ponk looks like

In case you are pondering about it’s different sounding name, here are the details. Ponk is actually the name for green immature sorghum (jowar) grains. Ponk is delivered to Surat from areas around Hazira and other areas near Surat. But they are only sold at Surat. Sorghum seed-head stalks are roasted under charcoal and the grains are beaten out from their soft shelling. Surti Ponk has a very attractive  green colour which lures you towards it. Ponk is very soft and sweet in taste and people of every age enjoy it. Ponk should be consumed within the time period of 24 hours although it can be kept for about one and half a day if the temperatures are not too high.

Ponk is normally available from the month of October end till Februar, its peak season being December and January. Ponk is  prepared on the banks of Tapi river bypeople who have an expertise at making this unique dish. The love for ponk is not only limited to Surtis, but people from all over come looking for Ponk and enjoy its tatse. Ponk is also exported.

Surti Ponk Bhel

So much is the love of Ponk that people do not hesitate to buy it even though it is expensive. Ponk costs Rs 500 \kg .Yet Ponk stalls are always packed by food lovers. Ponk is normally enjoyed along with a variety of tasty sevs. Sevs here are available in a wide variety of flavours such as lemon and pepper, palak with garlic and so on. Sev are thin, long and very crispy and make a perfect combination with ponk.

 Ponks are now available in a great  variety such as ponkwada, ponk samosa and ponk pattice. If you love spicy food, it’s just perfect for you as it is served with green chutney. Its a total paisa vasool dish.
During winters, you will definitely find people sitting with their  families and friends on both sides of roads and on foothpaths enjoying their ponk party. Ponk cannot be passed off as junk food as it is is rich in antioxidants. Ponk contains majority of nutrients as the plant is very high in fibre as well as iron and protien.

About Nishi Lakhani