Go down the jewellers’ lane in Pollachi’s ‘kadai veedhi’ and opposite to Sri Ganapathy Jewel City, is a thallu vandi kadai where Manonmani and her husband Gopalakrishnan start setting up the stall at around 8:00 p.m. and soon the smell of a variety of dosas tickle your nose buds.
“Keera (Spinach) dosa, Ragi (finger millets) dosa and Podi dosa are the crowd favorite,” says Manonmani tossing the Sevai on the tawa, mixing it with egg. A little inquisitive, I ask her to list the types of dosas available in her tiffin stall and she starts: Vaazha Poo (banana flower) dosa, Mushroom dosa, other millet dosas, carrot dosa, tomato dosa, ridge guard dosa, yellow pumpkin dosa, nava dhaniya (nine pulses) dosa and much more.
All types aren’t available on all days. The menu changes every day. The podi (powdered pulses with spices) prepared by Manonmani tastes just so good, spread on the dosa. I was quite full after the egg sevai and podi dosai. I decided to complete my dinner with a Kalakki (egg dish) and it was in the true sense, saving the best for the last.
The dosas taste yum as the ingredients are blended with the batter. Every morning Manonmani makes fresh batter and prepares four varieties of chutneys. Her tiffin stall also sells Chappathi and Parotta (both Wheat and Maida) with gravy and a variety of Aapam. Mani is from Pollachi and she has been running this stall for the past 13 years. All her four tawas sizzle and stay heated as she cooks and serves steaming hot food to the crowd until 11 in the night. Her days are 18 hours-long and she wears a big smile on her face.
She is there on that road, all seven days a week.