Journey Through India: Kolkata | CNBC International

Journey Through India: Kolkata | CNBC International

Come on. Chop some
coriander for me. No, onions will come later
when you’re more professional. I’m quite good at onions. I’m sure you are… Hi. I’m Tom. I’m traveling through one of the most colorful
and vibrant countries in the world, and with the help of local knowledge, I’ll be trying
to find out what makes this place so special. Join me on a journey through India. Kolkata, still commonly referred to as Calcutta,
is the capital of the eastern state of West Bengal. While it’s now known for its gentle pace
of life, back in the eighteenth century the city was British India’s most important trading
post and the showpiece of their colonial power. Home to prominent intellectuals, Kolkata is regarded
as the artistic and cultural capital of India. Kolkata used to be the capital of India at
the beginning of the twentieth century, when it was under British rule. Victoria Memorial was built around that time
and really illustrates that colonial period. As well as its history, this city
is famous for its food. Bengali cuisine has evolved over time, but Kolkata
still remains the ideal place to experience it. On this journey I’ve been really keen to
try some home-cooked Indian food, and what better place to do
that than in West Bengal? Fortunately enough, a lady who has lived in this city, has
agreed to let me in her home and even cook for me. Hi. Iti? Hello Tom. Welcome, welcome.
Come in please. Thank you very much. Iti Misra is a retired British Airways executive,
but has built a second career as a chef. As well as appearing on a number of Indian
cooking shows, she hosts lunches in her home so that visitors to the city can experience a taste of
Bengali cuisine and get a glimpse into local life. You need an apron? I’m sorry.
I don’t have an apron. You don’t have an apron for me, and you’ve
got ‘queen of the kitchen’ on yours? Then I’m the queen of
the kitchen, aren’t I? I should probably be
jester of the kitchen. Yes, you’re my commie for today. Pay attention. Okay this is roasted mung beans,
which we call daal. It’s normally eaten as a first
course with rice. You know most of the spices we use
are really not for taste. They’re more for digestion. Really? Yes, they all serve medicinal purpose. And then we will put in a little bit of
the chopped tomatoes. Okay. More for color than for taste. There we go. A lot of Indians are vegetarian. This is where they get their protein. Bowl of daal, maybe a couple of
chapatis or a bowl of rice. And that’s a meal in itself. There’s a nice color to it as well. So how long have you been in Kolkata for? I have lived in Kolkata all
my life, I’m a Kolkata girl. I went to school here, college,
married, brought up my children. Everything in this city, I love this city. I wouldn’t go anywhere else. Now we will do a fish dish
which will be steamed. Is this quite a traditional dish to Kolkata? This is very typical of Bengal. Bengalis are great fish eaters. So what I’m going to do is I’m going to
marinade the fish with some mustard paste. And then I’m going to ask you to wrap
these in the banana leaves. Okay. It all looks so pretty. Pretty right? Now we fold it, this way.
And then here and then here. So you can get ready for Christmas now. Neatly please. Neatly! Fold one over there. There we go. You’re a professional. You’ll have
me out of a job now. Next dish we’re going to do
is eggplant, in yogurt. Kolkata, how has it changed over your lifetime? In some ways, nothing has changed. We’re still very colonial in our outlook.
Kolkata used to be the heart of India. People came to Kolkata to seek their fortune,
but it’s considered the backwater now by a lot of large multinational companies. But still
we have a lot of people who come here for the music, for the art,
for the performing arts. Now we have our prawns. Amazing, look at those tails. They’re sort of dark blue, purple
and yellow. Beautiful, aren’t they? These are freshwater, and we keep the head
because that’s where all the taste is. Now we’re just going to leave it a little
to simmer, and by that time when it’s cooked, we will add coconut milk. Maybe put a
couple of red chilis for drama. Otherwise, how will you know
that you’re eating Indian food? Potatoes in? Yes please. Not with the water! Too much water! There was a doubting Thomas in the scriptures,
and there is a Thomas the faint hearted here. I’m going to place it in the order in
which it is to be eaten. Right prawns.
I’m excited for these. And this, the heart of the banana.
Have you ever eaten it before? No. Have you ever seen it cooked before? No. It’s so good. Right, let’s try some of the fish. That is delicious, and the mustard
is really, really good. I also just ate a bit of chili on the fish. You knew where the chili was. I know, I wanted to try it
and see how brave I was. Alright okay, it’s good for you. I don’t think I’ll get anything like this
back home, that’s for sure. So what do you do in the evenings in Kolkata? I have a lot of fun. I have friends. We go
out dining or we meet at our club. Would you like to join me for a
drink in the evening? Yeah if that’s ok? Yes it’s very nice, very colonial. Back in the days of the Raj, it was built. I was beginning to miss you already. You can’t make me laugh
when I’m about to eat. Traveling from the center of Kolkata, I’m
heading north to the oldest part of the city. Northern Kolkata feels like it’s
in a bit of a time warp. You’ve got these old buildings that line
both sides of the street and even the taxis look like they’re from the 1960s. This area of the city is home to the busy
Kumartuli clay making quarter. It’s also where you’ll find the stately
mansions of famous Kolkatans, such as India’s greatest modern
poet Rabindranath Tagore. Chai? One of the things you’ll notice when you
come to Kolkata is the humidity. It is stifling. So you leave your home, leave the safety of
air conditioning and you are sweltering. So it’s important to keep drinking. As the day draws to a close, I’m heading
to the river that runs right through the city. I’ve been told the best place to see the
sunset in Kolkata is on Hooghly River. You can hire one of these boats to get
yourself right out onto the water. At roughly 160 miles long, the Hooghly River
provides the city with water and serves as a major transport system for
both people and cargo. It was through this river that the
East India Company sailed into Bengal and established their trade settlement. Being out on the water, you get a great
understanding of where things lie in the city. You’ve got the old Howrah Bridge built in
the Second World War and the Vidyasagar Setu which was built in 1992 as the city has expanded. It’s absolutely beautiful out on the water,
I mean the views are incredible. It’s also got a really nice breeze just
in case you’re overheating. It gets dark early in Kolkata because we’re
in West Bengal, which is in the eastern part of India, and I’ve got a date with Iti
which I better not be late for. So this is the Saturday Club where Iti and
I are ready to have our date, and look at this badminton court with all these huge high
ceilings and the railings going around. It’s got a really colonial vibe to it. Hi Iti. Nice to see you. Good to see you again. Thank you for having us here. The Saturday Club was founded by British officers
of the Calcutta Light Horse Regiment in 1875 and moved into its current premises at the
beginning of the twentieth century. And places like this, you know these private
member clubs that have been built during the colonial period, do you think they will
last for generations to come? So it’s quite an aspirational thing, you know, ‘I’m a member of such and such a club,’
which means I have a place in society. In fact, it’s one of the few clubs where
women are also on the committee, which was nice because clubs were supposed
to be a gentleman’s thing. It was where they met to get away from
their wives but not anymore. They can’t get away from them. No, they followed them here. Wow. Thank you very much. It’s been lovely spending time with you. Thank you very much Iti, for cooking for me
and telling me all about Kolkata. I enjoyed it so much. Cheers. Seeing Kolkata through Iti’s eyes has helped
me understand how closely tied this city is to its colonial past. Whether it’s the grand private
members clubs or the heritage buildings, reminders of its history can
be found on every corner. But it’s also the challenge facing this
unique and friendly metropolis, to combine the traditional and modern in order to help
the gateway to eastern India retain its position as one of the country’s most influential cities. Hi guys. Thanks for joining us on
our journey through India. If you want to see our previous
stop in Bangalore, then click here. And our next stop, which will be in Delhi,
click here and do let us know what your favorite travel destinations are by commenting below
the video and remember don’t forget to subscribe.

100 thoughts on “Journey Through India: Kolkata | CNBC International

  1. This is not CNBC Standard. I quite do not like the content. Poor city background research. Poor host and very very on the top coverage. This is not how you showcase a brief about a city.

    I doubt why how a CNBC brand is buying into this kinda sub-standard content. The host is very pale and unlikable.

    Please make some well researched, good quality content.

  2. Kolkata have more and more beautiful places not showed in the video..๐Ÿ˜ซ๐Ÿ˜ซ๐Ÿ˜ซ..why western media not show this ๐Ÿ˜ ๐Ÿ˜ ๐Ÿ˜ 

  3. Peoples, who see the Kolkata in his own eyes , they called it city of joy
    And peoples who, never yet visit the city, see the Kolkata by bjp paid national media, they called the city of Bangladesh immigrants

  4. Kolkata is the one of the worst place in the whole entire world and kolkata is also the worst city in the whole entire country .Kolkata ki maa ka chut kolkata ki maa ka bhosda.

  5. There is much more than this, u must during the Durga puja and u had to visit eco park (15 mins from the airport)

  6. State government has exploited Kolkata for their internal pleasure and has ruined this city. None of the youths from this city living abroad wants to return to this city.

  7. I don't know why on earth did the woman who has stayed in the city for so long said that the city has not changed…it has changed miles in last 6-7 years….Plzz stop showing poor parts of indian cities in your videos…and whr the hell is New Town , Salt Lake , New market , south city…haters name me your cities I will bring out the negatives from there too… remember no city on the earth can be perfect…so just shut your shitty mouths and respect each and every cities of India…

  8. One side always notice by me that whenever any sky line or good thing come in front of camra they move quickly why we start to so you slam USA then you complain

  9. You should visit south east Kolkata like Anandapur , kasba ,CIT more , ballygunge . Also you should visit Tangra ( the biggest China town in India) , park Street etc etc .

  10. I don't understand the negetivity in the comments section…Calcutta is a beautiful city with a rich heritage which fell into decay after independence…But it is showing green shoots and I believe the situation is going to turn around…People commenting about Bangladeshis and the current government are just mischief makers who don't get enough attention.

  11. I have food fest tickets in Kolkata nicco park organised by iihm. Anyone interested please let me know. Theyโ€™re 500 per head. And itโ€™s unlimited food from all over the world. Itโ€™s on Saturday 2nd March! Hurry up guys donโ€™t miss the one

  12. Leave the man made cities of India go and visit what nature has given to India, thatโ€™s incredibly incredible.

  13. But Indiaโ€™s air quality is so bad….

  14. In my country even in slums they build their own toilet it is necessity for every house it is not the government responsibility

  15. Idk why but most of the westerners who ever came India tried finding slums sooo hard. Yeah you will find few of them even in america uk France Germany tooo. It doesn't mean you will only show slums seeing this people will get more stereotype. I've been to Kolkata thrice it has its mordern side and also the old side just like any other state of India. People are sweet but sadly development has stopped there

  16. My city kolkata๐Ÿ˜„๐Ÿ˜„๐Ÿ˜„๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜
    Any more people from Kolkata?

  17. Kolkata is three type north kolkata have many traditional begali houses and beautiful parks and street , hand pulling rixa …. Central kolkata is under development…. Have many colonies and political historys and Chinese communitys…. And south kalkata is developed area a green city…. But kolkata's main beauty is Durga puja….. In this puja time kolkata look like a newly birde….

  18. I love Kolkata for variety of foods which I have not seen anywhere , food is an art here , many indian cities famous for many foods but they are centred to particular characteristics, while Kolkata is completely different, even Punjabi , Rajasthani, Lucknow Nawabi foods are so nice there, Bengali masala touch is totally fabulous..
    1) variety of sweet some are dry some are moist some are completely juicy
    2) so much variety of fish , mutton, chicken itmes smokey, dum, baked, simple bong style , mughlai style, english , European…
    3) green vegetables cabbage, , cauliflower, banana flower, Loki , lentiles , Taro root , pumkin ,Arbi leafs means endless , made with shrimp , prawns, fish head , fish curry with brinjal , cauliflower, & potatoes or carrots so much so light & healthy food
    4) hundreds pure vegetarian no onion no garlic foods , bhogs …just impossible to imagine.

  19. should have seen this earlier..City of joy ,Kolkata, my hometown, the cultural capital of India the most diverse culture in the world

  20. All they want to show about India is POVERTY. The video doesn't showcase places like salt lake, Rajarhat or South kolkata nor it shows monuments like the Marble palace, the writer's building, the Thakurbari, St Paul's , National Library, Star theatre or Indian Museum to name a few (only victoria was shown). So its very clear that they didn't want to show any heritage nor any comparatively modern and cleaner parts of the city. So its poverty and poor India they are focusing on, which they always have been doing.

  21. WestBengal is so much more than Kolkata. Why donโ€™t foreigners visit Darjeeling or Digha. Both the places are quite a thing

  22. I am afraid this video is a waste of time. It did not highlight the festivities of Kolkata, like Durga puja, Kali and Diwali, Christmas and new year, Luxmi and Saraswati puja. Chinese new year, id, Ramadan. Calcutta is full of festivals, all year round. This video certainly did not capture any of its beauty.

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