Street Stall at Becharam Dewry

The old part of Dhaka city, referred to as Puran Dhaka, caters to some age-old dishes that still line its narrow alleys and draw in crowds from all parts of the city. Becharam Dewry is a street that houses a mosque from 1872 and sells a Puran Dhaka delicacy, the bakarkhani. Aga Bakar, a general in the army of Nawab Siraj-ud-daulah (early 1800s) is credited for the creation of this crumbly biscuit. Normally a Kashmiri specialty in India and Pakistan, the story in Dhaka follows Bakar’s love for a courtesan, Khani Begum, who was cherished by a rival general. She was eventually murdered as a result of her feuding suitors and the distraught lover Bakar is said to have inspired bakers to name his favorite bakery item as an ode to his love, resulting in the Bakar-Khani or bakarkhani. Puran Dhaka still follows the age-old tradition of waking up to the smell of freshly baked bakarkhanis with sweetened milk tea.

Becharam Dewry
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