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Foreign team members of Chennai Super Kings (CSK) were bowled over by litti chokha, a popular dish in Bihar, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh, served at a birthday party thrown by Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
The team was celebrating the birthday of South African player Faf du Plessis’ wife at Dhoni’s Ranchi residence, Shaurya, on Thursday. Only the CSK team members and officials were invited.
The Indian Premier League (IPL) had returned home after its UAE leg and Dhoni served up the traditional fare in style a day before his team beat the Kolkata Knight Riders in his hometown.
The litti (wheat balls stuffed with powdered gram or lentils and spices) and chokha (roasted and mashed potatoes or brinjals with tomatoes or all together) combination proved a smash hit with the guests.
Ram Kishore, one of the cooks, said, “Sabhi videshi khiladi litti chokha bahut pasand kar rahe the. Dhoni sir sabhi ko litti chokha ke bare main bata rahe the.” (Litti Chokha was the favourite dish of all the foreign players at the party. Dhoni was explaining to them its ingredients and preparation.)
CSK coach, New Zelander Stephen Fleming, apparently showed great interest in the dish and engaged Dhoni in a conversation over details of how it was made.
Though the menu was elaborate, Du Plessis, Brendon McCullum, Dwayne Smith, John Hastings favoured the litti chokha. Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, known for his variations, too went for the traditional dish.