This Article is From Nov 21, 2009

This winter, Makki ki Roti is out of reach

Jalandhar: Maize flour is selling at Rs 20 a kilo, which is almost double of what it was last year.

And Amar Kaur is finding it tough these days to give her family the flavour of the season. Despite winter setting in, she is unable to make Makki ki Roti and Sarson da Saag.

Therefore, she's mixing wheat flour with maize flour, to ensure the household budget isn't stretched too far.

"We used to go and get fresh saag, and cook Makki ki Roti. Now it is expensive. I mix wheat flour with maize flour and cook. Now we are using it in less quantity," says Amar.

Farmers in Punjab say paddy and wheat fetch handsome returns, thanks to a good procurement system. So many don't prefer to grow maize, and that's why Makki ki Roti is now getting out of reach.

"In the last 20 years I couldn't buy chicken and eat. Now even Maize flour is getting expensive. What will we eat? How can farmers afford this," says Balbir Singh, a farmer.

In cities, restaurants serving traditional Punjabi food say they are forced to revise their price list. A platter of Makki ki Roti and Sarson da Saag that used to cost Rs 50 till a few months ago, now sells for much more.

"We started serving thali from Rs 50. Now we are charging Rs 80 per thali. We also feel sad, prices are going up," says Maninder Kaur, restaurant owner.

Makki ki Roti, Sarson da Saag and white butter gives you the real flavor of Punjab. For a Punjabi this is better than a lavish spread. But as the prices of maize flour are increasing, Makki di Roti is fast disappearing from the dinner table.