Owner PriaVanda Chouhan and her husband opened Desi Galli in 2012 to satisfy the Desi (Indian sub-continent diaspora) hankering for Indian soul food. Desi is a Hindustani term for the people, cultures, and products of the Indian subcontinent or South Asia and is derived from Sanskrit which means "one from our country". Galli symbolizes an ‘alley’ or ‘street.
Though her father warned her husband-to-be that she couldn’t cook, PriaVanda taught herself to make not only her mother’s recipes but also her husband’s family favorites. Inspired by Rachael Ray’s fast and easy methods for putting dinner on the table in under 30 minutes, she turned her home kitchen into a test kitchen, mastering a multitude of Indian recipes every day, and developing her own personal style of lighter, healthier, vegan and gluten-free cooking without sacrificing flavor.
Their restaurant specializes in Kathi (or Kati) Rolls, Vada Pav, Chaats and Biryani, all of which is prepared in front of diners in the restaurant’s open kitchen. Since they opened they have been featured in a variety of different outlets such as: The Rachael Ray Show, ABC News (TV), TimeOut (Kelly Choi) (TV), Jus Punjabi (TV) and the NY Times. They have also been voted best sandwich for their Aloo & Paneer Tikki by Time Out and voted one of the best dishes in NY by Village Voice for their Bhel Puri!
Share Your Story: Celebrating Immigrant Heritage Month
A panel event featuring the owners of immigrant-run food businesses in NYC.