Zakir of Palakkad sets up his kiosk beneath a high-mast light at Kurkancheri in Thrissur every evening. Here he sells his trademark coin parippuvada.
There are two reasons for the quirky adjective given to the indigenous snack. You can buy the snack in exchange of a two-rupee coin. The other reason being the parippuvada is smaller than the usual ones, more like coined shape. But tastes just as delicious.
Zakir has been staying at a small room at Valiyalukkal in the district for four years. His work starts at 8 am as he sets to make the batter for the vada. He opens the kiosk by 3pm.
The first to go on sale is the hundreds of parippuvada. Soon the aromas of samosa, cutlet and chicken rolls fill up the kiosk. He has to sell a variety of these snacks before he can start counting the profits for the day. The 2-rupees parippuvada alone will not fetch him the profit. But some people take about 10 or 20 at one go. He sells as many as 500 parippuvadas in a day. He makes the hundreds of parippuvada all by himself.
The other snacks also come at relatively cheap prices but parippuvada goes for the cheapest at the kiosk.
He ensures that these are served hot, straight from the Kadai. The profit made from these is the sole earning of Zakir, who has to feed his three children and wife back home in Palakkad.
Then why does Zakir sell coin parippuvada for a meagre Rs 2?
"Some days, schoolkids turn up at the kiosk. They fish out two-rupee coins from their pockets and extend them with pride. And I serve them hot parippuvada in return. You should see the pure glee on their faces as they gorge on the snacks. That's enough for me!" quipped Zakir.