But Kerala has always been different in everything ,the malayalee was known for frying anything that comes in his way be it fish or banana or tapioca or even bitter gourd !
but to him the banana chips made out of nendrakaya either raw or ripe fried in pure coconut oil is unique .
To the purist chips lover it should be coconut oil or nothing else ,though these days in Kerala specially in southern and central parts palmolein and sunflower oils are used to fry them but the taste is definitely poorer .
Kozhikode or Calicut is the home of chips and another delicacy called halwa which was said to have traveled to kerala from the Arab countries during their maritime trading days or it may be the other way round as Oman was known for its halwa
Slowly the trademark of Calicut chips started migrating to other places .
Ernakulam too had its own Malabar chips near south Railway station where there was always a big crowd of people with suitcases to pack them for their journeys in trains or cars to airports too would stop there in the last minute
I know as I always do this as chips is an excellent gift to give to your friends .
in The national highway to Palghat from Ernakulam once you reach Wadakancherry there is a huge line of chips shops though good it never met my standards of quality though the chips from Alathur SNR chips shop almost did .
chips is an importan item in all Sadyas or feasts of Kerala be it weddings or onam or vishu and there is a specific place for vartha upperi and sarkara upperi in the plantain leaf
My childhood is filled with the smell of chips !
Knowing my passion for chips my grandmother Karthiyayani amma would send for Chozhi our all time man friday
"chozhi mon ethi thaan poyi kuttiyappude kadennu kayavarthu vangigko
( our boy has come go get the chips )
my grandfather thampuran would mumble avende vayaru kolavum
( that means his stomach would be a mess )
I would wait for the brown paper bag to be delivered and would tear it open to feast on it and this would continue with grandma replenishing the stock as soon as it got over
luckily those days me being as thin as a reed
( unbelievable right )and nobody talked of dieting like now it was alright to do such things !
before we returned to Madras the big mansion would smell of boiling jaggery and jack fruit for making jam and cashew nuts from our trees fried to be packed for us along with ripe and unripe mangoes ,jackfruits sappotas and so many other things in sacks
once we got into the Mangalore mail with all our sacks deposited by grinning faithfuls we would wave Parappangadi good bye but to me it was more expectation as I waited for Tirur just two stations away where my fathers relatives waited with packets of what else chips and halwa knowing me
lovingly they would come to me calling Hari hari chips undu tto ( brought chips for you )
and so we would reach Madras with enough chips to start a small shop and I would jealously guard the yellow gold from my mother who had a large hearted penchant to donate it to our nosy neighbors who would barge in asking
Hari chips enge ?( Hari where is the chips )
Even to this day whenever anyone from my family come from India the only thing I ask them to buy for me is a packet of my dear chips
thsi chip from my childhood came to me now because I got a packet of chips from Philipines of all places !and a friend commented on my strange passion for what else CHIPS
( I acknowledge and thank for some photos from online )