Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 27th 2014 Contents • Twitter: @GuardianTT • Web: guardian.co.tt
SUNDAY, JULY 27, 2014
CHARLES KONG SOO
When someone says, "Ah want
ah roly-poly with everything," by
Nagim and Sons Doubles, it does
not mean he s asking for trouble,
like Mr Killa---unless he wants it
with dragon sauce.
The "roly-poly" is a creation of
Shawn Saddnagim, better know to
his loyal customers as George. He
works at the popular doubles outlet
on Chacon Street, Port-of-Spain. It
is a mini dhalpuri roti filled with
channa (chickpeas or garbanzo
beans); the dragon sauce is the fiery
pepper concoction intrepid cus-
tomers can ask for.
The "roly-poly" is but one exam-
ple of the evolution of doubles, the
popular, iconic T&T street food.
Nature abhors a vacuum---and
jaded palates---so enterprising ven-
dors saw an opportunity, and filled
it with channa, wholewheat doubles,
ital doubles, chubbles (Chinese dou-
bles), gourmet meat doubles, cheese
doubles, alloo (potato) pies stuffed
with cheese, chow mein, liver, giz-
zard, and smoke herring, along with
a dizzying array of condiments.
The Sunday Guardian interviewed
Saddnagim on Wednesday, while he
was dishing out his delectable fare
of doubles, aloo pies, channa and
"roly-polys," ably supported by his
family---brother Bunty and their aunt
Sheffina Bruce, affectionately known
by customers as "Granny."
There is no sign advertising the
"roly-poly." Its popularity and tasti-
ness are spread by word of mouth;
only regulars and foodies know about
it, and it usually sells out very fast
in the morning.
Saddnagim said, "We had the dhal
pie in the 80s and sold it with mango
chutney and pepper sauce.
"After Carnival 1985, we took the
mini dhalpuri, changed it up, rolled
it out with a bilnah, filled it with
channa and called it the roly-poly.
That s how the evolution came up.
"I wouldn t say I invented the dhal
pie, but I invented the roly-poly,
it s our name for it and it has taken
town by storm."
He said he carried all the condi-
ments, including pepper, cucumber,
tamarind, chadon beni, coconut and
for the health conscious
Other vendors offer other inno-
vations, including wholewheat dou-
bles cooked in palm oil to cater for
the health conscious, who may also
buy channa alone, without the bara.
Tru Valu supermarkets now have
in-house doubles vendors who also
sell wholewheat doubles and pepper
Gourmet doubles may include
meats like chicken, goat, beef, lamb,
seafood and even alligator, while
other vendors are experimenting
with dressings which can be more
readily found in a bake and shark at
Doubles purists and traditionalists
say it is sacrilegious to add anything
other than channa and pepper
between two bara.
There is even a smartphone app
to locate good doubles to eat in T&T.
New generation of doubles
Saddnagim said the "roly-poly"
and other vendors interpretations
of doubles were a new generation
of the doubles humble origins; so,
too, the wide array of condiments
which now included kuchela,
kachourie, anchar, pommecythere
He said doubles have become a
staple in various Carnival fetes and
all-inclusive parties and can now be
found at political rallies, weddings,
functions and birthday parties.
Saddnagim said his father started
selling doubles back in the days of
Woolworth and Kirpalani stores.
Now, George also sells doubles at
the Aranguez Savannah, opposite
Fitness Planet Gym, on afternoons
under his own brand name, Chatter
He said he even catered for boat
cruises, while the patrons were danc-
ing, he was moving with his dou-
Saddnagim said his customers
have even included a friend whose
wife had left him: the friend held a
party and hired him to serve doubles
at the celebration.
Saddnagim said these new trends
and innovations were good for the
doubles industry, as it was the nat
dragon sauce will
heat up your life
Shawn "George" Saddnagim, who operates the popular Nagim and Sons Doubles, on Chacon Street, in Port-
of-Spain, puts together a savoury roly-poly, a mini dhalpuri roti filled with channa for a customer.
PHOTO: SHIRLEY BAHADUR
Continues on Page A32
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