I am a die-hard fan of chaats, so much so that I start missing them if I haven’t had any for about a week. 🙂 Chaats are something I love trying out in different nooks and corners of the city, to find out which ones suit my taste buds the most.These days, though, I have cut down greatly on eating street food, and try to make my own version of chaats at home.
While I love churmuri, the Bangalorean version of bhel poori, at quite a few places around the city, authentic Bombay-style bhel poori has always been difficult to come by. That is something I most always make at home. This is the style of bhel poori that I have grown up eating back in Ahmedabad, and which has always reminded me of home. Apparently, this is the kind of bhel poori that you get at Chowpatty, Bombay – I have never visited, so I have no clue. This bhel poori has a very different taste from churmuri, and the husband and I happen to just love it.
Today, I am here to tell you my way of making it.
Ingredients (serves 4):
3 fistfuls of roasted puffed rice (aka pori or murmura)
2 fistfuls of nylon sev (I commonly use store-bought sev, Garden brand)
About 1/2 cup sev/ omapodi (normal-sized sev that is not as fine as nylon sev – I usually use store-bought sev, mostly MTR brand)
A few masala shing (You could use Congress kadalai too)
6-7 papdi (I use store-bought papdi, mostly Garden brand’s Bombay poori), broken into halves
1 medium-sized onion, finely chopped
1 small tomato, finely chopped
A small bunch of coriander leaves, finely chopped
About 1/2 cup pomegranate arils
A dash of lemon juice (optional)
A small piece of beetroot, raw, peeled and grated (optional)
1 small carrot, peeled and grated, optional
1 medium-sized potato, boiled, peeled and cubed
4 tablespoons of spicy green chutney, or to taste (Click here for the recipe)
4 tablespoons of sweet and sour chutney, or to taste (Click here for the recipe)
2 teaspoons roasted jeera (cumin) powder
2-3 pinches of black salt/ rock salt (kala namak)
2-3 pinches of chaat masala (I am partial to the Everest brand)
- Take all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Mix everything thoroughly.
- Serve immediately.
- As all of you know, bhel poori is a very inclusive dish. You can add just about anything to it, and it will taste good. This is just my version of the dish, based on remembrances of what I have grown up eating, learnt after a lot of trials and errors. You could add bits of raw mango, grated cheese, small cubes of peeled cucumber, chunks of pineapple to it, too – just about anything, like I said before.
- Be careful while you add the black salt – don’t add too much, for it will spoil the taste of the dish. You will be adding chaat masala too, which is a tad salty as well.
- I have tried adding boiled beetroot to bhel, but haven’t liked it much. I prefer adding it raw.
- Increase or decrease the quantities of the spicy and sweet chutneys, depending upon your personal taste preferences.
- The dash of lemon juice and beetroot are optional additions to this recipe, but I think adding them takes the taste to a whole new level. I would highly recommend both.
- You could add shing bhujia to the bhel instead of masala shing, too.
- You could use regular white salt in place of black/ rock salt, too, but I find black salt to have a distinct, beautiful smell and flavour of its own, which works wonders on a dish of bhel poori. If you have access to black salt, I would strongly urge you to use it!
I hope you will try this out at home too, and that you will love it just as much as we do!