Oct 4, 2007

Bhelpuri

This is the quintessential time pass snack in India these days. Anytime one goes out and gets the urge for a quick bite one doesnt walk into a swank restaurant but rushes to the nearest road side Chaat vendor with a drooling request for "One plate bhel".

Its the simplest and fastest snack to make for that perfect tea time mazaa. Here's how you can make it at home :

What you need to make Bhelpuri
  • Puri (Puffed rice/Murmura)
  • Carrots
  • Onions
  • Potato
  • Tomato
  • Coriander
  • Lemon/ Lemon juice
  • Salt
  • Red chilli powder
  • Cucumber (optional)
  • Sev
  • Chaat masala (optional) - 1/4 tsp per plate
  • For the spicy chutney
    Green Chillies - 6
    Garlic - 8 pods
    Ginger - 2 inch piece
  • For the sweet chutney
    Tamarind - one small ball
    Jaggery - 2 inch cube
The beauty of this snack is that the quantity of vegetables you put into each plate is really upto one's taste. The amount of puri (puffed rice) that is put in is equivalent to the vegetables.

Preparation for making Bhelpuri
  • Grate the carrots and keep in a bowl
  • Cut onions into very small pieces and keep in a bowl
  • Cut tomatoes into very small pieces and keep in a bowl
  • Cut potatoes into half and cook them (along with skins) by using either the pressure cooker or boiling them in water.
  • Once potatoes are cooked, allow it to cool a little and then remove the skins. Then mash the potatoes and keep them in a bowl
  • Chop the coriander finely and keep
  • Sweet Chutney - Grind tamarind and jaggery together with some water
  • Spicy Chutney - Grind the green chillies, some coriander, ginger and garlic to a fine paste along with some water
Method to make Bhelpuri
  • Making a bhel is very easy. All you have to do is mix the ingredients.
  • In a large bowl take all the cut and grated vegetables and salt. Mix well.
  • Now add the Puri and chaat masala (if needed) and mix well.
  • Add a little lime juice, spicy chutney and sweet chutney and mix.
  • Serve with coriander, a pinch or red chilli powder and sev for garnishing

My fundas
  • Adding cucumber pieces adds a dash of freshness to the ensemble.
  • Some people also garnish it with grated coconut.
  • One could also add some small puris (or nipattus) crushed to the bhel to make it extra tasty
  • Pomogranate seeds also adds a lot of flavour
  • Substitute lemon juice for raw mango pieces during the season and it tastes yummier
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