A chaat is a very popular Indian street food snack. Honestly so flavoursome- a perfect mix of sweet, spicy, salty and tangy. There are so many variations of it: samosa chaat, aloo papri chaat etc. Essentially, there is a base to the chaat (usually fried- like a fried puri or papri or a samosa), then topped with boiled potatoes (sometimes with chickpeas), spiced yogurt, sauces and garnishes.
Today I have decided to make an aloo papri chat: cheat’s edition. You can buy raw or cooked papri’s from your Indian shop, however, I have just used papadums and cornflakes, as they are much more readily available and still gives you the crunch. The sauces I have decided to make are chilli mint yoghurt sauce, chilli garlic yoghurt sauce and tamarind sauce. Toppings are usually Indian ‘sev’- a thin crunchy noodle or ‘bhel’- puffed wheat, so you could use this or Bombay mix. I have added blueberries, inspired by the delicious Indian restaurant Tamatanga in Nottingham.
Ingredients: (serves 6 as a starter)
- 4 small or 3 large potatoes, peeled and chopped into squares
- 1 can of cooked chickpeas, drained
- 2 tbsp chaat masala (shop brought/ see below how to make it).
- 1 pack papadums (I used Marks & Spencer’s mango chutney flavoured ones for more flavour) or if you want to be traditional you can use Indian papris
- 4 large handfuls of plain (not sugared) cornflakes
Coriander- mint yoghurt sauce
- 1 large bunch of coriander
- 1 large bunch of mint
- 1/2 lime, juiced
- 2 tbsp yoghurt
- Drizzle of olive oil
- Large pinch of salt
- 1 green chilli (optional)
Chilli- garlic yoghurt sauce (optional)
- 5 kashmiri chillies, soaked for 10 minutes in boiling water, then removed from water (if you don’t have these you can use regular chillies or chilli powder)
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 tsp cumin
- 3 tbsp yoghurt
- Pinch of salt
- Tamarind sauce (can find in a bottle from the Indian section of supermarkets)
- Bombay mix, sev, or bhel traditionally used (optional- you can find this in your local indian shop- I have left it out for today)
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- Handful of coriander, chopped
- Handful of roasted peanuts, lightly crushed
- Some extra cornflakes, lightly crushed
- 1 inch ginger, shredded
- 1 pack of pomegranate
- Handful of blueberries
- Juice of 1 lime, squeezed
- Extra sprinkle of the chaat masala spice
- Mango chutney (optional)
- Nigella seeds (optional)
Chaat masala (spice blend)
- 2 tbsp cumin seeds
- 1 tbsp coriander seeds
- 1 tbsp fennel seeds
- 1/2 tsp black pepper (ground)
- 1/2 tsp of asafoetida (hing)
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 2 tbsp mango powder (amchur)
- 1 tbsp black salt (if you have this, I do not like the smell! I just put a pinch of white salt instead)
- Wash the potato cubes in warm water to remove some of the starch. In a pan of boiling salted water, boil them for around 10 minutes until cooked through. This won’t take long as they will be in small cubes. Watch that you do not overcook them or they will become mushy. Rinse them with cold water post cooking, to cool.
- In the meantime, start by layering the papadums on a large plate or tray. Keep the majority whole, but crush a couple and sprinkle on top. Then add the cornflakes to this, as your base.
- If you are not making your own chaat masala then skip this step. If you are, in a dry pan (no oil), toast the cumin seeds, coriander seeds and fennel seeds for a few minutes on a low to medium heat so that it does not burn. Then in a pestle and mortar or blender add the seeds to the rest of the spices. Pound or blend until well mixed together.
- Mix the cubed cooked potatoes and drained chickpeas with around 2 tbsp of the chaat masala or to taste.
- Add the spiced potatoes and chickpeas on top of the papadums.
- Then make the yoghurt sauces by blending all the ingredients for the coriander- mint sauce and chilli-garlic sauce sepearately in a blender. For both sauces, I blend all the other ingredients together first, then add the yoghurt last.
- Pour over both sauces and tamarind sauce over the chaat. You will have a lovely vibrant plate now.
- Then finish the dish with all the garnishes. You can choose which ones you like.