What kind of warped brain would think of incorporating Sourdough (SD) into Chaat? Well the answer is right here because Yours Truly is constantly crossing lines and breaking boundaries in a quest to include SD into everything that emerges from the kitchen 😀
Yes Chaat, the quintessential Indian street food, has not been spared either and this variation in this popular range of snacks has been made easier by the fact that throughout the country Chaat has always been quite a target for experimentation, resulting in versions that coexist peacefully alongside the traditional and classic original forms too.
My Sourdough Semolina Crackers of the previous post, were the catalyst that resulted in this SD Papdi chaat. As mentioned in that post, the Sourdough Semolina Puri was also a very welcome outcome. You can read about that in the next post.
For now, let us immerse ourselves in the tangy, spicy, sweet and exciting pleasures of the Sourdough Semolina Cracker Papdi Chaat.
It is rather difficult to confine chaat to a particular definition and for those not familiar with this kind of food, chaat can be loosely defined as a range of snacks that are various combinations of Papdi (fried crackers), Puri (fried hollow dough balls), Sev (crunchy fried noodle lookalikes) etc that are mixed and matched with various chutneys and sauces like dry ginger, tamarind, mint etc and served with a profusion of chopped onions, chillies, tomatoes, boiled potatoes, boiled gram, coriander leaves, curds etc and spiced with masala powders like chaat masala, rock salt, chilli powder, cumin powder etc. By the number of ‘etceteras’ you will probably understand my struggle to encompass all the elements of chaat.
Chaat is a popular street cart snack but more hygienic versions are available in restaurants and small stalls. Of course nothing can beat the flavor of ‘unhygiene’ and the open ones on the street are the best in taste. Of course you would need iron guts to allow you to make that choice 😀
Chaat as Wiki tells me, comes from the Hindi word Chaatna which means to lick or devour with relish. And relishing is exactly what you will be guaranteed, as you lick your fingers and plates clean.
A few varieties of chaat are pani puri, bhel puri, dahi vada, alu tikkia, papdi chaat, sev puri, raj kachori etc.
Papdi Chaat –
The chaat that I have chosen to make with my SD crackers, is the Papdi chaat. This is one of the easier chaats to make and the process mainly entails a putting together of all the ingredients. One needs the Papdi which is a circular deep fried crisp cracker of around 1 inch diameter and made using refined flour (APF/maida) or even whole wheat flour.
The papdis are drizzled with tamarind sauce, mint-coriander chutney and sweetened curds. Then spice powders like chaat masala, chilli powder, rock salt etc are sprinkled on them and they are finally topped with generous amounts of chopped onion, tomato, green chillies, coriander leaves, bits of boiled potato, sev etc.
While this is a basic outline of a recipe, one is free to leave out ingredients or add anything else of choice like grated carrots, raw mangoes, pomegranate etc. There is no real hard and fast rule and digressions and transgressions are permitted 😀
My recipe uses whatever I had at hand. You can feel free to alter almost everything.
My Papdi Chaat –
To create this recipe, you will first need to bake the papdis from my Sourdough Semolina Crackers post. You can opt for either the Maida (All Purpose Flour – APF) or the Whole Wheat Flour (WWF) one.
I have made 2 kinds of chaat with the papdis. One is the regular recipe where I have topped the papdis with the other ingredients. The second version uses the scraps that were a by product of baking the crackers and I have tossed them in with all the other ingredients, like how one would toss a salad.
Recipe for Sourdough Papdi Chaat (2 ways) –
Approximately 15 minutes to put things together.
(the quantities are according to your preference. See the photos to get an idea)
Onion – finely chopped
Tomato – finely chopped
Green chillies – finely chopped
Coriander leaves – finely chopped
Sweetened curds – See Notes
Tamarind sauce – See Notes
Roasted jeera (cumin) powder
Salt or Rock salt
Method 1 –
Place the Papdis on a plate. Top them with the onion, tomato, green chillies and coriander leaves. Sprinkle the spice powders and drizzle the curds and tamarind sauce.
Method 2 –
Break the cracker scraps into small bits and toss them together with all the other ingredients.
How to consume –
Papdi chaat should be eaten right away. Do not put together the elements ahead of time or they will get soggy. Assemble only as much as you will consume immediately. It is a good idea to keep all the ingredients ready and mix together just before eating.
Sweetened curds – use thick curds (yogurt) and add organic sugar (or any sweetener), salt, chaat masala and red chilli powder, all as per your taste. Keep chilled until use.
Tamarind sauce – you can use ready made chutney/sauce or make your own.
I hope you will successfully try this recipe and I would really appreciate if you leave your feedback in the Blog comments.