Summer snack

Bhel PuriMemorial Day marks the informal start to summertime.  My culinary mind turns to cookouts, hot dogs, potato salad, lobster rolls…and bhelpuri.  Yes, bhelpuri, the popular Indian chaat (street food snack) made from crunchy puffs of wheat, rice, and chickpea flours, spices, sugar, and potato, usually bound together with a tangy tamarind sauce.

I first tasted bhelpuri at a hot summer ethnic fair on the grounds of West Windsor-Plainsboro High School (now High School South).  Crunchy, spicy, cool, and flecked with coriander leaves (cilantro), I was a goner.  Since then I have ordered many incarnations in Indian restaurants where I have found versions with whole chickpeas, coconut, tomato, onion, coriander or yogurt sauce, etc., like the endless variations that are served across India.

Look in the Indian supermarket for bhel mix.  There are big bags full of the crunchy ingredients with hot or mild seasoning.  You can buy it packaged with the sauce, or purchase jars of sauce separately.  The only real kitchen work involved is what is needed for any fresh ingredients you want to use.

So go ahead, fire up the barbie; I’ll be in the kitchen boiling the potato and chopping the coriander.

Faith Bahadurian

One thought on “Summer snack

  1. Bhelpuri is very famous Indian snack, I made at home last saturday, It’s a good starter for your party!Faith, I did not get a chance to login my computer otherwise I found that same on njspice,as I made on the next day.

    You can add cooked chana (garbanzo beans), roasted peanuts, cucumber, chopped tomato, spring onions, carrots, sprouts, any cooked beans like black eye bean, kidney beans, lima beans and the list goes on and on. So just be creative and add what you like 🙂
    Try it out ! You would love it.

    Same like bhelpuri, I also love chatpuri (it’s different version of bhelpuri).

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