Warm Chickpea Chaat (Indian Salad)


Sinfully Spicy- Warm Chickpea Chaat/Indian Salad 001

Last weekend was eventful.We celebrated our little munchkin’s first birthday. I made her a smash cake and we also got an adult cake. Her reaction towards both the cakes was the same – she cried. I think the flickering candle frightened her. It’s so funny that they react completely different to how you think they might.

Sinfully Spicy- Ingredients, Warm Chickpea Chaat/Indian Salad 002

Sinfully Spicy- Tamarind(imli Chutney) Chaat

Taking advantage of fading winters, I made this warm chaat this weekend. The weather out here is not yet hot for a crisp cold salad & a bit too warm for soups, this chaat drizzled with imli (tamarind) chutney & tossed with fresh mint leaves perfectly fitted the onset of spring mood.We are huge fan of  textures and multiple flavors in food and that is what this chaat is full of.

Sinfully Spicy- Warm Chickpea Chaat/Indian Salad 002

In India, chaat is a savory preparation which can be categorized as street food. There are few base ingredients which essentially form part of chaat- chopped onions or grated radish/cucumber for crunch,chaat masala (tangy spice powder) for the pungency & heat, tamarind chutney adds that saucy, tart layer while the green chutney & cilantro (or any herb)add the much needed freshness.The yogurt adds the acidity as well as cools down the palate.These are usually the toppings without which a bowl of chaat is incomplete. However, you can pick or drop any as per your taste.Chaat could be layering of fried dough or diced up fruits cut up and mixed together.If you are looking for really heavy options then kachoris (stuffed fried breads) or aloo(potato) tikki are your choices.

Sinfully Spicy - Mint

I like how healthy and filling this recipe turned out. You can also use black chickpeas(kala chana) or mung sprouts in this recipe and it works fine. It can be served as a perfect appetizer as well as a side dish. All the prep work like boiling chickpeas, potatoes, making the chutney, chopping toppings etc can be done a day before and then its just tossing everything together. Sinfully Spicy- Warm Chickpea Chaat/Indian Salad 003

Printable Recipe

I soak raw chickpeas overnight and then pressure cook them in enough water with little salt and a tsp of oil. Drain the chickpeas and reserve liquid for use as stock.

Ingredients (Serve 2)

  • 1 cup boiled chickpeas (or use canned)
  • 1 medium potato, boiled, peeled & diced into bite size pieces
  • 2 tsp oil, any neutral oil of choice
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • generous pinch of hing (asofetida)
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp roasted cumin powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice (or to taste)

Other ingredients/toppings

  • Chopped onions – about 1/3 cup
  • Chopped tomatoes/ Grape tomatoes
  • 2 Thai green chillies (adjust to tolerance)
  • 1 tbsp chopped mint leaves
  • Black Salt/Kala Namak ( to taste)
  • Chaat Masala (to taste) (available online or at indian grocery stores)
  • Imli/Tamarind Chutney – 2 tbsp or to taste (recipe below)
  • Roasted Cumin Powder- to taste
  • Red Chilli Powder – to taste

You can add cucumber, grated radish, pomegranate seeds, sev, crushed papris etc to add more texture and crunch.

Method 

In a pan, heat up the oil. Add the cumin seeds and once they sizzle add the hing. Once you smell the aroma, add the chickpeas & potatoes. Also add the garam masala, cumin powder and salt. Toss around for 3-5 minutes till the chickpeas look shiny.Remove from heat & add the lemon juice. Mix well.

Transfer to a large enough bowl and add the listed toppings as per taste. Toss well and serve immediately.

Imli/Tamarind Chutney

I soak raw tamarind in warm water for 4-5 hours and then mash it until pulp is separated.Sieve the pulp into a bowl and discard the seeds and thick fibers. You can also use store bought but just keep in mind that its very salty & slightly acidic so adjust seasonings accordingly. 

Ingredients (Makes about 1.5 cups)

  • 1/2 cup thick,tamarind pulp(store bought or homemade)
  • 3/4 cup – 1 cup jaggery powder/granulated sugar (adjust quantity to your sweetness)
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • pinch of hing (asafoetida)
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder (adjust to tolerance)
  • 1/2 tsp roasted cumin seed powder
  • 1/2 tsp kala namak/black salt [available in indian stores, else replace with normal salt, adjust to taste]
  • 1/4 tsp ginger powder
  • salt to taste
  • Up to 1/2 cup water ( you may or may not need it, usually not needed when using sugar instead of jaggery)

Method

In a small sauce pan, heat the oil.Once heated add the cumin seeds, as soon as the cumin starts to crackle, add all the ingredients listed above to the pan except water.Simmer the  for atleast 20 minutes till it starts to thicken. You can adjust water once the chutney has simmered. It will thicken more on cooling. Remove from heat, let cool, transfer to a container.

Let cool completely. This can sit for unto 3 weeks in a refrigerator.

Enjoy and Thanks for stopping by!

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Comments

  1. Scrumptious and healthy! The kind of chickpea dish I could eat on a daily basis.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  2. SO mouthwatering!! Awww, munchkin grows up so quickly!! Time flies :)

  3. Yummmmm!!!!

  4. So reminds me of Chennai’s beach sundal!

    • I Love sundals – with all the curry leaf & coconut sprinkles – absolute fav! Thanks for reminding me to make soon :)

  5. Belated birthday wishes to your munchkin. The chaat looks so mouthwatering. A wonderful snack for any time of the day :)

  6. Deepa says:

    Healthy and tasty looking chikpea salad. Excellent preparation.
    Deepa

  7. Looks delish! I absolutely loouu this salad. Gorgeous pics! :)

  8. I can eat anything with chickpeas and imli chutney. I brought a salad/chaat which is a deviation from this one. It’s uncooked and replaced the potato with avocado. No imli chutney, just lemon juice. Indian chaats are so versatile, you can tweak it so many ways. Loved the warm tone of the pictures. The mint picture is so spring like :)

    • Right..chaat is probably the best ‘suit to your taste’ kind of food. I always keep a jar of imli chutney in my fridge,its my fav to go condiment. Now I am intrigued by avocado in a chaat- tell me how was it?

      • Mine is a cheater’s chaat you can say. :p I cut up an avocado in small pieces and then add onions, tomato, cucumber, cilantro, cooked chickpeas, black salt, lemon juice, chopped green chili to it. Mix and then eat. very filling and healthy. Tastes very good.

  9. That chaat looks awesome!!! I can eat that everyday!!! Loved the clicks too!!!

  10. You take the best pictures, Tanvi!

  11. Happy Belated Birthday to your lil angel. I remember she was a valentine gift for you guys. Hard to forget the date :)
    Kid’s reaction, seriously! The other day I went to my friend’s place and her 3+ month old baby who is such a happy kid and smiles all the times at me, suddenly got scared and started crying so badly. Eventually I realized, I tickled her feet, super cute they were and I didn’t know that would scare the shit of out her LOL LOL

    • Thanks dear. LOL..see how could anyone think that someone would cry when tickled..but you never know babies..mine surprises me every day :)

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