Laxmi's Delights Chaat

Crispy Wheat Canapé Crowned with Savory Topping

I am cooking a big 20-course dinner for 50 people tomorrow. I have uploaded an appetizer that is part of the menu for you to enjoy or make it part of your carte du jour.

  • 1 large Yukon gold or russet potato
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Salt to taste
  • Plain yogurt, whipped
  • ½ cup sweet chutney sauce (see recipe below)
  • ½ cup hot chutney sauce (see recipe below)
  • Chaat Papdi (Indian crispy fried whole wheat rounds), available at Indian stores or substitute potato chips
  • ½ cup or more thin chickpea flour noodles (sev), available at Indian stores

Cook the potato in boiling salted water until tender; drain and let cool. Peel and dice the potato, and place in a large bowl.

Add the onion and cilantro to the bowl; toss gently to mix. Season with salt and mix well.

Drizzle with yogurt, sweet and hot chutney sauces and mix very gently. To serve, spoon about a tablespoon of the mixture onto individual Indian crispy chaat rounds or chips. Sprinkle sev noodles on top. Serve immediately.

Serves 4.

Sweet Chutney Sauce

Use this as a dipping sauce for crudités onion rings or fritters.

  • ½ cup raisins
  • 2 teaspoons tamarind concentrate dissolved in ½ cup water
  • 1 slice of ¼ -inch thick knob fresh ginger
  • ½ tablespoon sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin

Combine the raisins and tamarind liquid in a medium saucepan. Cook over moderate heat until raisins are very soft 6 to 8 minutes. Cool and transfer to a blender or food processor.

Add the ginger, sugar, water, salt and cumin to the blender. Process to a smooth puree; stopping as necessary to scrape down the sides of the container. Transfer to a serving bowl. Let stand a few minutes for the flavors to meld. Cover and refrigerate the chutney sauce if not using. It keeps well for up to 1 week.

Makes about 1 cup.

Hot Green Chutney Sauce

Add more chiles if hotter taste is desired.

  • 2 cups packed fresh cilantro with stems
  • 1 cup packed fresh mint leaves
  • 1 fresh green serrano or jalapeno chiles, stemmed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice
  • ¼ cup water

Combine all the ingredients in a blender. Process until smoothly pureed, stopping from time to time to scrape down the sides of the container.

Transfer to a serving bowl. Let stand a few minutes for the flavors to meld. The chutney can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Makes about 1½ cups.

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