Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Healthy Paani-Puri

When we think of Mumbai street food the one of the first few things that come to our mind is Paani puri not from a posh restaurant but from a roadside bhaiyya. It is very difficult for anyone to resist an offer to have a plate of paani puri no matter howsoever busy or healthy that person is. One of the episodes of Sanjeev Kapoor's Khana Khazana long back had showed a pani puri recipe using grape juice as a substitue for the khatta-meetha chutney or paani. I loved the idea and have tried it out many times with great results everytime. Also i have been able to find substitutes for the grape juice as well. This recipe is simple to make with only one paani to make which can be modified easily to suit people who need spicy paani or mild paani.

1packet puri.
1 cup sprouted and steamed whole moong(lightly salted)
1 cup boiled and mashed potatoes seasoned lightly with salt and Everest Chaat masala.

For the Paani:
1-2 cups of juice(dark grape/prune/pomogranate)
2 tsp green chutney
1 tsp meetha chutney
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/4 tsp garam masala powder
1-2 tsp Black salt
Plain water as required to dilute the paani.

For the Green chutney:
Grind together equal quantities of cilantro/coriander leaves, mint leaves and green chillies with salt and 1 tsp of lime juice adding very little water as required.This chutney is a multi purpose chutney which can be used for any type of chaats, sandwiches etc and can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for upto a week. For more longer durations store in small ziploc packets in the freezer.

For the khatta -meetha chutney:
Soak a lemon sized tamarind and a few dates in warm water for some time . Deseed both of them and then grind them together to a fine paste adding a little salt, dry ginger powder(sunth powder),some jaggery and a pinch of red chilly powder. This chutney can also be stored for the abovementioned period in the same manner.
For all the people who do not wish to prepare the chutneys ahead or for people who lack time , they can use equal parts of store bought coriander chutney,mint chutney and green chilli chutney for the green chutney and store bought tamarind -date chutney for the khatta meetha chutney.
In a big bowl combine all the ingredients for the paani and set aside.
Take a plate and arrange 5-6 puris in it with a hole in the top centre and add a little of sprouted moong and mashed potatoes in it . Then fill each puri with the prepared paani and serve.

This procedure reduces the strain of individually serving the paani puri as you have to fill only one type of paani in the puris. To increase the spice level in the paani just add a littlemore of the green chutney to the paani and similarly to decrease the spice add littlemore of the khatta meetha chutney or juice to it.
Each guest can be served the puri, sprout , potatoes and paani seperately and they can themselves assemble it as per their needs.
With the store bought chutneys on hand or the homemade chutneys made ahead of time this dish can be prepared in no time at the last minute or the paani can be served chilled if desired either by refrigerating it or by adding ice cubes to the paani before adding the water.

1 comment:

  1. I love that you find the healthy side of every indulgent fast food and then it becomes accessible to us as health food.Pani puri has always been one of my favorites and now antioxidant rich thanks to you.