Drooling Dahi Bhalla and Chatpata Chana Chaat

Dahi Bhalla and Chana Chaat have always been one of the most popular authentic street foods in the Indian subcontinent. Dahi Bhalla consists of deep-fried balls made with black and white lentils. Topped with thick yogurt, different chutneys and spices. Whereas, Chana Chaat is a chickpea salad made with boiled chickpeas, kidney beans, potatoes, onions, tomatoes and spices. You can have them together as a snack. The perfect combination! In Pakistan during Ramadan, iftar is not complete without these tasty snacks.

*Serve 6 people

Dahi Bhalla Recipe

Ingredients

For the Bhallas:

  • 1 ½ cups split black gram (Mash Daal or Urad Daal)
  • ½ cup yellow split (Moong Daal)
  • ½ tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 quart vegetable oil for deep fry
  • *Optional: 2 tbsp rice flour

Preparation

  1. Add both lentils in a large bowl, then wash and soak in water overnight or at least 4 hours.
  1. Now, drain the water and grind in food processor, it should be a smooth fluffy batter, not grainy.
  1. Transfer the blended batter into a wide bowl, and whisk the batter for 5 minutes.
  2. Add salt and baking powder.
  3. Drop a small ball of batter for testing in a bowl of water. If the ball floats, the batter is ready. If it does not float, this means the batter is thin and you should add rice flour to the batter. This will thicken the batter.
  4. When the batter is ready. Keep aside for 10 minutes.
  5. Heat karahi (or wok) on high heat then add vegetable oil for deep frying.
  6. When the oil becomes hot, add a small amount of batter for testing in the oil. It should quickly come to the surface. This means it is the right temperature to fry the bhallas. If the oil is cold, the bhallas will get soggy and absorb the oil. If the oil is too hot, the bhallas will fry faster from outside, and the inside will be uncooked.
  7. Add 1 tbsp full of batter gently in the hot oil.
  8. Deep fry the bhallas on medium heat until golden brown and crisp.
  1. Remove from oil with slotted spoon and keep aside.
  2. Do not over crowd the frying pan, give enough space for the bhallas to fry. Repeat until all batter is finished.
  3. Then take another large bowl with 2 ½ cups of warm water and add 1 tbsp salt.
  4. Add the Bhallas to the water, soak in water for 3 minutes.
  1. After 3 minutes, take each Bhalla into palms and gently flatten and press to remove excess water, keep aside.

Ingredients

For Yogurt (Dahi):

  • 750 grams (3 1/3 cups) yogurt
  • 128 grams (1 cup water)

Preparation

  1. In large bowl add yogurt, whisk yogurt with water. Keep aside.

Ingredients

For Garnishing:

  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black salt
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • ½ tsp chilli flake
  • ½ tsp chaat masala powder
  • ½ tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp green chutney
  • 2 tbsp tamarind chutney
  • *For both chutney recipes click here! and scroll to the bottom of the page

Plating:

  1. Place bhallas in a wide bowl, do not stack over but rather spread them as one layer.
  2. Pour the yogurt (dahi) on top of the bhallas.
  3. Sprinkle all the garnishing masalas on the top.
  4. All done! You can serve with chana chaat.

Notes:

  • You can freeze your bhallas in zip lock bags and store for 2 months. When you need your bhallas, simply take them out of the bags and soak the bhallas in the hot water for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, remove the bhallas from the water and let them cool down. When it has cooled down, press the bhallas between your palms to remove excess water. Add your yogurt and masalas on the top.
  • You can use chickpea flour instead of lentils for the bhallas.

Chana Chaat (Chickpeas Salad) Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 can (796 ml) boiled chickpeas
  • 1 can (540 ml) boiled kidney beans
  • 3 boiled potatoes, peeled and cut with small cubes
  • 1 diced onion
  • 1 diced tomato
  • 1 tbsp chopped green chilli
  • 2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves
  • 1 tbsp chopped mint
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • ½ tsp chaat masala
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • ½ tsp cumin powder

Preparation

  1. In wide bowl, add all ingredients and mix well.
  1. Let it sit for about 10 minutes so the flavours are enhanced.
  2. Adjust seasonings if required.
  3. Serve alone or with dahi bhallas.

One most famous combinations is to serve dahi bhallas and chana chaat together.

*Optional: In wide bowl add bhallas, boiled chickpeas, boiled potatoes, slices of onions, chopped tomatoes, chopped green chillies, chopped coriander leaves, chopped mint leaves and then pour yogurt on the top and sprinkle with the garnishing masalas listed above. Also, add green chili and tamarind chutney as well as papri pieces, which are crispy fried chickpeas fritters like crunchy chips. These papri pieces can be bought as your local desi store.

Enjoy!!

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