Cooking is one of my passions. I like to make nutritious and tasty foods at home without using preservatives and artificial colors.
Panipuri, a Popular Indian Street Snack
Panipuri is a popular street snack served in several parts of India. It consists of a fried crisp round-shaped, hollow shell called "puri" that is filled with a mixture of flavored water (pani), tamarind chutney, potato, chaat masala, onion, carrot (optional), and chickpeas or green peas. People eat it with different combinations. But all these varieties taste delicious.
Ingredients like puri, pani-making powder, and chaat masala are available in Indian stores. Hence, it is easy to make panipuri at home. It is more economical to make this dish at home than to get it at a restaurant. One more advantage to making it at home is that you can make it healthier by adding more ingredients.
|Prep time||Cook time||Ready in||Yields|
serves six people
- 30 panipuri, Panipuri packets are available in Indian stores
- 3 potato, boiled, mashed
- 1/2 cup carrot, grated
- 1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup green gram sprouts, boiled
- 1 1/2 tsp panipuri masala, for making pani, available in Indian stores
- 1/4 cup jaggery, use either dates or jaggery for making sweet chutney
- lemon size tamarind
- 1/4 cup dry dates, optional, you can use either jaggery or dates
- 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp red chili powder
- 1/4 tsp coriander powder
- 1/4 tsp cumin powder
- 1/4 tsp garam masala powder, available in Indian stores
- a few coriander and mint leaves, chopped
- salt as needed
- 2 tsp oil
- 1/4 tsp sugar
- Take panipuri masala in a bowl. Pour one and a half glass of water to it. Add a half teaspoon of sugar (optional).
- Squeeze chopped coriander and mint leaves to it. This aromatic sour liquid is called as 'Pani'.The fresh leaves impart special aroma to the pani. Refrigerate the pani for 15 minutes. Pani tastes better when it is cold.
Making the Stuffing:
- Boil potatoes, mash them. Heat oil (as per measurement) in a kadhai. Throw chopped onion into it. Saute till it is transparent. Lower the fire. Add mashed potato, red chili powder, turmeric powder, chaat masala, coriander and cumin powder, garam masala powder (optional), sugar (optional), and salt. Mix well. Turn off the fire. Transfer the stuffing to a serving bowl.
- Collect chopped onion in a bowl.
- Collect grated carrot in a bowl.
- Collect boiled and salted green gram sprouts in a bowl.
All the above items are used as the filling in making panipuri.
Making the Jaggery-Tamarind or Date-Tamarind Paste:
- Grind dates with water to get a liquid paste.
- Soak tamarind in warm water for 30 minutes. Separate the watery pulp. Add jaggery or date paste to it. Boil the mix for few minutes to get a moderately thick, flowing consistency liquid. Add a pinch of salt (optional).
- Transfer the paste to a small serving bowl.
This paste is also used as a stuffing in panipuri along with the other items.
How to Serve Panipuri:
- On a table, arrange the items like puri, pani, chopped onion, grated carrot (I serve it), boiled green gram sprouts, potato stuffing, and tamarind-jaggery or date-tamarind paste, each in separate bowls.
- Take a serving plate. Hold a puri in your hand, make a big hole on the top of the crispy puri. Stuff half teaspoon potato filling, a few chopped onion, a small quantity of the grated carrot and some boiled green gram sprouts. Pour a little tamarind paste and finally, fill the left out space with the pani.
- Quickly put it into the mouth. Wow! What a great experience! The combination of panipuri is so thrilling that you will go on eating one panipuri after the other. They are crunchy and light.
- Note: You have to fill the 'pani' only after stuffing the puri. After pouring the pani, straight away you should insert it into the mouth. Otherwise, it will start crumbling.
Places to Eat Panipuri in America
1. Chicago: UruSwati Vegetarian Restaurant
Here, you can get panipuri just like the ones you get on Indian streets. They use black chickpeas in the recipe.
Address: 2629 W Devon Ave., Chicago, 773-262-5280
2.San Jose, CA: Chaat Cafe
Best place to chill with panipuri platter.
Address: 834, Blossom Hill Rd, San Jose, California, 408-225-2233.
3.New York City: Drunken Munkey
They serve upscale panipuri at this Indian-French bistro. Here, you have the pleasure of preparing your own panipuri with their ingredients. They serve different flavored waters, including home-made tamarind-mint liquid.
Address: 338E, 92nd St., New York, 646-998-4600
4. Los Angeles: Bombay Cafe
The name makes you nostalgic. In this cafe, you get a healthier panipuri. They use sprouts with home-made chutney, paired with mint and cumin blend in water while making panipuri.
Address: 12021, W Pico Blvd., Los Angeles., 310-473-3388
5. Irving, TX: Taj Chaat House
Panipuri is served here Gol Gappa style.
Address: 1057, W Rochelle Rd.,Irving, TX, 214-596-1133
6. Philadelphia: Indeblue
You get unique flavored panipuri called 'Dahi Avocado Chaat' here, in which fresh avocado, red onion, tangy yogurt and homemade chutney along with chickpeas are stuffed into puffed puris.
Address: 205 S 13th St., Philadelphia, 215-545-4633
7. San Francisco: Dosa
Panipuri with an American kick is the specialty of this food joint. Though puri is same as the ones served in other places, the filling and pani are different here. Pani has fresh aroma due to the spicy and sour mix of cilantro and mint leaves. The filling has roasted butter fruit squash along with the other items commonly found in panipuri.
Address: 995, Valencia St.,San Francisco, 415-643-8823
8. Houston: Kiran's Restaurant & Bar
The type of panipuri we get here is not exactly like the Indian panipuri. It is like an improved and healthier version. It is served just like homemade panipuri.
Address: 4100 Westheimer, Houston, 713-960-8472
9. Cambridge, MA: Hit Wicket
It is a cricket loving eatery. They serve all ingredients for panipuri like the ones served in other places. In addition to that, they serve a flavored water and spiced honey mixed with vodka in a martini glass. Customers have the choice to mix everything into a cocktail, just like eating panipuri.
Address: 1172, Cambridge St., Cambridge, MA 617-945-9259
10. Chicago: Vermilion
This is an upscale restaurant that serves many varieties along with panipuri, which is served with a different twist. They also serve Panipuri Margarita, a cocktail made out of pani topped with fried puris.
Address: 10W Hubbard St., Chicago, IL 312-527-4060