My aunt stays in Surat, far away from all of us. She keeps insisting that we visit her but it used to prove difficult with the college and later the job schedule. We used to be on the look out for a chance to visit her. You see, she has this beautiful terrace flat in which we can relax and watch TV the whole day. Another event that used to tempt us to take leave and visit her would be the kite flying festival. Right from the end of November to the day of Makar Sankranti, the Surat sky is filled with kites of all shapes, sizes, and colors. Kites are available at all prices ranging from Re.1 to Rs. 1,000 and beyond.
I and my two brothers were lucky to take time from our schedules and travel to Surat in December. My aunt has a son who proves to be the perfect entertainment for all of us. He’s cute, mischievous, and has a horrible temper at the same time. The four of us would do nothing else but kite flying the whole day, coming down from the terrace only when our stomachs complained of hunger. Poor aunt used to prepare food in advance in anticipation of our hunger cries. One such dish that I loved owing to its spiciness and crunchiness is Papad Pohe. They are more like Chivda and serve as an amazing snack for tea-time. Though I did not pay more attention to the ingredients of this fabulous snack while gobbling them, I tried to re-create this recipe on my own).
(Adapted from my aunt’s recipe.)
Recipe cooking level: Easy
Preparation time: 15 minutes
You will need:
For the spicy poha:
1.2 cups thin poha
3.Salt and sugar to taste
4.1 tsp red chilli powder
1.1 tbsp oil for frying
2.1 tsp mustard seeds
3.1 tsp cumin seeds
4.Pinch of asafetida
5.½ tsp turmeric powder
6.5 green chillies
7.10-15 curry leaves
8.¼ cup roasted groundnuts
1.Heat oil in a pan and fry the papads. Break the papad in pieces.
2.Finely chop the green chillies.
3.Place the poha in a microwave safe bowl and cook for 3 minutes. When done, add salt, sugar, red chilli powder, and the fried papads in the poha.
4.Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan. Add the cumin and mustard seeds. When they splutter, add asafetida, turmeric powder, green chillies, and curry leaves. Saute for a minute. Now, add the roasted groundnuts and fry for 2-3 minutes. Pour this tempering in the spicy poha.
5.Mix well. Store the papad pohe in an airtight container.
Verdict: This crunchy poha tastes great with the occasional crunchy munch from the papads and the groundnuts. You can add some cashews too for some extra crunch. This is a wonderful snack for the kids in the May vacation.