Crispy spinach chaat
Makes 16 | prep 15 mins | total time
- 200g gram flour
- 4 tbsp cornflour
- 1 tbsp ground coriander
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp ground turmeric
- ½ tsp mild chilli powder
- 150g baby spinach, very roughly chopped
- vegetable oil, to fry
- 200ml Greek-style natural yogurt
- 1 heaped tsp cumin seeds, toasted and ground
- 8 tbsp tamarind chutney (see recipe, below)
- 8 rounded tsp tangy coriander chutney (see recipe, below)
- Bombay mix to garnish (optional)
These can be made the day before, and chilled. Reheat in the oven at 180°C, fan 160°C, gas 4 for 10 mins.
- Mix together the dry ingredients, adding a good grinding of black pepper and 1 teaspoon salt. Gradually mix in 225ml cold water to give a thick smooth batter. Add the spinach and stir well to mix. It will be a bit gloopy.
- Heat a large wok or wide deep pan with a depth of about 3cm oil. When the oil is hot, around 180°C (use a kitchen thermometer, available in store), drop in heaped tablespoonfuls of the mixture – no more than 8 at a time in the pan, they shouldn't be overcrowded. They will be irregular, which will give lovely crispy edges. Turn the heat down a little and fry until golden brown, turning occasionally, about 4-5 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on kitchen paper to drain off any excess oil. Repeat with the remaining mixture.
- To serve, whisk the yogurt with the toasted ground cumin and season lightly. Serve 2 chaat per person, dollop some yogurt on top and drizzle with the chutneys. Sprinkle liberally with the Bombay mix, if using, and serve.
This is a really unusual version of chaat but so delicious; crispy, creamy, tangy, spicy and sweet. Every taste bud gets a hit. I love to add a pinch of carom seeds to the batter for extra flavour (you can buy them from ethnic stores, or online). Spinach chaat are really delicious on their own, so those of you who want a quicker treat can munch on these without adding the yogurt and chutney. Traditionally, these are garnished with sev (crunchy chickpea noodles), but Bombay mix makes a simple substitute.