Pani Puri, Indian street food at home

Pani Puri

Pani Puri

 

I don’t know a single Indian who doesn’t love pani puri. I also don’t know a single Indian who can not eat about 20 in one sitting. Someone even told me one time that they had a dream where they were shopping, and the store was full of gol gappa. Huge ones. I think when people start having dreams about this chaat, it’s the real deal.

You will definitely find pani puri at any legit Indian chaat house in the US. Maybe not so much in restaurants. But if you live in a city where they have a large Indian population, for example, Atlanta, you will find chaat places full of typical Indian street food.

When I was preparing to go to India, all of my friends told me whatever I do, not to eat the pani puri. Street foods are the gateway to being sick, I suppose. Especially when the walas are standing along the side of the road in the 100+ degree heat, with flies roaming everywhere, and people touching all the food. The pani puri wala will actually dip his hand in the pani to fill the puri. Say that five times fast. This was the only chaat I avoided on the streets. I did, however, have pani puri multiple times where the puri was regulated and the walas wore gloves. I did end up getting sick, but not from having chaat. And let me tell you, it was no fun.

Pani puri is probably one is the healthiest Indian chaats, aside from the puris. You could bake them to make them healthier. But ain’t nobody got time for that. Especially when throwing a party. So of course, whenever I have a party, pani puri is always involved.

The pani, which means water, is flavored with all sorts of tangy good stuffs. You then break the top of the puri with your finger, and fill it with more good stuffs, then dip the puri in the pani and eat. Delicious!

You can buy puris at any Indian store. You can also buy masala for the pani, but it is much better when you make it yourself, and much more flavorful when you add fresh ingredients to the premade masala.

I highly encourage you to try pani puri. It is really delicious. And super quick and easy to put together. All you need is a blender.

Ingredients To Make Pani:

  • puris, which can be bought at an Indian store
  • 3 cups water
  • handful of cilantro
  • handful of mint
  • 1 tsp chaat masala
  • 1 tsp black salt
  • 3 tbsp pani puri masala
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 green chili
  • 1/4 cup tamarind extract

Toppings, Optional, but Suggested

  • finely diced tomatoes
  • finely chopped onions
  • sprouts
  • chickpeas
  • tamarind chutney
  • yogurt
  • finely chopped boiled potatoes
  • whatever you want

To Make:

In a blender, blend together green chili, cilantro, and mint with a half cup water. 2013-08-17 15.52.38 2013-08-17 15.53.37

Add this mixture to a large container full of water. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir. 2013-08-17 16.02.52

Taste and adjust spices as necessary. It should be nice and tangy. My friends even like to drink the pani by itself, after they have finished snacking. Me too. It is quite nice.

Now just assemble however you want to assemble. This is what I did. 2013-08-17 17.16.44

The pani will look like this2013-08-17 17.20.55

Now add the fillings to the puri, and dip into the pani2013-08-17 17.18.09

Put it in your mouth. Let the deliciousness happen. Chew. Swallow. Repeat.

2013-08-17 17.20.47 2013-08-17 17.20.39 2013-08-17 17.17.58 2013-08-17 17.16.28

 

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16 responses to “Pani Puri, Indian street food at home

  1. I’m very impressed and you are so very right in saying that all indians love pani puri. Loving the vibrant colour of your pani! we went to a wedding reception recently and that’s where they served a puri with some filling plus a shot glass of pani! Was really awesome 🙂

  2. Thanks for sharing this post. I’ve never heard of pani puri before but there is a wonderful Indian restaurant near me that serve dahi puri which I love. They remind me very much like nachos 🙂

  3. Uh, pani and puri and ‘pani puri’…. brain confused! *positive self-talk* I think I’ve got this. Ok, pani = Indian herb soup and puri = little hollow cracker balls. Yeah? They look delicious, whatever they are. Good on you for eating the street food. I have such a weak stomach, I’m always too scared when I visit Asian countries 😦 Good thing I can now try this at home. Yaay! xx

  4. I am only Indian in heritage and I LOVE pani puri (and other Indian street food). Yum! I think I need to plan a visit to India soon!

  5. Was going through several food-pages about Indian cuisine… n found myself redirected on your blog! I kept reading a few things again n again… I’m quite surprised seeing ur love for Indian cooking!!! Great dishes that you tried out in-house… Yummy they look, with authentic Indian flavors… Loved ur spirit dear 🙂

    Visit my space http://www.cookingwithsj.com for more Indian dishes!!! It’s a vegetarian blog… 🙂 Will wait for you to visit me when you have time…

  6. I agree with Shruti.. I re-read your blogs a lot too.. Love your recipes.. I make pani puri at home too… You could try adding about half an inch og round ginger and a couple of garlic cloves to the blender while making pani, adds a little more flavor. Also a must are lemon juice and little black salt. Add these, refrigerate the pani for an hour and you’ll have the best pani in town..

    • Thank you so much! Oops, I forgot to add lemon to the recipe, haha! I always use it, I guess sometimes I just get a little brain fart. At least I didn’t forget the black salt. Will try garlic and ginger next time!

  7. Me too – I’m a white girl who now moved to Bangalore and I really love Pani Puri! THX for the recipe – I follow you now and visit you surely more often 🙂

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