Snack food of the Gods: Puri

I love to eat. I particularly love to snack. Thailand had great snack food & Malaysia, you are always ready & willing to ply me with some great snack food, but the ultimate snack food? Puri. Behl puri, sev puri, pan puri, dahi puri… you all are rock stars.

Puris can be found mostly in Mumbai & surrounds. Behl puri is the most famous but, sev puri was my favorite. So what is a puri? Well, every vendor has their own spin on it but essentially puris are fried or puffed rice (or sometimes wheat) fried vermicelli noodles, combined with finely minced tomato, onion, cucumber, potato,cilantro sometimes chickpeas, with tamarind chutney, sometimes curd & masala spice. The result of the varying combinations are a crunchy,sweet, spicy flavor sensation.

puri menu at chowpaddy beach in Mumbai

Puris are street food. Pani puri can be found at roadsides & are meant to eaten quickly. Each pani puri is one bite. The vendor pokes a hole in the top of the puri & a thin, spicy, delicious tamarind “water” is poured in the hole. Sometimes they are more substantial with a bit of potato or dal in the water. You simply pop them in your mouth as the vendor fills them. They are a great snack & a way to fill the midday void. 5 pani puris are 10 rupees or about 25 cents so they are a bargain too boot.

pani puri vendor

pani puri

me enjoying pani puri in Amritsar

behl puri is usually served in a newspaper cone & mixed to order. I tried a plethora of Behl puri in Mumbai but my favorite, by a mile, was from the vendor next to Fabindia in the Fort district. There is also a a great lime soda vendor nearby, which is the perfect accompaniment to the spicy Behl puri.

Behl puri... use the wafer as a makeshift spoon & eat it last.

sev puri. like behl purr but with more tamarind & is therefore, usually wetter

dahi puri. pani puri filled with dal & topped with curd. spicy, cool, crunchy. yummy.

not technically a puri, but so damn good i had to include it. It's a chaat. similar, street food, crunchy spicy goodness. these one had potatoes, tamarind, curd, really damn tasty.

So there you have it folks, my favorite snack food. I think there is a portland street cart that needs to open……

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About Miss Q

I am a travel obsessed foodie, with an inexplicable love of clamato, elvis costello & the unknown
This entry was posted in Food, India. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Snack food of the Gods: Puri

  1. Chantal Rosenthal says:

    I agree on a new street cart. It sounds delicious. I missed your birthday! Happy late birthday. Same old stuff with us. We just got back from a Bat Mitzvah in Denver last weekend. We had a great time with Eli’s brother and sister in law and the cousins. Visited with the only friends from Denver that were able to track us down. This weekend Bend Bar Mitzvah and then the grand finale a triplet Bat Mitzvah over Thanksgiving weekend. Then the ride is over. Love the updates. Miss you, but actually I feel I am in better contact now than normal.
    Chantal

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