All over northern India, roadside vendors sell street food, or chaat, from carts and makeshift stalls. One of the dishes most popular among hungry travellers is papdi chaat.
“It’s the Indian version of nachos and salsa,” says Amarjeet Singh, owner of Horn Please, a Fitzroy North institution famous for its Indian street food, regional curries and tandoori specialties.
To make the snack, a layer of crispy fried wafers, known as papdi, is topped with chickpeas and potato, then covered with a spiced yoghurt sauce, mint and coriander salsa, date and tamarind chutney, and pomegranate seeds.
Like its Mexican counterpart, papdi chaat’s classic combination of hot, sweet and savoury flavours makes it a perfect beer snack.
It “goes with all type of beers,” says Singh. At Horn Please, customers can choose from more than 20 beers to pair with the dish, including a strong international range featuring three from India.
While the original papdi chaat, also known as papri chaat, originated in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, the Horn Please version is Singh's own creation. He also owns Kyneton restaurant Dhaba at the Mill and its food truck offshoot.
Singh says the secret to making it at home lies in the toppings. “It’s a very simple dish,” he says, “provided the sauces are balanced in a perfect one-on-one ratio.”
Make your own version of this classic beer snack at home, ideal paired with the hint of spice in the James Squire Hop Thief No. 8 American Pale Ale.
Horn Please’s Papdi Chaat
1 large potato, boiled, peeled and diced
2 cups chickpeas, boiled
1 medium sized tomato, diced
1 medium sized Lebanese cucumber, diced
Handful of red seedless grapes, finely chopped
¼ pomegranate, seeds only
¼ cup coriander, finely chopped
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp chaat masala
½ tsp black salt
150g flat crisp flour wafers
½ cup mint and coriander chutney
½ cup date and tamarind chutney
½ cup yoghurt sauce
½ cup bean sprouts
To make salsa, mix together potato, chickpeas, tomato, cucumber, grapes, pomegranate seeds, coriander with lemon juice, chaat masala and black salt.
Arrange half the crisp flour wafers in a shallow plate or a bowl. Top with half of the salsa.
Add half of the three sauces evenly on top of the salsa. Repeat the same procedure for the second layer. Garnish with bean sprouts.
This article produced by Broadsheet in partnership with James Squire.