Poha or chivda are the Indian names for flattened rice. These light and flaky things can be fried and mixed with nuts and spices to make a crunchy mixture, perfect with milky black tea or even beer. But the recipe I am going to talk about today is mostly eaten for breakfast, although I eat it as and when I feel like. There are 2 kinds of poha available in Indian grocery stores: the thin and the thick varieties. I feel the thin one is better for making the dry crispy snack mixture I mentioned earlier. The thick one is more suited for today’s recipe since it won’t get mushy when moistened.
- Thick poha (flattened rice): 1 cup
- 1 medium potato, cubed into 1/2 inch thick pieces.
- 1/2 cup peas (fresh or frozen)
- 1/2 of a medium onion, chopped finely
- 1 small green chilli, chopped finely (optional)
- 3-4 curry leaves
- Lemon juice, to taste
- Raw peanuts, about 1 table-spoon
- 2 whole dry red chillies
- Mustard seeds, 2 tea spoons
- A pinch of Asafoetida
- Turmeric powder, 1 tea-spoon
- Salt, to taste.
- Cilantro for garnish.
1. Put the poha in a colander or seive and wash under running water for a minute. Set aside to drain.
2. Heat 2 table spoons of oil in a pan. Once the oil is hot, add mustard seeds and dry red chillies.
3. After the mustard seeds have stopped spluttering, add a pinch of asafoetida and green chillies and saute for 10 seconds.
4. Then add the raw peanuts and saute till they turn slightly brown.
5. Next add curry leaves and onions and saute for a minute.
6. Follow with turmeric, potatoes, peas and salt. (I also add grated carrot and cauliflower sometimes).
7. Cover the pan and cook till the potatoes are done. You can add a little water if the mixture is too dry.
8. Once the potatoes are tender, add the moistened poha and mix thoroughly. The turmeric should stain the poha completely. Be gentle while mixing to not end up with a mush. Sprinkle a little water if it looks dry.
9. Once everything is mixed properly, turn off the heat and add lemon juice.
10. Granish with cilantro leaves and enjoy with ketchup and some bhujiya!