Chaat meets Nachos – East meets West in this dish. This fusion really works – I used corn chips instead of papadi and created “Chaachos”. To add to the authenticity of chaat, I used ragda instead of refried beans, tamarind sauce and of course coriander chutney. Incidentally tamarind is used in Mexican cooking.



200 grams dried white peas (safed vatana)

2 teaspoons vegetable oil

½ teaspoon black mustard seeds

6-8 curry leaves

A pinch of asafoetida (hing)

3cms ginger, peeled and chopped

1-2 green chillies, chopped

¼ teaspoon turmeric powder

Salt to taste


Soak the dried white peas overnight. Discard the soaking liquid, rinse. If you are using a pressure cooker, put the peas in the pressure cooker, add two cups water and cook for 15 minutes on low heat after the first whistle.

If you are using stove top method, put the peas in a heavy bottomed saucepan and pour 3 cups of water. Bring it up to the boil and allow to simmer and cook for 45 minutes to an hour.

Using a mortar and pestle, mash the ginger and green chilli to form a fine paste.

Take a clean pot, heat oil on medium heat. Add the mustard seeds. Mix and cover with lid until you hear them pop. Remove lid, add the asafoetida along with curry leaves. Stir in the ginger – green chilli paste along with the cooked peas. Mix in the salt and turmeric powder.

Allow to cook for five minutes. Check seasoning and set aside with the lid on until ready to assemble the chaachos.



3 tablespoons store bought tamarind puree

2 tablespoon date puree

5 tablespoons brown sugar

1 teaspoon hot chilli powder

1 teaspoon cumin powder

1 teaspoon coriander powder

150ml water

Salt to taste


Put all ingredients except salt in a saucepan and bring it to a gentle boil. Add salt and simmer for five minutes. Taste to adjust seasoning.



1 cup coriander leaves, stalks and roots

3-4 green chillies, chopped

100 grams brown onion, chopped

Juice of one lemon (3 tablespoons)

Salt to taste


Put all ingredients in a blender and blend to a fine sauce like consistency. If need be add a little water at a time.



Corn Chips

1 plus ½ cup cheddar cheese

Red Onion


Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.

Take a large baking sheet and line with foil. Arrange corn chips in a single layer. Spread half the ragda evenly over the corn chips. Repeat with another layer of corn chips and ragda. Sprinkle the cheese and bake in the oven until all the cheese is melted for about 25-30 minutes. Remove from heat and spoon the coriander and tamarind sauce. Top with slivers of red onion. Serve immediately.

(Serves 6-8)

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