I am so excited to present Jowar (sorghum) chaat salad. One of the vibrant, tasty and most importantly healthy salad. This is the most colorful, delicious and healthy dish I ever ate. To satisfy that longterm urge to have a clean, homemade meal, this vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, nut-free dish is here. Not just for Indian food lovers, this chaat salad is must eat dish for everyone who wants to try meatless, healthy, clean recipes.
Jowar, which is known to the western world as Sorghum, is widely used in India and Africa. Jowar is a versatile grain, that can be boiled, made chaats, soups, khichdi, replacement to rice, vegan stews. Jowar flour is used to make gluten-free roti or tortillas. Flour is also used in baking. Jowar is a gluten-free, high-protein, cholesterol-free grain with impressive nutrients as dietary fiber, iron, phosphorus, and thiamine. Ditch multivitamins. When you can make such a clean, homemade recipe, you do not need artificially fortified food.
Indian cuisine offers a number of healthy dishes. Many Vegan, vegetarian, paleo, gluten-free, nut-free dishes to choose from. Customize the Indian dish to your taste buds and you will hit the jackpot. Every day is a party day.
Chaat can be best described as salty, sweet and tangy savory snack. Chaat can be delicious and healthy if deep-fried items are avoided. Adding small amounts of fried stuff is ok, but consuming all fried items mean bloating yourself with calories.
Though there are tons of varieties of chaats, every dish has a unique, most cherishing taste. Chaats are a great way to socialize and entertain. The roadside carts in India and other countries serving chaats are favorite time pass spots to many families, friends, lovers, flirts. Chaats are excellent to entertain your guests with a side of cocktail or lemonade.
WHAT IS CHAAT MADE OF?
Chaat is basically made of below elements. With such a unique combination there is no question that chaat is Indian’s all time favorite.
- A Base: A carbohydrate and protein combination as a samosa, a papdi, garbanzo beans, peas or puffed rice.
- Chutneys: The famous green chutney made with mint, cilantro and tamarind chutney. They add spicy, sweet, tangy taste.
- Vegetables: Onions, tomatoes, boiled, mashed potatoes, cilantro, lime are usually topped over chaat.
- Condiments: Sev, boondi, spicy mixture made of fried gram flour batter are kids most favorite toppings.
- Spices: Amchur powder is dry raw mango powder which gives a sour tangy flavor to chaat. Chaat masala, black salt, cumin powder are few spices which spice up chaat and our taste buds.
HOW CAN WE MAKE CHAAT HEALTHY YET TASTY?
Now that we know Chaat is a combination of a carbohydrate and protein base, chutneys, some crunch, vegetables and spices, let’s see how we can make it healthier. Chaat by itself is healthy if home-made. By making chaat at home, you are avoiding low-quality ingredients, preservatives and expired items. Making chutneys at home isn’t labor intensive as you think. Choose protein base than fried or high carbohydrate. By choosing to make home-made, you have an unlimited number of items to choose. From more than 50+ varieties of legumes, choose a different one every time. This ensures to get you all unique nutrition from each legume. When you make home-made chaat, you don’t have to sacrifice papdi, samosa sev of boondi.
- Make home-made chutneys
- Soak and cook a different variety of beans every time you make chaat.
- Top chat with a variety of fresh greens, veggies, and sprouts.
- 1 cup Jowar | Sorghum grain
- ¼th cup diced red bell pepper
- ¼th cup diced orange bell pepper
- ¼th cup diced green bell pepper - optional
- ¼th cup diced celery
- ¼th cup diced red onion
- ¼th tsp shaved lettuce - optional
- 1 tbs grated raw mango - optional
- 2 tsp - healthy oil as olive oil
- 1 tsp - freshly squeezed lemon juice
- ⅕th tsp - chat masala
- ½ tsp black salt
- Soak Jowar grains for at-least 4 hours. Drain water, add 1½ cups water to Jowar. Place in a steel bowl. Add water to the bottom of pressure cooker. Place the bowl in the pressure cooker. Do not add salt before cooking.
- Jowar cooks slowly. A pressure cooker works best. If you don't own a pressure cooker, you can cook in a pot. I never cooked in a pot, so I am not sure how long it takes to cook.
- Cook Jowar in a pressure cooker for 4-5 whistles. White rice usually is cooked in 2-3 whistles. Jowar needs twice cooking time.
- Make sure Jowar is cooked. If you see any leftover water, discard. Add salt and mix well.
- Dice all veggies into ¼th of inch pieces.
- Add veggies, salt, lemon juice, oil, chat masala, pepper and black salt to jowar.
- Mix well. Garnish with lettuce and cilantro.
- Optionally top with green and tamarind chutney.
- Serve immediately.