Oh how the amazing spicy sweet tangy sour tastes of Indian food bring happiness as their flavours burst in the mouth. Ashoka brand mixed pickles had me almost giggling last week as I almost ate them by the spoonful at the local Indian cafe.
I have been chatting about Chat Masala this week with friends — it is a spice mix that embodies spicy sweet tangy and sour. It is sprinkled on raw (and sometimes cooked) fruit and vegetables — and chickpeas — for that burst of amazing flavour. Try it on grilled sweet corn!
This version of the Kachumber salad captures all of that. Such a simple salad, yet such a huge explosion of flavour.
Similar recipes include Apple and Grape Kachumber, Daikon and Carrot Kachumber, Chickpea (Channa) Chaat and Channa Chaat on Kovalam Beach. Also Watermelon Salad, Borlotti Bean Chaat, Spicy Vegetable Sticks and Chickpeas and Young Ginger Salad.
- Making your own Chaat Masala (or you can purchase it from your local Indian Grocery)
Kachumber | Chuchumber
Source : a fairly traditional recipe
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 0 mins cooking, 15 mins resting time
Serves: 3-4 people, depending how you use it.
These are suggested quantities only. You can adjust any element of this salad to suit your own taste and preferences.
3 ripe juicy tomatoes, chopped into small pieces
1 medium cucumber, peeled and chopped into small pieces
1 red onion, very finely chopped
finely chopped green chilli, to taste
1/2 – 1 Tblspn freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice
zest of half lemon, microplaned or finely grated
1/2 – 1 Tblspn mustard oil (optional, if you are not keen on mustard oil)
1/4 – 1/2 tspn black pepper, freshly ground
a large pinch cumin powder, or lightly crushed
1/2 tspn jaggery or brown sugar
1 tpsn chat masala (buy from your Indian Grocer or make your own)
1 Tblspn unsalted peanuts, roughly chopped
2 Tblspn mint and/or green coriander, finely chopped
salt (to taste)
Combine everything except the peanuts together and toss well. Taste and adjust lemon/lime, spices and salt. Allow it to sit for about 15 minutes (and up to several hours) to develop the flavours. Add the peanuts, mix and serve.
This also makes an excellent lunch wrap. Just get a large pita bread, fill it with cooked warm chickpeas or some hummus, add chilled kachumber, roll and eat. Yum!