When you have been to an Indian restaurant I am sure you have nibbled on the papad and chutney combo offered as soon as you take a seat. Interesting there is a better one – the Masala papad. The combination of thin cracker with a salad and then topped with all those tongue-tickling masalas is the one you need to try. This is a very quick appetizer to put together even at home.
In saying that, I assume, every Indian home literally will have a few packs of papad for the crispy side to fo on the plate. With the Kachumber salad, some chaat masala, some store-bought sev, the appetizer is ready. Best of all you can make this oil-free.
Papad or papadam
The papad is a thin rolled out lentil cracker that every Indian pantry will store. The lentil flour(urad dal or black gram) is kneaded with oil, baking soda, salt and water. This is rolled thin into circles and left to dry in the sun. The papad made in different regions of India has flavours and flours slightly different. For masala papad we prefer the north Indian variety with cumin or black pepper. To keep this oil-free I prefer to microwave or roast the papad.
The salad topping
A mixed medley of tomato, cucumber and onions with a oil-free lemon-lime dressing that we call kachumber is the go-to one for the masala papad. Here is what I prefer, an oil-free sprout salad with the same lemon-lime dressing. The recipe is given below. If you prefer the Kachumer, click here for the recipe.
The masalas here.
The common masala powders used are chaat masala and chilli powder. Depending in the papad you use you can add roast cumin or pepper powder as well.
The recipe, no doubt is addictive. However be mindful that papad at still is a preserved snack and contains additives, preservatives and salt.
Have no papad?
No worries, roast the rice paper wrapper or fry up some wonton wrappers and continue with the recipe. It will not be exactly the same, yet both these versions have the approval from my kids. Try the papad roasts with curried avocado dip too they make a huge impression on my guests, hope yours will love them too.
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