Thursday, 24 November 2011

THONGA JHAL MURI (INDIAN STREET FOOD - SAVOURY PUFFED RICE IN PAPER CONES)

Jhal Muri is a popular street food in West Bengal, an eastern state of India. It is a great snack food – light, healthy and quick to fix and bursting with flavoursspicy, tangy, crispy, crunchy & punchy. Jhal Muri is to a Bengali what Bhel Puri is to a Mumbaikar; only that the seasonings differ. 


Now, that I have introduced you to the dish, here is a detailed ‘break up’ on the dish. Thonga means the paper cone, in which this dish is handed out by the street vendor, Jhal in Bangla means ‘spicy’ and Muri is of course the puffed rice. Puffed rice is known by many other names such as phuliyan (in Punjabi) which translates into 'puffed ones' and a few other names are- murmure, kurmura, chirmure, etc.

This snack food is meant to be spicy and traditionally demands the use of green chillies only which lend it the heat or the ‘jhal’. The addition of a dash of lemon makes it tangy and the sprouted mung dal & Bengal grams along with roasted peanuts add the crunchiness to the crispy puffed rice. I had used the word punchy in my introduction of the dish coz this dish is incomplete without a drizzle of mustard oil which gives it a punch or some would say pungent flavour and is the soul of this dish.

There is no such thing as 'recipe' about this dish. Play around with the amount of ingredients along with the Muri. The only negative feature about this dish is perhaps the fact that you need to eat it as soon as you assemble it otherwise, the lemon juice, the oil and onion will make the puffed rice soggy. I have seen people using tomato in their Jhal Muri but I would advice against it coz it will make the puffed rice become soggy even faster!

The amount of ingredients mentioned here is what my family and I enjoy in our Jhal Muri. Please adjust them to suit your taste; spicier or milder – take your call J

2 cups puffed rice
2 tsp lemon juice
2 tbsp heaped onion
½ tsp cumin powder
¼ tsp black salt
3-4 crushed papdi (savoury fried crisps) – optional
1 medium sized potato (diced) – I did not add it coz my family does not like its addition to their Muri
1½ tbsp roasted peanuts
2 tbsp mung dal & Bengal grams – (I didn’t wait for them to sprout)
1 green chilli (finely chopped) – mine was very hot so I used less
1 tsp scant Chaat Masala (which is available in Indian grocery stores)
A handful of Sev (use any type that fancies you- available in Indian grocery stores)
A handful of Green coriander, finely chopped
1 ½ tsp Mustard oil

For Garnish:
Juliennes of fresh coconut (optional)
Juliennes of green mango (optional)

Mix together all the ingredients except the lemon juice and mustard oil. Adjust these flavours. Garnish with coconut and mango juliennes (I am not very fond of very sour foods so I avoid the raw green mango) and serve immediately...my favourite is ASAP. Enjoy!

Serves- 4
Note: Mustard oil can be substituted with sour pickle oil. In that case you need to be careful with the amount lemon juice. 

Thanks for visiting and hoping to seeing you again!


Sent post to the YBR hosted by Spicie Foodie

35 comments:

  1. Looks really tasty! Have a Happy Thanksgiving :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks and a Happy Thanksgiving to you too :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Woe this looks really interesting! I'm going to India in December and will be on the look out for this!

    Gorgeous photography as always :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. I'm a street food addict, this looks just great.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Wow, this looks like a fantastic snack!! I really like the photo with all the food and labels... great idea. :) I wanted to mention that you have an award at my blog dated 11-22 (Cranberry Chutney post). :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Aaww! Thanks Ramona...My first every award! Its lovely to receive it from an amazing blogger like you :-D

    ReplyDelete
  7. so nice to see the recipe of my favourite bengali street food JHAL MURI!!! Loved this. Following your blog as well!

    ReplyDelete
  8. this looks delicious! I love all of the many, many flavors, textures, and color. Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hey, thks for introducing us to this recipe. Love the presentation! I could snack it all in front of a TV :)

    Dropping by from Shirley's Luxury Haven.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I adore street food, and this looks like it makes for great snacking. I love that there is puffed rice in the ingredients - I imagine it makes for an interesting texture.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I love street food, it's often difficult to get just right but I must try this. GG

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wonderful ! Love the way you present this too - it sounds so flavorful and delicious :)
    Mary x

    ReplyDelete
  13. Gosh, so much still to learn thanks to you. I really need to get to India to experience it all. Thank you so much for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  14. oh love your ingredients photo with the shadow casting over it.
    I'm so excited.. I've seen on videos of how the rice is puffed by quickly stirring with high heated sand in a cooking wok. I want to try to do this at home, but can't seem to find sand.. do you know how to puff rice at home, besides deep frying them?

    ReplyDelete
  15. Your website has a nice variety. I will try this recipe. I have never heard of this before.

    ReplyDelete
  16. oh wow! I love all these photos- everything looks so good!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Now this is my kind of street food! Spicy, healthy, light but filling enough. Thanks for sharing can't wait to try this out.

    ReplyDelete
  18. What a fancy street food and it looks a lot healthier than the one we can get here from a restaurant... LOL. This looks like a fan and delicious food!

    ReplyDelete
  19. @Shannon- I have never tried making rice puff at home but you can check out this site and see if it helps. http://www.ehow.com/how_8289093_puff-rice-home.html

    ReplyDelete
  20. Thanks so much everyone...this street food is definitely healthy and delicious :)

    ReplyDelete
  21. Yummy snack looks fabulous following you on google friends

    ReplyDelete
  22. That is one delicious jhal muri. I remember tasting it the very first time after marriage and instantaneously hooked ever since :D

    ReplyDelete
  23. Good job dude!! But just a small hitch is that West Bengal is not a western but eastern state of India.Should have been more careful about Geography.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. OOOOPS!! What a major slip up there! Thanks Partha for bringing it to my notice :) Have corrected it.

      Delete
  24. Nice post! Very well explained.

    ReplyDelete
  25. My ultra-popular recipe is different -
    (1) Avoid moist ingredients. Coarsely chopped onions must be patted dry.
    (2) Very lightly coat puffed rice with mustard oil.
    (3) Toss everything else together, then
    (4) Smoothly fold into the puffed rice; its oil coating will protect the crispiness.
    (5) Serve at once. Bad, boiled tea goes well with this salad.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Roy! Thanks for visiting and leaving your thoughts.

      Delete
  26. Great information about spicy snacks.Thanks for sharing.Here I would like to introduce Delights of India,which is a directory to buy Indian snacks.

    ReplyDelete
  27. great works, but its look so simple to cooking.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes! That is the beauty of this dish...simple to make and yummy to eat!

      Delete
  28. Wow! Lovely recipe.. Will try this soon :-)

    ReplyDelete
  29. I thіnk that is one οf the most important іnfoгmation fοг me.
    And і аm sаtіѕfіed гeading your article.
    However wаnnа statement on sοme normal thіngs,
    The site taste is great, thhe articles is truly nice : D.
    Just right job, cheeгs

    Αlso visit my wеb blоg :: Theme Forest

    ReplyDelete

IT IS ALWAYS ENCOURAGING TO HEAR FROM FRIENDS AND READERS. I CAN ALSO BE REACHED AT: easyfoodsmith@gmail.com