India’s undying love for multifaceted world of pani puri represents possibly the most popular street food in the country.


By Foodie

India is a treasure factory of flavours and glee, known for its rich cultural heritage and various cuisines. One delicacy stands out as an all-time favourite among the wide variety of street cuisines in India: Pani Puri. This tangy, spicy, and completely tempting street food, also known by other names like Golgappas and Phuchaks, has won the hearts and taste buds of countless Indians all over the country. Pani Puri has become an integral part of the Indian cuisine, loved by individuals from all walks of life.

A classic street food treat known as pani puri is made from round, hollow puris (crispy fried dough balls) that are stuffed with a mouth-watering combination of spiced mashed potatoes or chickpeas, tangy mango chutney, and an icy mixture of flavoured water. The flexibility of Pani Puri to adapt and change, not just in flavour but also in its regional name, is what truly sets it apart from other traditional cuisine.

Pani puris are called differently in the other parts of the nation. This dish is versatile in nature, from the busy avenues of Mumbai to the winding alleyways of Delhi and the colourful nooks of Kolkata. It is affectionately referred to as Pani Puri in Mumbai and Golgappas in Delhi. This delectable, flavoured dish is known as a “Phuchka” in Kolkata.

Even though the labels may be different, the basic concept is the same: each bite is a blast of flavour.

The adaptability of Pani Puri is what makes it so exceptional. Indians enjoy experimenting with flavours, and Pani Puri provides the ideal platform for such an attempt.

It is possible to alter the pani, a chilly, sour beverage, to suit personal tastes. Some people like it more intense, while others want it milder. A fresh flip on the classic recipe has also been added by inspired versions including mint-flavored water, hing flavoured water, coriander flavoured water and even pani with a Jaljeera flavour.

Pani Puri, also known as Golgappas or Phuchaks, represents the experimental nature and love for food of the Indians. This classic street food perfectly captivates the nation’s passion for originality and its capacity to turn each taste into a distinctive mouth-watering experience. Don’t miss the opportunity to savour the taste of panipuri.

Here’s a basic recipe for making Pani Puri at home:

Prep time: 17 mins

Cook time: 15 mins

Total time: 32 mins

For the Puris:
– 1 cup semolina (sooji/rava)
– 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (maida)
– Water for kneading the dough
– Oil for deep frying

For the Pani (Spicy Water):
– 1 cup fresh mint leaves
– 1/2 cup fresh coriander leaves
– 2-3 green chilies
– 1-inch piece of ginger
– 1 small lemon, juiced
– 1 teaspoon roasted cumin powder
– 1 teaspoon black salt
– 1/2 teaspoon chaat masala
– Salt to taste
– 4 cups chilled water

For the Filling:
– 2 medium-sized boiled potatoes, peeled and mashed
– 1/2 cup boiled chickpeas (optional)
– Tamarind chutney
– Mint coriander chutney
– Sev (crispy chickpea flour noodles)
– Chopped onions (optional)
– Chopped coriander leaves (optional)

How to make:

1. Puris:
   – In a mixing bowl, combine the semolina and all-purpose flour.
   – Gradually add water and knead the dough until it becomes smooth and stiff.
   – Cover the dough with a damp cloth and let it rest for 15-20 minutes.
   – Divide the dough into small portions and roll them into small circles.
   – Heat oil in a deep pan or kadai over medium heat.
   – Fry the rolled puris one by one until they become crispy and golden brown. Drain excess oil using a slotted spoon and set them aside.

2. Pani (Spicy Water):
   – In a blender, add mint leaves, coriander leaves, green chilies, and ginger. Blend into a smooth paste, adding a little water if needed.
   – Transfer the paste to a large mixing bowl.
   – Add lemon juice, roasted cumin powder, black salt, chaat masala, and regular salt. Mix well.
   – Gradually add chilled water while stirring continuously to make the pani. Adjust the seasoning according to your taste.
   – Refrigerate the pani for at least 1 hour to allow the flavors to blend.

3. Assembly:
   – Take each puri and gently tap the top to create a small hole.
   – Fill the puri with a small amount of mashed potatoes and boiled chickpeas.
   – Add a teaspoon of tamarind chutney and mint coriander chutney into each puri.
   – Dip the filled puri into the prepared pani and quickly pop it into your mouth.
   – You can garnish with sev, chopped onions, and coriander leaves for added flavor and texture.