When it comes to snacking, it is often difficult to draw the line, owing to the fact that most of is either spicy, or oily, or both…at least, usually when the snack in question is store-bought. One big step towards assuring quality and health is of course, to replicate it at home which is healthier and saves you the trouble of being dependent on store-bought stuff. Having grown up in Mumbai, I’ve had my share of ‘namkeen’ or savoury tea-time snacks; mixtures made from fried potato slices, sago, poha or flattened rice, cornflakes, and much more. I don’t enjoy spicy mixtures, or ones that are sour or too salty, so this Poha Chivda with its sweet and salty flavour and the aroma of curry leaves, makes it one of my favourite snacks.
This mixture is insanely easy to make. I went a step ahead and made this in the microwave, saving me from the pain of using too much oil. There is not much of a difference in the taste; deep friend poha will puff up and dry roasted or microwaved ones will be crisp without puffing up, not a whole lot of difference. It is best to use the ‘thick’ poha variety for this recipe, but if you’re unable to find those, the ‘thin’ variety would work too. Just roast them for a lesser amount of time. You can even sun-roast them for 2 to 3 hours, no need to use gas 😀
You can add or skip ingredients as per your liking, and make this on the stove-top or microwave, in as much quantity as you like. I’ve skipped adding sliced kopra/dry coconut, as I was out, but you can add if you like. I made a medium-sized batch, because these things seem to get replete very suddenly, in my house 😦
Poha Chivda in the Microwave
- Poha/Flattened rice – 3 cups (the thick variety)
- Peanuts – 1 cup (with skin)
- Chana dal – 1 cup (washed, soaked and softened slightly)
- Curry leaves – 2 sprigs, about 15 to 20 leaves
- Green or Red chilies – 3 or 4, broken
- Asafoetida/Heeng – 1 tsp
- Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
- Turmeric – 1 tsp
- Salt – as per taste
- Sugar – 3 tsp
- Oil – 1 tsp
- In a large microwave-safe glass bowl, take the poha and microwave for 3 mins, in intervals of 1 min, using a spoon or ladle to mix each time.
- After 3 mins, pour it into a different container and keep aside (ensure the container can hold extremely hot stuff 😛 )
- In the same bowl, add the oil and mustard seeds and microwave for 30 seconds.
- Now add the turmeric, asafoetida, chilies, curry leaves, peanuts, chana dal and microwave for 2 minutes.
- Take out, stir and pour the roasted chivda (it will be crispy to touch already).
- Season with salt and sugar, mix well and put it back to microwave for 3 more mins.
- Ensure to stir after every minute, and if you find the chivda slightly brown, stop microwaving. Each oven is different, so keep an eye.
- Let it cool, it will be extremely hot, and then transfer into air-tight containers.
- The mixture will last from 2 weeks to a month, depending on how hungry your folks are 😉