Bhel is a very popular street food, especially in Pune and Mumbai, India. You are sure to find a bhel cart in and around picnic places like parks, beaches, and old forts with hiking trails. It draws a huge crowd of people , and it is with awe that one watches the ‘bhelwala’ mix each bhel to order!
So here in America, I started packing bhel for our summer picnics, with the dry and wet ingredients ready to be mixed on site, and the concept of bhel in a bag was born! So as soon as the weather got warm this year, we headed off to the harbor islands with our favorite picnic menu – bhel in a bag, chutney and cucumber sandwiches, cut watermelon, and corn on the cob!
- Bhel for 4!
- For the bhel mix- In a gallon-sized zip lock bag, combine 1 cup of kurmure/mamra or crisp rice such as Rice Krispies cereal with 1/2 cup chevdo plus 1/2 cup gathia. I combine the tastes of chevdo/chivda and gathia that I like. But you could also use 2 cups of bhel mix available at Indian store.
- I pack about 1/2 cup of thin sev such as the Mirch Masala brand, separately, for topping the bhel just before serving!
- In a quart sized plastic zip lock bag, combine 1 finely diced onion + a big handful of cilantro leaves finely chopped. You may also add a small tomato finely chopped and a small cooked and peeled potato, diced into cubes. To this mixture, add the green (hot) chutney such as Swad brand and the sweet chutney such as the Deep brand (see the pictures in my Chutney and Cucumber Sandwich post) according to your taste. Close the zip lock bag securely and put it in the cooler!
- Once you are at your favorite picnic spot, just pour the contents of the small bag (in big ‘dollops’) into the big gallon sized one, close the big bag and shake it well to combine the bhel!
- Top each serving with some thin sev. Enjoy with the Chutney and Cucumber Sandwiches!!!!! I am taking my bhel in a bag and my picnic basket to Fiesta Friday, hosted by the ever gracious and accomplished Angie and co-hosted this week by the gifted and talented duo, Loretta of Safari of the Mind and Jess of Cooking is my Sport. Do join the party and check out their awe inspiring blogs !