Chaats / Street Eats From Bombay
What is CHAAT?
In Hindi, “Chaat” literally means to lick.
“Chaat” is a generic term for a huge array of Street Eats from various parts of India. In fact, these street eats are so delicious that you end up licking your fingers. These dishes are mostly served from small street-side stalls in most big cities in India. Cities like Bombay, Delhi, Indore, and Kolkata have street after street dedicated to these roadside stalls. Each stall is independently owned and specializes in a certain type of dish.
Bombay or Mumbai is especially famous for its Chaats or Street Eats. Like everything, Bombay brings its own flair to these dishes too. You will be surprised to find the same dish served two different ways on the same street, each delicious in its own way. Over decades, these dishes have found popularity in neighboring countries like Pakistan, Nepal, and Bangladesh as well.
At Bombay Food Junkies, we have taken a selection of these street eats and given it a little twist to make it our own. Hope you enjoy your journey into the streets of Bombay via our food.
Falooda: Like a Kiss From the Chef
Falooda has its origins from a Persian Dessert called ‘Faloodeh’. This dessert is made with a rose flavored milk mixed with basil seeds, noodles and nuts.
Falooda has very unique and one of a kind ingredients that compliment each other in very unexpected ways. Basil seeds provide the crunch and healthy plant fibres that help your gut. Rose syrup adds anti-inflammatory properties to the drink. The noodles and nuts give a well rounded flavor profile to this unique drink.
At BFJ, we use our OATLY soft serve mixed with the best quality rose syrup to create the base for this drink. We top it will basil seeds, corn noodles and tutti fruit (dried fruit bits) along with some cashews and dried rose petals.
Flavor Profile: Sweet with a flowery rose flavor.
Vegan Chik'n Tikka
(As per Wikipedia) Chicken tikka is a chicken dish originating in the Indian subcontinent during the Mughal era. The dish is popular in India, Bangladesh and Pakistan.
It is traditionally small pieces of boneless chicken baked using skewers over charcoal after marinating in Indian spices and yogurt — essentially a boneless version of tandoori chicken. The word tikka (Tike in Turkish, and Tikə in Azerbaijani) is a Persian word, meaning "bits" or "pieces".
At Bombay Food Junkies, we replaced all animal products with vegan alternatives. We use plant-based chicken marinated in cashew-based yogurt mixed with authentic spices, bell peppers and onions. You can enjoy this delicacy as a bowl or a wrap topped with our plant-based mint sauce.
Vada Pav: The Undisputed King of Bombay Street Food
For folks in Bombay, Vada Pav is not just food, it’s a way of life! This is quintessentially a complete meal for millions of folks in Bombay. Vada Pav is to Bombay; what Hot Dog is to New York.
At BFJ, we hand make the spiced potato patty (vada) and batter fry it golden brown. We sandwich this patty in a vegan bun (pav), and sprinkle some made from scratch Peanut Garlic Chutney powder. A fried green chilly and a side of fries accompany two Vada Pavs. Enjoy this with our sweet tamarind date or spicy green chili-ginger chutneys.
Flavor Profile: Medium Spicy. Pair it with our sweet brown Tamarind-Date Chutney for a perfect balance of flavor.
Pav Bhaji: A Heart-Warming Stew
Keep calm and eat Pav Bhaji! Pav Bhaji is a street dish originated in Bombay and spread to the rest of India. It’s a mildly spicy mixture of well-cooked vegetables (bhaji) pan-fried with lots of butter and served with a side of two buttery buns (pav). A healthy topping of finely chopped onion, cilantro and a wedge of lime makes this dish stand out from the crowd.
At BFJ, we use the same blend of fresh spices used by the street vendors in India and cook this stew to perfection. The vegetables that make this stew are tomatoes, potatoes, sweet peas and green peppers. We use plant-based butter to bring about the same richness and taste profile as the regular butter. The buns accompanying this dish are artisan bread made specially for us using our recipe. These buns are toasted golden brown with Garlic Butter.
Flavor Profile: Mildly Spicy with undertones of garlic, tomatoes and onions. Best eaten by dipping the Garlic Bun.
Bhel: A Yummy Beach Snack
Bhel is one of the most famous and oldest “Chaat” that originated in Bombay. It mainly consists of puffed rice mixed with assortments of vegetables and tangy/spicy chutneys. Every city in India has a different way of preparing this dish.
At BFJ, we take the best quality puffed rice (made from Long Grain Basmati Rice), boiled potatoes, finely chopped onions, raw mango, crunchy wheat crackers, mix them with our house blended chutney (made from tamarind, dates, garlic and chillies). Once well mixed, we top it off with some red chilli powder for a slightly spicy kick, freshly chopped cilantro and
thin chic-pea flour noodles (also called SEV).
Flavor Profile: Crunchy and little bit on the tangy and sweet side. Add some of our house made Green Chutney to spice it up.
Sev Puri: A Perfect Chaat to Share
Sev Puri can be devoured any time of the day! And that’s a Fact! Sev is the thin chic pea noodles on top, Puri is the wheat cracket used as a base. Between the Puri and the Sev lies a magical mix of flavors.
When you order Sev Puri at BFJ, we start with 8 wheat crackers, top them with boiled potatoes and onions. Sprinkle our house-made spice blend, sweet-spicy chutneys. We complete the dish with a generous sprinkling of Sev (crispy chic pea noodles), freshly chopped cilantro, raw mango, and a little sprinkling of red chilli powder (and pomegranate seeds if in season)
Flavor Profile: Crunchy, Soft, Sweet, Sour and Spicy all flavors come together nicely in this dish.
Paani Puri: A Comfort Snack with a Minty Kick
Paani puri occupies a special place in everyone's hearts! Your Chaat experience is incomplete if you have not tried the Paani Puri. Paani simply means Water; Puri on the other hand is the round hollow lentil balls.
Paani Puri is like a comforting hug and a bomb of flavors at the same time. A crispy hollow ball made of semolina or wheat, filled with spicy potatoes and chic peas. Fill all the space in the ball with our Mint Water and add a dash (or more) of our tamarind-date chutney. Put the whole thing in your mouth and experience a blast of flavors.
At BFJ, we take pride in making the best Minty Water from fresh home grown Mint mixed with ginger, black salt, green chillies and other spices. You will get 10 flavor bombs as we like to call them with a generous side of spiced potatoes and chic peas. An unlimited supply of mint water and tamarind chutney. Some folks drink the mint water like there is no tomorrow (and we don’t mind one bit)
Flavor Profile: Crunchy from outside, cold and soft from inside with a flavors of mint and tamarind complimenting each other nicely. You can adjust the proportion of mint water and tamarind chutney to suit your taste. We recommend starting with 50:50.
Kachori Chaat: Yogurt Makes Everything Better!
Kachori Chaat; think of this as the King Kong version of Paani Puri. Kachori is made by frying a ball of flour which is filled with spices. The puffed up ball is then broken from the top and filled with assortment of vegetables and sauces. It is topped with different things based on the region its served in. The heavenly sensation it provides when it completely dissolves in your mouth is something that keeps folks coming back for more.
At BFJ, we start with a hand-made warm and flaky Kachori. We break open the top and fill it with boiled potatoes, chic peas and onions. We pour our made from scratch organic Soy yogurt (that’s slightly sweetened) on top, splash of our mint-tamarind chutneys, house-made spice blend, chic pea noodles, fresh cilantro and pomegranate seeds for a sweet crunch.
Flavor Profile: Crunchy on the outside, Soft on the inside. Warm Kachori complemented with cold-sweet yogurt and chutneys. A little sweet and tangy.
Dahi Papdi Chaat : A Bowl of Happiness Personified
Dahi Papdi Chaat is a lip-smacking snack that will steal your heart if you enjoy tangy snacks. Have it once, and you would want it again and again. It’s also easy to share; so we say Divide and Conquer (or Share the Love).
Traditionally, made with Papdis (wheat crackers), dahi (yogurt) and assorted vegetables topped with spicy-tangy chutneys. When you order one at BFJ, we start with crispy wheat crackers, then add boiled potatoes, chic peas, and onions. We top it up with our home-made organic soy yogurt along with some sweet-tangy chutneys. We finish the dish with chic-pea noodles, freshly chopped cilantro, spice blend and pomegranate seeds.
Flavor Profile: Crunchy Crackers with soft bite of potatoes and chic peas. Sweet cold yogurt compliments the tangy chutneys. Can be requested spicier.
Samosa Chole: A Perfect Partnership of the Two Heavy Weights
Food is fuel! Why not fuel your body with healthy Chic-Pea Curry (Chole) full of Protein, Fiber and other nutrients along with yummy air fried samosas? Samosas are triangular pastries that are filled with peas, potatoes and spices. We air fry ours to reduce their calorie content and get them extra crunchy. Chole is made by cooking chic peas with a sauce made from Onion, tomatoes and authentic spices.
At BFJ, Samosa Chole combines all of the best aspects of Indian cuisine! We take two crispy air-fried samosas, top them with a big scoop of Chole (Chic Pea Curry) tangy-spicy chutneys, chopped onions, fresh cilantro and spice blend.
Flavor Profile: Medium Spicy, with tangy notes from Tamarind Chutney. Can be made spicier or milder.
Chinese Bhel : A Crunchy Bowl with Sweet and Spicy Flavors
This simple snack has such a powerful flavor that you'll be craving more! Chinese Bhel is a perfect marriage of Indian Street food and Chinese flavors. Its got the goodness of fresh veggies accompanied by the crunch of fried noodles.
When you order the Chinese Bhel at BFJ, we start with thin-julienned fresh cabbage, shredded carrots, onion slices, and fried noodles. We mix them with our house-blend sweet chili-garlic sauce and top them with a hearty amount of fresh spring onions.
Flavor Profile: Crunchy bite from all the fresh veggies, sweet and spicy from the Chilli Garlic Sauces