Desi Bihari Bhel


Hello, and welcome to my cooking corner again. Today I am going to make Desi Bhel’, a rustic Bihari snack which is easy and funky to make in the evenings or anytime. It is not an elaborate recipe and requires not many ingredients. I usually try to showcase those recipes which are simply made from readily available ingredients. It is called a ‘poor man’s snack’ in the rural areas of Bihar and can be made in a jiffy. It is a crunchy, curried snack that is very interesting to prepare and can be made more so by adding the garnishing ingredients to it. This can be made with any lentil or a combination of them but it should be spicy to eat. To serve this bhel, we firstly make the dal fritters and then we curry them or pour the gravy over the fritters. Then we add the garnish of puffed rice, finely chopped onions, green chilies, tamarind juice, green chutney over it and serve. So let’s start with the recipe—

For the dal fritters:

  1. Chana Dal-250 gms
  2. Onion- 1
  3. Dry Red Chillies-3
  4. Cumin-1/2 tsp
  5. Salt-According to taste

For the gravy:-

  1. Onion-1
  2. Ginger Garlic Paste-1 tsp
  3. Turmeric Powder-1/2 tsp
  4. Coriander Powder-1 tsp
  5. Red Chilly Powder-1 tsp
  6. Garam Masala-1 tsp
  7. Dry Mango Powder-1 tsp
  8. Salt-According to taste
  9. Oil-2 tbsp
  10. Water-As needed

For the serving:-

  1. Puffed Rice (Murmura)-100 gms
  2. Onion-1(finely chopped)
  3. Green Chillies-2
  4. Green Chutney-1 tsp
  5. Tamarind Juice-1 tsp
  6. Chopped cilantro- For garnish(optional)
  7. Besan Sev-For garnish(optional)


Step 1

20191031_003502.jpgWash and soak the chana dal for 6 hours. Chop the onion and green chilies finely. Now rinse the dal and grind it coarsely. Mix in chopped onion, dry red chilies, cumin, and salt. Soak tamarind in water. Mash the pulp in it to get a slightly thick juice of it. Add some black salt in it. Mix and keep aside. This will be used at the time of the final serving of our bhel as a garnish.

Step 2

Take a pan and add oil in it. Spread it around in the pan with  brush. Now make small balls from the batter and shallow fry in the pan. Take out and drain on tissue paper.

Step 3

Now to make the desi gravy of the bhel, take a pan and add oil in it. Add some finely chopped onions and green chilies. Fry for two minutes. Next add ginger garlic paste and the spices, turmeric powder, red chilly powder, coriander powder,garam masala, dry mango powder, and salt. Fry till done. Lastly, add water for a thick gravy. Simmer for five minutes before switching off the gas.

Step 4

To assemble our desi bhel, take a bowl and place the fritters in it. Now pour the gravy we just made over and around the fritters. Pour tamarind juice. Garnish with finely chopped onion, green chilies, and some green chutney. You can add some besan sev or freshly chopped cilantro over it too though it is optional.

20191031_003437.jpgOur DESI BHEL is done, ready to be served. Generally, it is had as a snack with some hot tea.

Friends do try the recipe at home. Share your comments and feedback. Have a great week everyone. Till then healthy cooking, happy living!!!



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Abha's Recipes

Hi! I am Abha Jha and I welcome you all heartily to my blog. Cooking has been my passion for the better part of my life. I was brought up knowing the traditional Indian style of cooking from my ancestral home. I wish to pass on this treasure trove of delightful, easy and yummy recipes to foodies and budding chefs alike. I also love experimenting with food and discovering world cuisine. I wish to keep discovering amazing new recipe's and showcasing them with the world.

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