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Chat Masala

Chat Masala

An Introduction
Chaat masala is a blend of several spices like amchoor (dried mango powder), cumin, black salt, coriander, dried ginger, salt, black pepper, asafoetida, red pepper, etc., used as an accompaniment to fresh fruits and other snacks. It has a sharp smell and tastes sweet, sour and pungent. In western countries, fresh fruit often is sprinkled with lime juice and chat masala. The ingredients are combined and served on a small metal plate or a banana leaf, dried and formed into a bowl, at chaat carts in India.

In India, this blend of spices is widely used as a flavouring agent to add a kick in snacks, savouries,

fruit salads and many other items. Chat masala is used to flavour all the popular street foods of India ranging from Bhel Puri to the Golgappa, Aloo Chaat and Dahi Sev Puri. It is somewhat an acquired taste and can be added to all sorts of everyday items or even eaten on its own.

Although chat masala is available in commercial packaging, many people still prefer home made chat masala to the commercially prepared version. Ready and processed chaat masala is now available all around the world in specialty Indian and Asian grocery stores.

What Exactly is Chat Masala?
Chat Masala is made from the two Hindi words ‘chat’ and ‘masala’. Chat means to lick and the word masala means a spice mix. Therefore, the word chat is used for a collection of savoury and highly spicy snacks that would make you lick /smack your lips.

Ingredients of Chat Masala
The following are the main ingredients of chat masala:
  • Cummin Seeds
  • Peppercorns
  • Black Salt
  • Dried Mint Leaves
  • Fenugreek
  • Green Cardamoms
  • Cloves
  • Ajwain (Carom Seeds or Bishop’s Weed)
  • Asafoetida
  • Mace Powder     * Amchur (Dried Mango Powder)
  • Dry Ginger Powder
  • Chilly Powder.

Uses of Chat Masala
Chat Masala, the blend of hot and tangy spices, is used to spice up many dishes. They are the inseparable part of appetizing savories which are served before a meal as light dishes for lunch or supper. It is widely used to add delicacy in:

  • Snacks
  • Salads
  • Fruit Salads
  • Fruit Juices
  • Some Curries.