Kachori is a beloved savory Indian food, often sold on the streets. It has a crispy, flaky jacket of wheat wrapping a savory, spicy filling of moong dal. This homemade version make the perfect snack for a cold evening with a cup of hot tea. A vegan, soy-free and nut-free recipe.
It's hard to translate the Hindi word "khasta," often associated with savory Indian snacks, unless you use a combination of terms like, "crispy, crackly, flaky, brittle." But even then, they come short.
If you really want to know what "khasta" tastes and feels and sounds like, you should try a kachori.
Kachoris were popularized around India by the Marwaris, traders from the western Indian state of Rajasthan, who settled across the length and breadth of the country, bringing with them delicious, if often rich and indulgent, foods.
Growing up in diverse Bombay I had a handful of Marwari friends and acquaintances at school and in the neighborhood. But it was while living in Pune for a year that I really learned so much more about the people and food of Marwar. I don't know much about Pune anymore, but back in those days Marwaris, who had lived in the city for generations and ran many of the businesses there, had assimilated easily and effortlessly with the native population. As a result, their foods, like kachori, had also become part of the city's foodscape.
It is easy to see why. This tasty, pot-bellied snack is the best kind of eats there is. Think samosa, but different, and differently delicious.
There are many kinds of kachoris, but this Moong Dal Kachori is the one that's most familiar and easily found across India. Jay loves 'em and is often after me to make them. I try and keep things as healthy as possible around here so I don't often oblige, but how can one resist such deliciousness all the time? And kachoris, although deep-fried, offer some healthy elements, like that incredibly lovely filling of moong dal.
My philosophy with homemade deep-fried foods is to make them occasionally and eat in moderation. If you feel the same way, put these on your list for your next indulgence. You'll be back for more, I promise.
What we love about these kachoris
- They're khasta--I just told you what that means.