Kolkata Street Food: JHAL MURI

Jhal Muri means to Kolkata what Bhel means to Mumbai, and even though both are based on puffed rice, they are a world apart in flavour. Between the two, Jhal Muri is easier to put together on a whim, as it does not need three kinds of chutney, and therefore requires less pre-planning than bhel. Apparently, Jhal can mean not just spicy, but also pungent , and this snack gets its jhal from mustard oil, red onions and if you are up for it : fresh green chillies !


Do you remember, Jhumpa Lahiri’s novel, Namesake, where Ashima, craves for Muri in the 70’s US, and has to make do with rice krispies. We are fortunate to get our muri supplies from little Bangladeshi stores here, including Bengali chanachur(a spicy crispy namkeen) and mustard oil. Endowed with these precious resources, muri is something I whip up ever so often, whenever we need a quick, light bite.


Even though I have never been to Kolkata, the Muri we used to have in CR Park, Delhi’s Little Kolkata, was my introduction to this lovely snack. As the sun would go down, the CR park market would get filled with families, each member heading to their favourite snack wallah with Ghugni, chowmein, roll and of course muri being the biggest draws.:P


This is how our favourite "muri bhaiya" used to make it:

Ingredients:
2 cups crisp puffed rice
1 medium red onion, chopped
½ a boiled potato, chopped
A little chanchur, or any spicy crisp Indian mixture-can use sev or bhujiya also
½ tsp bhuna zeera (roasted cumin powder)
Salt to taste
2 fresh green chillies
1 tsp mustard oil : very important-substitute with pickle oil if you don’t have this
Variation: I added half a small, firm tomato, finely diced. This is neither traditional, nor recommended unless the tomato is really firm, as it can turn muri soggy, but since I am very fond of tomatoes and happened to have an exceptionally firm one around, I added it this time.
Optional additions:
Finely chopped fresh coconut pieces
Finely chopped Raw mango
1 tbsp Kala chana, or black gram, soaked overnight
Method
Here’s our own little muri station

Mix the chanachur and salt with the muri (puffed rice)



Add the potato, onion, green chillies and tomato (if using)

Add cumin powder and mustard oil. Mix well and eat as soon as possible.

38 comments:

  1. I am enjoying every bit of this street food! Ooo! Green chillies....

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  2. looks tempting..long time i made bhel..

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  3. dont tell me this..... i made jhal muri just few hours back for eve snack hehehe..:P mine was too simple..urs looks authentic... too good

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  4. Belle... I am not very sure.. but i guess u have to send something from other bloggers blog for the MBP-street food (http://www.monsoonspice.com/2008/05/announcing-mbp-june.html)
    . Just check out the rule once again...:)And talk to sia for clarifications..:D

    ur muri rocks.. I just had some muri that i had left over some the afternoon... u made me crave for more..:P hehehhe
    my tongue is on fire and my nose is leaking.. uhhhhhhhhhhhuuuuuuu

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  5. that looks really tempting..I love bhel..so this should also fall ont he same tempting area!..

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  6. waaaah jhal moori from CR park ... yaar mast memories refresh karte ho ... pata hai we had this jhal moori wale bhaiya in jamshedpur park in front of my house and we used to have a 1 rupee moori every single day ...... golden days....

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  7. Wow i remember once travelling from Kolkata to Murzshidabad , they were selling this.
    And everybody was buying and eating them.
    And me was just drooling as my huuby said don't eve dare to buy it. SO i sat and watched all the other passengers eating.
    This looks so delicious that i am drooling again

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  8. We call this 'mosla(masala) muri' too. Yours is perfect ... down to details of adding coconut pieces. Lip smacking!

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  9. Drooooling! We call it Churmuri, made the same way. Great entry girl!:))

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  10. Hi everyone,
    thanks for the comments..the pungent mustard oil in this one is a real sinus blaster!

    Happy Cook Try it, I bet you wont be disappointed this time !

    sharmila
    no coconut at home:(

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  11. Oh, I am drooling! All street foods are my favs, especially north-indian chaat items. I am enjoying the taste just by looking at your pic :)

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  12. Wish I had a bowlful of that in front of me now... Looks delicious!

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  13. Hi Rashmi....
    This is a very YUM! chat. Looks great. So colorful. Excellent snack for a movie...

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  14. what a fun post! I remember that line in the namesake. I'm craving your jhal muri right now!

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  15. this made my mouth water.....dont remmeber the last time i made it, very near to the sukhi bhel we eat in my part of India...:)

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  16. that looks so mouthwatering.....perfectly done

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  17. Just saw bhelpuri and now jhal muri! How tempting!

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  18. Its called churmuri in kannada
    Looks perfect..

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  19. Oh very tempting entry, bhel is my all time fav street food :))

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  20. Looks good. I make a sort of "chivda" with the dry items. I f I add the veggies, I've got this.
    Great snack idea. Am always on the look out for those.:)

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  21. post kar diya maine finally ... verbal kal dungi .... and haal mere blog mein apke liye kuch hai ... 2 cheezein hai ...

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  22. YUM! Haven't had this in ages because eating on the roads sets my tummy off now and there's no point eating jhalmuri anywhere else. I misse it soooo much...

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  23. Rashmi,
    jhaal muri looks so mouth-watering to me ...we usually had this at evenings ..great one
    hugs and smiles
    jaya

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  24. Hi Delhibelle,
    Visiting ur blog first time u have nice nd lovely blog.....U believe or not I was really drooling seeing the pictures....

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  25. Loved the post and the pics. I would also suggest a pinch of rock salt (beet noon).

    Also, Delhi Belle is an awesome take but Jhaal Muri rarely gives anyone the Delhi Belly :-)

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  26. jhla muri, a mosla muri. khaben naki dada muri ??

    Bapok khete. :D

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  27. A perfect Bengali snack. Hope everybody likes. Thanks Belle for sharing.

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  28. for the sake of this in mumbai i some times travel from navi mumbai to juhu at a place which sells this.they also sell ready mades

    to top this anyone coming from bengal i ask them to carry dilranjan dalmoth for me so that i can make it my home

    you can also add some chaat maasala, peesa dhaniya powder, some red chilly pickle oil.... awesome ingredients

    pls dont put the bhujia sev...strict no no
    regards
    amit

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  29. To both the anonymous commentors, kirti and amit..thanks for your feedback,really appreciate the tips you have given..will try out the variations soon.
    delhibelle

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  30. Made it today and loved it! Thanks for the post :)

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  31. Anon, thanks for trying it. Glad you enjoyed it:)

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  32. i just love jhal muri

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  33. Kolkata formerly known as Calcutta is prominent city in eastern India and the city serves as capital of the Indian state of West Bengal. Kolkata is located in eastern India on the east bank of the River Hooghly. When we say Kolkata that means it also includes the suburbs. The population of the city is 15 million. Kolkata is the third largest city in India and world’s 8th largest agglomeration.shopping kolkata

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  34. jhalmuriiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii

    yummyyyyy

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  35. Any one knows the recipe for red chutney like paste some mudi hawkers use. I remember eating Mudi from Mamu on Ezra street in Badabazaar long long time back.

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  36. one of my fav... one of my uncle lives in kolkata... n i wait for him to come to delhi...he brings lots of pack of muri... feels so good to see so many muri lovers... n green chilly is most imp ingredient.. ankh se aansu na nikale jhal ki wajah se tab tak muri khane ka maja nahi aata...

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