Chakli, a favorite snack from Maharashtra and Southern India is enjoyed by everyone across India. Each and everybody has their own method of preparing this crunchy snack and the end result is a delicious product. I remember the days when I was in India and we would prepare chaklis every Diwali. Being surrounded by neighbors that were Maharashtrians and South Indians, we tried a different recipe every time expecting to have the best chaklis to eat and distribute. So each year we used a borrowed recipe and made this snack. Sometimes they turned out good and other times they were crispy on the outside and kind of soggy on the inside.
I have been in the United States for a very long time and I had a hard time finding good Chaklis here in Ohio. The craving was so much that I had to work on a recipe that would be easy for me. It took me quite some time to make up this recipe. Each year I added and omitted ingredients to make changes. I finally came up with a recipe for Chakli that was easy and the ingredients were readily available. All the ingredients that I have used in this recipe are regular kitchen pantry ingredients.
I make this snack for my son every year. Chaklis are his favorite snack and he says they are Chakris. The word Chakri actually comes from the word chakra (a Sanskrit word) which means a circle that turns around (like a wheel). My son is such a picky eater and it is hard for me to think of something for his evening snack and often I ask him should I make some Chakris. His reply is Chakris should be made only during Diwali time that’s when they taste like Chakris.
Even though it is not a Sindhi recipe it is a favorite snack of my family. Often when I take this snack for a Diwali party, I notice people eating the crumbs too. Diwali is being celebrated this week and so here is a my version, recipe of Chakli, a snack that not only my son likes very much but pretty much loved by others too…
· 2½ cups Rice Flour
· 1 ½ cups Besan (Gram Flour)
· 1 stick unsalted butter
· ½ Tsp Red Chili Powder
· ½ Tsp Jeera(Cumin Seeds)
· 1Heaped Tbsp White Til (Sesame Seeds)
· 2 cups Boiling Water
· Oil for frying
· Chakli Press/Maker
· Salt to Taste
Note: 1) If unsalted butter is not available please use salt accordingly.
2) If you are going to use Indian butter then use quarter of the 500gm package and go easy on the salt.
· Mix rice flour and besan. Sift and keep aside.
· In a pan heat 2½ cups of water. Bring to boil and reduce to 2 cups.
· Then add salt according to your taste into this pot of boiling water.
· Turn heat off and add butter, red chili powder, til, Jeera and the sifted flours.
· Cover pot and let it stand for about 10-12 mins. Do not stir or do anything.
· Open the covered pot and mix all the ingredients and form soft dough. Knead the dough for a few minutes.
· Rub some oil on the inside of the chakli press. Take a ball about the size of a large orange and fill into the chakli press.
· On a wax paper make round chaklis by pressing out the dough. Form it into round swirls starting from inside going out giving it the chakli shape.(This step requires some practice to get the perfect shape)
· Heat the oil in a kadai/frying pan. Gently slide the chaklis in hot oil and deep fry until golden brown in color. Drain and let cool.
· When cooled to room temperature, store in airtight containers.
· Enjoy Chaklis during Diwali or anytime.
Keep it simple, keep it Sindhi.
WISHING YOU ALL A VERY HAPPY DIWALI AND A PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR