Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Not Your Ordinary Puffed Rice Cereal

Chivda/Chewda/Chiwda--- not sure what the correct spelling is--- is this great crunchy snack mixture with several different flavors going on at the same time- a lovely combination of hot-sweet-spicy-salty, sometimes name it. Great with afternoon chai (tea) or coffee. I remember whenever we had unexpected guests at home (back then, guests were always unexpected- nobody called!!), my mom would make chai and pour in some chivda into a serving bowl, stick a spoon in, place the chai and the chivda onto a tray and serve it to the guests. She would usually make a good amount of this crunchy snack well in advance and then stock it up in these air-tight containers. Worked out great!

There are many different kinds of chivda and my favorite is the one made with murmura. Murmura is basically puffed rice cereal and here is how I make this great snack. Oh yeah, I am in that stage now- I make a reasonable quantity of the chivda and then stock it up in air tight containers.


Murmura (Puffed Rice Cereal), peanuts, roasted chick peas (roasted chana dal- available at the IGS), salt, oil.

 Murmura or Puffed Rice Cereal in a bag
 Roasted Chana Dal/Chick Peas

I throw in, you don't have to if you don't want to!:

Green Chillies, a couple cloves of garlic- smashed, curry leaves (if lying in my fridge), red chilli powder.


1. I take a huge pot and pour in a few tablespoons of oil. Get the heat going on medium and then add peanuts. Fry them until they start turning brown.
2. At this point, I add some split chick peas followed by a couple green chillies slit lengthwise and a couple cloves of smashed up garlic. Quickly give it one stir- don't want it all to burn! I then turn the heat down to minimum.

The initial frying

3. I then pour in the bag of murmura, followed by salt and red chilli powder. Mix everything up and keep stirring for at least 10 minutes. I keep stirring until my hand literally starts hurting! I then taste it and if it is crunchy enough, I switch off the stove. Done! As easy as that!

 Murmura Chivda Ready!

After the mixture has cooled off, I transfer it into air tight containers.Works out great for those mid-day "oh-I-need-a-snack" moments and of course, when you have guests over. I believe this stuff is pretty healthy too-- I mean, for starters, there's not much grease involved and that is always a plus, right? And it tends to be pretty light on your stomach as well. And then there's nuts!

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