These days I am looking for such ideas of how to have salads with the same liking of having chaats. Honestly, for health reasons I have to have these. Otherwise, the rice loving me can have rice for all meals of the day. The good old days are long gone. While going to school, back from school, at dinner, the typical Bengali, plump little girl would have rice, chapatis were not so favourite. She was never bothered about her plump, her pimples, using vicco turmeric to look attractive.... her only demand was food n Anandamela, Shuktara, Desh. She still remembers those golden moments.... just back from school... sitting at the balcony with her story books, while mom feeding her favourite rice and fish.
Now this boiled yellow peas chaat is attached with a severe nostalgia. We used to call it sheddo matar makha.... it was not found much in Kolkata.... it was typical of a small township of Krishnanagar, some 100 km away from Kolkata. It was my maternal grandfather's place, I was born there, spent my childhood there, immensely pampered by my uncles n aunts. During Durgapuja we used to be there. Dadu[grandfather] used to hire rickshaws for all of us to do a puja parikrama[visiting puja venues throughout the city]. That joy of enjoying and sharing together has lost somehow down the line but I strongly believe the bond is still there.This matar chaat was sold outside Krishnanagar Rajbari....many of you know about Raja Krishna Chandra Ray. After watching the beautiful puja rituals there, I had to have this chaat. A poor vendor selling it on top of an aluminium box with a 'kupi'[lamp] aside.How I managed eating it sitting on the rickshaw is a different story. I thought let me revive it giving it a healthier salad like look... for the convenience of all.
Let us do it.
Yellow Peas : 100gm
Onion : 1small
Cucumber : 1small
Tomato : 1small
Green Chilli : 1
Coriander Leaves : 1sprig
Black Salt : As required[alternatively salt]
Chaat Masala : 1tsp
Lemon Juice : 1tbsp
Wash and soak the yellow peas overnight. Pour them in pressure cooker with enough water.
Pressure cook at low heat up to 2 whistles. Let cool. Drain the water and transfer to a bowl.
Chop and wash coriander leaves, green chilli, tomato, onion and cucumber. Add to the boiled peas.
Add chaat masala, lemon juice, salt and toss well.
Have it fresh. Serves as a very healthy lunch alternative.... filling and tasty.