I love to snack in the evenings and at times between breakfast and lunch. Many a time it is something rich and indulgent but most of the times it is fruit and dried fruits and nuts. I almost always make sure that there are savoury Indian snacks like spiced puffed (murmura) and flat (poha) rice as much as there are cookies in my jars.
The latest addition to my list of snacks is this savoury roasted wonder which I almost can’t do without these days. Hari loves it too so its a great, healthy snack for kids and grownups alike. I call it the Indian version of pop corn.
Popularly known as “Makhana” in India, Euryale ferox or fox nut is native to eastern Asia and Russia. It might interest you to know that the Chinese have been growing this for over 3,000 years and is used in Chinese medicine. In certain cultures it is also considered as an auspicious offering to the lord in religious ceremonies. Grown in the stagnant waters of wetlands, tanks, ponds and lakes, it is naturally organic too. Besides, it is nutritionally dense, loaded with calcium, phosphorous, kerotine, iron, zinc, and vitamin B.
This snack is very easy to make and stays fresh for upto 2 weeks or more in an air tight container. It is puffed, light and when roasted and spiced adequately it can become crunchy and zingy too! It has become one of my favourite snacks at home and also when I travel. Getting stuck in Mumbai traffic is nightmarish, but snacks like these and some good music come to rescue the weary traveller!
Roasted Foxnuts Or Makhana (A Savoury Snack) Recipe
2 tbsp ghee or oil
3/4 tsp red chilli powder or to taste
1 1/4 tsp kala namak or rock salt (or use regular salt)
125 gm (8 cups)fox nuts or makhana
freshly ground pepper
In a large wok or kadhai, heat the ghee over a medium flame. When it melts, lower the flame and put in the red chilli powder and salt. Quickly toss in the makhana before the chilli begins to burn and mix well. Add in some freshly ground pepper and roast over low heat until the nuts are crispy, about ten minutes.
Store in air tight containers and enjoy as a snack!
Makes 8 cups