Chaat or chat (ISO: ; Hindi: चाट; Urdu: چاٹ; Punjabi: ਚਾਟ; Odia: ଚାଟ୍; Bengali: চাট) is a savoury snack that originated in India, typically served as an hors d'oeuvre at roadside tracks from stalls or food carts across the Indian subcontinent in India, Pakistan, Nepal, and Bangladesh. With its origins in Uttar Pradesh, India, chaat has become immensely popular in the rest of the Indian subcontinent. The word derives from Hindi ''cāṭ'' चाट (tasting, a delicacy), from ''cāṭnā'' चाटना (to lick, as in licking ones fingers while eating), from Prakrit ''caṭṭei'' चट्टेइ (to devour with relish, eat noisily).Oxford English Dictionary. ''Chaat''. Mar. 2005 Online edition. Retrieved 18 February 2008.


The chaat variants are all based on fried dough, with various other ingredients. The original chaat is a mixture of potato pieces, crisp fried bread dahi vada or dahi bhalla, gram or chickpeas and tangy-salty spices, with sour Indian chili and saunth (dried ginger and tamarind sauce), fresh green coriander leaves and yogurt for garnish, but other popular variants included aloo tikkis or samosa (garnished with onion, coriander, hot spices and a dash of curd), bhel puri, dahi puri, panipuri, dahi vada, papri chaat, and sev puri. There are common elements among these variants including dahi (yogurt); chopped onions and coriander; sev (thin dried yellow salty noodles); and chaat masala, typically consisting of amchoor (dried mango powder), cumin, kala namak (Himalayan black rock salt), coriander, dried ginger, salt, black pepper, and red pepper. The ingredients are combined and served on a small metal plate or a banana leaf, dried and formed into a bowl.


Some scholars trace origins of chaats such as Dahi Vada (Dahi Bare) to ancient periods. A recipe for dahi wada (as ''kshiravata'') is mentioned in ''Manasollasa'', a 12th-century Sanskrit encyclopedia compiled by Someshvara III, who ruled from present-day Karnataka. According to food historian, K.T Achaya descriptions of dahi vada also appear in literature from 500 B.C. According to culinary anthropologist Kurush Dalal, the Chaat originated in northern India (now Uttar Pradesh) in the late 17th century during the reign of Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan. He further added that the royal doctors had asked the people of Mughal capital Delhi to consume spicy and fried snacks as well as dahi as a countermeasure to the alkaline water of Yamuna river of the city so the Chaat was invented. Most chaats originated in some parts of Uttar Pradesh in India, but they are now eaten all across the Indian subcontinent and neighboring countries. Some are results of cultural syncretism - for instance, pav bhaji (bread/bun with cooked and mashed vegetables) originated in Mumbai but reflects a Portuguese influence, in the form of a bun, and bhel puri and sevpuri, which originated in Mumbai, Maharashtra.


In cities where chaat is popular, there are popular chaathouses or ''dhabas'', such as Mumbai's Chowpatty Beach. The chaat specialities vary from city to city. Chaat from Delhi (from where it originated in its current form), Lucknow, Prayagraj, Kolhapur, Varanasi, Pune, Agra, Meerut, Kolkata,Bengaluru, and Mathura are famous throughout India. In Hyderabad, chaat is mostly prepared by vendors hailing from Bihar, and is different in taste.

Types of chaat

thumb|A plate of Masala poori made by street vendors in the chaat stalls near Bangalore * Aloo chaat - Potatoes (''aloo'' in Hindi) cut into small pieces, fried till crisp and served with chutney * Aloo tikki * Bedmi - Puri stuffed with dal and fried till crisp. Typically served with aloo sabji and eaten for breakfast * Bhalla/aloo tikki * Bhelpuri * Ragda patties (Aloo Tikki Chaat) * Cheela- Besan (chickpea flour) pancakes served with chutney and sooth (sweet chutney) * Chotpoti, mixture of boiled diced potatoes, boiled chickpeas and sliced onions and chillies with grated eggs on top. Many kinds of roasted spice powder are used in its preparation. * Dahi puri * Dahi vada * Kachori- or Kachauri, with variants such as Khasta Kachuari * Mangode - Similar to pakora, but besan paste is replaced with yellow moong paste * Pakora - Different things such as paneer, vegetable dipped in besan (chickpea/gram flour) paste and fried. * Masalapuri * Chana chaat * Papri chaat - This contains fried patty called papri as an extra ingredient. * Samosa chaat - samosa is broken into pieces with green and sweet chutney added to it. * Sevpuri * Pav bhaji * Pav vada * Dahi bhallay ki chaat (bhallay, potatoes, chickpeas, imli chutney, chaat masala, onions, tomatoes, curd (Dahi) etc.) * Beetroot & potato chaat * Dhaka chaat * Paneer chaat puri * Thattu Vadai Set *Dal ki chaat - Made with moong dal mixed with spices and chutney and accompanied with wheat biscuits. Popular in Meerut *Raj kachori - a big hollow ball made with wheat and filled with sprouts, chickpeas, potatoes, bhalla and chutneys. *Basket chat - Edible bowl made with potato and filled with sprouts, chickpeas, potato and chutneys . Popular in Lucknow *Daulat ki chat - A sweet preparation made from keeping condensed milk in winter mist. *Ram ladoo - Round fitters made from mong dal and served with raddish and grey chutney. *Dabeli - a sweet and sour burger like Gujrati snack made with potatoes, sev and pomegranate

See also

* List of Indian snack foods * List of tapas (Spanish snacks) * * Indore


External links

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