Sev Usal (Usal Paav) - A Chaat Dish

"Chaats", the spicy, tasty, crunchy snacks that are served in most Indian restaurants are available in several forms and flavors, and the one word that I can use to describe them is "mouth-watering"!!! One such variation is the Sev Usal, which is traditionally a Maharashtrian dish, but famous is most of the western part of India. It consists of a "Ragda" or gravy made of dried green peas, topped with Sev (kind of like hard noodles made of chick-pea flour), several sauces to bring in the spicy, tangy, sweet and garlicky flavor, and garnished with onions and coriander!! It can be relished as it is, or eaten with bread or "paav". This is a classic way of consuming pulses, and can be made quickly. Sev-Usal or Usal-Paav has long been a favourite road-side snack in India, and is equally delicious when you make it in your kitchen!

4 cups dried green peas (green vatana)
4 tbsp tamarind paste
3 tsp cumin seeds
3 tsp mustard seeds
2 green chillies - chopped
2 tsp turmeric powder
salt - to taste
3 tbsp sugar (or jaggery)
2 tbsp lemon juice (optional, add to taste)
2 tbsp red chilli powder
2 tsp garam masala powder
3 tbsp oil
1/2 cup chopped coriander

1 cup coriander - chopped
1/2 cup onions - chopped
2 cups thick Sev (you can find it easily at an Indian store)
Red Garlic chutney - to taste
Green Coriander chutney - to taste
Date-Tamarind sweet chutney - to taste

Soak the dried green peas in water overnight or at least for 4-5 hours. Then pressure cook them upto 3-4 whistles so they are well-cooked, almost mashed.

Now take a pan, add the oil to it, then the cumin and mustard seeds. When they start spluttering, add the green chillies, saute for a minute, then add the boiled peas to this. Add the tamarind paste and sufficient amount of water to make it like a gravy. Most of the water will evaporate later, so don't worry if the curry looks thin initially. Now add all the dry spice powders, salt, lemon juice and sugar. Let this boil on medium flame for some time. Adjust seasoning to your taste, then finally add the chopped cilantro (reserve the other for the garnish). Remove from flame and set aside.

Meanwhile, make all your chutneys in advance, or get the ready-made ones from the store. For chutney recipes, see Date-Tamarind chutney and Green Chutney. Now take the gravy in a bowl or plate, add all 3 chutneys according to your taste. Sprinkle some sev on the top to add the crunch, and top it off with chopped onions and coriander. Serve hot with bread pieces sauteed in ghee or butter. As for me, I like it just the way it is!!!

Tip: You can even enjoy this gravy with potato patties for a variation to "Ragda Patties". And as for leftovers (if any:)), use them the next day to eat with rotis or parathas!!

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Padma said...

Where is the Paav? this was on my list lately, but kept postponing! your plate looks lovely Manasi!

Mansi said...

Padma - I like it as it is, no paav needed for me!!:) but my husband likes it with bread though...

Swaruchy said...

wow...a mouth watering dish Mansi.......I love chats.....and this one loks very tempting :-)

Sharmi said...

waw this looks so yum!

Rina said...

Uummm!!! I like Sev Chat. Really chat pat.

Unknown said...

That looks delicious Mansi, my mouth is watering. We use poori(pani poories) with this kind of masala.Thanks for the recipe.

musical said...

Sev Usal is an eternal favorite! Lovely chaat platter there-wish i culd help myself to a bit of that :).

Coffee and Vanilla said...

Beautiful dish!!
I'm looking forward to see which fruit will be chosen for AFAM and I will definitely take part.

I'm hosting two events this month and I would love you to join:
Vegetarian Awareness Month and Inspiring Food Photography.

Greetings, Margot

Coffee and Vanilla said...

Hi again,

Just a short note that you have been awarded with Nice Matters Award. Check out my blog to collect your award :)


Tee said...

now thats what i want for dinner today :) looks delsih!!

Namratha said...

Looks good Mansi, we call this Masala Puri, we layer the pani pooris at the bottom and top it with this making some tomorrow:)

Laavanya said...

I love ragda patties, for that matter any chaat item. This looks very tempting ... I shall remember to make this.

EC said...

yummy...its very tempting

Raks said...

Looks delicious!!I love chat dishes...:)

Latha Narasimhan said...

Hi mansi, I just love all kinds of chats! Your plate is very tempting!
Bas saaru and Bas palya are for RCI karnataka! late entries!! :D Yet to start my RCI tamil festivals dear! Every thing is cooking in my mind and will get posted soon!:))

Nora B. said...

This looks delicious! I would eat it just for the Sev :-)

J said...

A pat on your back!! I was looking for this recipe :)

zobars said...

Hey Mansi, why don't you try your luck out on Rachael Ray's tv show where they are inviting all the home cooks to participate. I think you will do wonderfully. With the variety you can offer. And you are good lookin too.

Mansi said...

Zobars - that by far is the best compliment Ihave received so ar!!! thanks so so so much!!:) u know what, I might actually give RR's show a try:)D

Thx for the vote of confidence!

Cynthia said...

Ummmm, chaat made with green peas, very interesting. I've only ever had it with channa.

Pragyan said...

Hi Mansi, It is morning 10AM here and on seeing your recipe, I want to have this right now for breakfast :(

musical said...

Hey Mansi, i'll be going to the 3rd street today :). There are many new fun things there to enjoy from a foodies' point of view ;). There's a gelato joint called Angelato, and y'day someone mentioned a really new cupcake place :-D.

Cris said...

That looks great for a big crowd, like family get togethers. Love the spices in it.

Anonymous said...

Looks yum!!!