• The Perennial Plate’s Wild Rice Bhel Puri


Spicy, Sweet, Sour Indian Street Food

By Daniel Klein & Mirra Fine

One of our favorite dishes in India is also one of the freshest. This dish can be made with all prepared goods, or you can make it all from scratch… we recommend the latter. This is also the first recipe from our cooking video series with Tastemade.com. Enjoy!

Check out The Perennial Plate’s “A Day in India” episode.

Wild Rice Bhel Puri


  • 1/2 red onion diced small
  • 1 ripe tomato, diced
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon Garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon Turmeric
  • 2 finely sliced green chilies (if you like)
  • 1 cup boiled and diced potato
  • 1/4 cup Tamarind sauce (see recipe below)
  • 1/4 cup Cilantro Chutney (see recipe below)
  • 1 cup Wild Rice, puffed into 3 cups*  (see recipe below)
  • 1/2 cup Sev* (a dried vermicelli like noodle that is part of a lot of snack in india)
  • 1/2 cup crushed Papadi* (fried crackers also used in snacks in India)

Tamarind Sauce

  • 3 tablespoons Tamarind
  • 3 tablespoons Jaggery (unrefined cane sugar from India.  You can also use brown sugar, but the Jaggery has a distinct and rich flavor)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Garam Masala (you can buy this from any grocery store or Indian market, or you can make it yourself by combining peppercorns, cloves, cinnamon, cumin and cardamom)
  • A pinch of red chilli powder
  • 2 cups of water

Cilantro Chutney

  • 4 cups roughly chopped cilantro (stems and all)
  • 1 cup roughly chopped mint leaves
  • 5 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • 2 green chilies, roughly chopped (for a mild heat, add more to your taste)
  • 1 thumb of ginger, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 1/4 cup water
  • Salt to taste

Puffed Wild Rice

  • 1 cup wild rice
  • 1 inch of canola oil in a small pot
  • Salt to taste
  • Have an extra pot and a strainer on hand



Mix it all up, taste, adjust seasoning if you want more spice or salt and serve IMMEDIATELY!

Tamarind Sauce

Obviously, the main ingredient in this dish is raw tamarind. There are many options for this: You can buy the dried pods (in which case, for this recipe, you would need to use 3 pods and peel the skin before use. The other options are tamarind paste in a jar or tamarind in a block. In these cases, the skin has already been removed. I prefer to use the block of tamarind.

This recipe is as simple as placing all the ingredients in a pot, bringing them to a bowl and then letting the contents reduce by half. This should take about 10 minutes. To increase the portion size, double all the ingredients except for the spices…don’t double the spices, as it will be too strong. Each time you double the recipe, only increase the amount of spice by a quarter.

Cilantro Chutney

Put half of the cilantro and all the other ingredients in a food processor and pulse. Once the mixture has reduced dramatically, add the rest of the cilantro.

Puffed Wild Rice

Heat the canola oil to 400 degrees. Once it is at 400 degrees, pour a 1/4 cup of wild rice into the oil. Immediately the rice will puff and it will continue to do so for a few seconds. After the popping sound has stopped and the pile of puffed rice stops growing, strain the rice out by placing a strainer above another pot.  Put the strained puffed rice onto a paper towel and salt with fine sea salt. Heat up the second pot of oil and fry up the next batch of wild rice. Having too much of the puffed product is not a bad thing as it makes for a great snack. Let the puffed rice cool.


* Puffed white rice is the traditional ingredient, because we are in Minnesota, we wanted to do things a little differently.
* The sev and papadia are not necessary and you could substitute for corn chips or most salty snacks.

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