by Chetna Makan

A rice-based Indian street food dish from demo chef Chetna Makan


2 tbsp sunflower oil
1 tsp black mustard seeds
8 curry leaves
2 green chillies, halved lengthways
4 tbsp roasted peanuts
1 onion, roughly chopped
1 floury potato, peeled and cut into 1cm dice
250g flattened rice flakes (poha)
2 tbsp yoghurt
1 tsp salt
½ tsp ground turmeric
½ tsp chilli powder
2 tbsp lemon juice
A handful of coriander leaves, finely chopped
A handful of gram flour noodles (sev)
Lime wedges, to serve


Heat the oil in a wide saucepan over a medium heat. Add the mustard seeds and, once they start to pop, stir in the curry leaves, green chillies, peanuts, onion and potato. Cover the pan with a lid and cook over low heat for about 10 mins, until the potatoes are tender.

Meanwhile, put the flattened rice flakes in a sieve and rinse them with cold water, using just enough water to ensure all the flakes are wet. Tip into a bowl and stir in the yoghurt. Set aside for 5 mins.

Return to the onion-potato mixture and add the salt, turmeric and chilli powder. Cook, stirring, for 1 min, then add the yoghurt-soaked rice flakes. Mix well and cook for 2 mins, until well combined and the rice flakes are warmed through. Stir in the lemon juice.

Serve the poha hot in bowls, sprinkled with fresh chopped coriander and noodles, accompanied by lime wedges for squeezing over.

Recipe: Chetna Makan 
Image: Nassima Rothacker and Keith James