This recipe is a “riff” on a dish we had at the Lantern in Chapel Hill, NC recently. “Chaat” pretty much means “tasty snack you buy from a cart” and there are thousands of recipes, so through trial and error I came up with this vegan version. The original recipe used fried potatoes, cauliflower and chickpeas but I think roasting yields a very similar result without the mess of frying everything. All of these ingredients are available in most American supermarkets, except for maybe the tamarind concentrate and coriander chutney. There is actually a spice blend called “chaat masala” but I couldn’t find it and used mild curry powder instead. The fresh mint and cilantro chutney add bursts of tart and tangy flavor with every bite. —renee.twersky
4 - 6 generous side portions
Roasting the vegetables
Cauliflower, broken into bite sized pieces
New potatoes, diced
Canned chickpeas, drained, rinsed and blotted dry
Olive or canola oil, divided
Kosher or coarse sea salt
Curry powder (I use Merwanjee Poonjiajee & Sons)
Toss each vegetable separately with 1-2 tablespoons of oil and a little salt, and spread each on a baking sheet. Each should be a single layer deep.
Roast vegetables for 20 - 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Roast cauliflower until tinged brown, potatoes until tender, and chickpeas until a deep tan color.
Let the vegetables cool, then place in a large bowl and toss with curry powder. I just keep sprinkling and tossing until I get a nice curry flavor but can still taste the roasted vegetables. Set aside.
Assembling the dish
Mix tamarind concentrate wil 1 tablespoon oil and lime juice. Set aside.
Toss roasted vegetable mix with jalapenos, cucumbers, tomatoes, lime zest, ginger, and mint. Use one jalapeno if you like mild, both if you like spicy.
Add tamarind dressing and cilantro chutney, tossing until everything is well coated. Adjust seasonings, adding salt or curry powder to taste, and serve.