This corn chaat is just what you want when cozying up indoors while enjoying the spring showers.It is crispy, fiery and full of texture. Its March here is the Northern Hemisphere and spring is here…well almost but I am so excited! ‘Tis the season when days are getting longer but the weather is still chilly. That means it’s time to make some chaat. Now don’t get me wrong, there is never a wrong time to have chaat. However, when the weather is conducive it just adds an extra little to the enjoyment of food. This recipe is a version of a street food that is very popular in India also popularly called Bhutte ka chaat. Crispy corn is the main ingredient here and its tastes absolutely delicious!
If this is your first time coming across this term, chaat is a generic name used in India to refer to various forms of street food. In Hindi and a few other Northern Indian languages, it literally translates to finger licking good or relish with enjoyment. The name of the dish itself will not have the word chaat except in a few cases like this Corn Chaat. A variety of ingredients are used including papdi (flattened semolina crisps),puri (puffed semolina crisps),puffed rice, sev (fried chickpea short noodles), chickpea flour, potatoes, onions, peas, carrot, tomato, cilantro not to mention spices and spice blends(masala).
This recipe for corn chaat uses simple ingredients and I have also provided variations for cooking the corn. Please see below for ingredients, process and any other notes/suggestions.
- Shelled sweet corn – I used frozen sweet corn which worked great. If you have access to fresh corn, you can use that as well.
- Carrots – I used shredded carrots for color, flavor and some texture.
- Fresh Cilantro/Coriander – This is for flavor and garnishing. Cilantro is pretty de rigueur for Indian chaats.
- Corn starch – This is used to coat the corn and helps in giving it a crispy finish.
- The spices I used for this was just salt and chilli powder. I used regular Indian chilli powder. Spicy paprika, Kashmiri chilli powder or any other milder chilli powder can be used if you prefer less heat in your food.
- Oil/butter – I would recommend a neutral tasting oil like avacado which is what I used. You can also used butter/vegan alternatives.
How to make the corn chaat?
Preparing corn using different methods
Now there are various types of corn chaat that you will find if you go looking for it in India. A lot of these corn chaat recipes are made with steamed fresh corn but fried corn is also very popular. For this recipe, I decided to make this chaat with fried corn but instead of deep frying I used an an air fryer.
Whether you are deep frying or air frying the corn, place the corn in a big enough bowl. Add the oil and coat well. Now add cornstarch to do the same. Once the corn kernels are well coated with the starch, add chilli powder, salt and mix well. Then proceed to cooking it.
Tips for deep frying
If you do not have an air fryer or don’t wish to use one, you can simply deep fry it in oil. I would suggest working in batches depending on the size of the wok used. Start at medium low heat and test with a few kernels of corn to check if the oil is hot enough. Now slowly add the corn to prevent excessive spattering and gently move them around to prevent sticking. After a few seconds, you can increase the heat to medium level. Once you see the corn getting crispy and golden brown on the outside, remove all of it carefully using a skimmer spoon. Place on a paper towel lined plate or bowl to remove excess oil.
Place the coated corn in the air fryer and airfry at 375 deg F for 10 minutes. I have chosen a lower temperature since corn kernels are so small, they may end up burning if heated too quickly for long periods of time. After 10 minutes, toss the corn to flip over as much corn as possible. Airfry for another 6-8 minutes until all of the corn is crispy. Remove from the air fryer straight away.
This is probably the healthiest version of the 3 ways in which you can make this chaat. Bring a large saucepan of water to boil. Add the corn and let cook for 5-7 minutes until it is fully cooked. Remove and let the extra water completely drain. Spread on a large paper towel to soak away the moisture.Now mix with oil or melted butter. Omit the corn starch and add the chilli powder, salt and mix well.
Serve hot mixed with shredded carrot, chopped cilantro and some lime juice squeezed on top.
Variations of Corn Chaat
There are multiple variations of this chaat that you can prepare. Here I have used a very simple combination of salt and chilli powder. You can try other variations including
- Salt and Pepper
- Lemon and Pepper
- Honey Chilli Lime
- With Chaat Masala
- With cumin, coriander
- Top with chopped tomatoes, sev(fried chickpea noodles), roasted peanuts
I hope you can give this recipe a try and maybe with different toppings! If you do, please let me know in the comments and also give it a rating. You can also tag me using #dillandthyme on Instagram or on Pinterest.
Try these other recipes that you might enjoy!
Corn Chaat (Indian crispy corn savory snack)
- 2 cup Frozen or Fresh Corn
- 3-4 tbsp Avocado Oil Omit if making it oil free
- 1 Carrot medium, washed and shredded
- 1/4 cup Cilantro washed and chopped
- 2 tbsp Corn Starch
- 1 tsp Red Chilli Powder
- 1 Lemon
- Salt to taste
- Mix the corn with oil and ensure it is coated well. Now add the corn starch and mix again to coat all of the corn.
- Add the chili powder, salt and toss until mixed well.
- Spread the corn in the air fryer basket and air fry at 375 deg F for 10 minutes. Toss well. Air fry again for 6-8 minutes until crispy.
- Once done, remove and place in a dry bowl. Mix in the shredded carrot, cilantro. Optionally top with more shredded carrots, sev and chopped tomatoes. Squeeze some lime juice and serve hot.