Aloo Kabli: Kolkata's Own Version of Aloo Chaat
Image Credit: Aloo Kabli is an iconic street food that has looks of a salad and ingredients of curry.

Kolkata’s vivid culinary map is inundated with chronicles equally ravishing. You must be aware of the legend of the great Kolkata Kathi Rolls. They were apparently made for the British so they could warm up to the Kathi Kababs of the Nizams. The British weren’t as comfortable using their hands to eat the kababs, so the kababs were served to them wrapped inside a paratha. Similarly, it is said that potatoes were used in Kolkata Biryani to fill up the void of meat, of course, the theory has been a point of contention among many food historians. But what no one would argue with, is Kolkata’s genius skill to mix and match. If a Ghugni chaat could comprise both boiled chickpeas and mutton chunks, in Doodh Cola, you find an exceptional combination of milk and soda. Aloo Kabli, is another iconic street food that has looks of a salad and ingredients of curry. It is the epic coming together of India’s favourite tuber (aloo) and legume (chana), along with myriad smears and spices.

The star ingredients of Aloo Kabli, as the name would suggest are Aloo or potato and Kabli or Kabuli Chana, but there are plenty of elements that make the snack ever-so-sensational. It is quite a sight to watch Alu Kabli in making, just like in  Jhalmuri, veggies are chopped in tremendous speed. Chopped chillies and onions are mixed up with chopped boiled potatoes, boiled chanas which are further mixed with heaps of tamarind pulp, freshly chopped coriander leaves and Alu Kabli Masala, made with salt and other spices. 

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Every part of the process is so enticing, you do not want to miss out on anything, even the rattling of spoon against the steel container in which all the mixing takes place, it is the sound of your chaat coming together, the sound of a guaranteed, satiating experience. The chaat is rustled up in minutes, but the wait for the same may feel like eternity, even today, the chaat is served in makeshift, paper pockets made out of old newspapers. Finished off with lemon juice and more masala, aloo kabli is a snack that has a universal appeal. It is not too spicy, neither is it deep-fried or greasy, it is a hit among kids and adults both, and the weight-watchers too.

In India, there is no dearth of potato-based snacks, from Delhi’s aloo chaat and aloo tikki to Mumbai’s Ragda patties and Vada Pav, the list is endless. Aloo Kabli is one of Kolkata’s hidden gems that is no less in terms of flavour and vibrance. Besides, it is so easy to make at home too. You do not need an range of ingredients or extraordinary cooking skills to put it together. Just follow this recipe and satiate your cravings, one wholesome bite at a time.  

Try this aloo kabli recipe at home and let us know how you liked it.