Puffed Rice Poha–a Mom’s Favourite


By Nisha Vedi Pawar, guest blogger @lovelaughmirch

Poha is a popular breakfast or tea time snack throughout India with slight variations. Traditional Poha is made with flattened rice and soft potatoes seasoned with green chillies, onions, coriander leaves and lemon. While Poha was not a frequent dish in my house, I had the pleasure of trying it once Hubby Darling and I got married. My mother-in-law puts a twist on the traditional recipe and uses puffed rice rather then flattened rice. After she sautés the onions, potatoes and remaining spices, she adds the puffed rice – coating each morsel with flavor.

As puffed rice is quite light (especially when you don’t add water to it) this makes for a wonderful choice when you want a flavorful and filling but not overly heavy meal. Served with a hot cup of masala chai, I’m sure your family will love this Puffed Rice Poha!




4 cups Puffed Rice

1 potato peeled & boiled

1 cup onion chopped

3 green chillies (Serrano chillies) – chopped

1 teaspoon turmeric powder

5-6 curry leaves

½ teaspoon mustard seed

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice

3 tablespoons Vegetable oil

2 1/2 teaspoons salt



In a large bowl soak the puffed rice in 6-7 cups of water. Let sit for 10-15 minutes. Once the rice is soaked, strain it and with the back of a spoon or flat spatula press against the rice to ensure all the excess water has been strained. Set aside. In a large skillet/wok, heat oil on medium heat and toast the cumin seeds, mustard seeds, curry leaves, and green chilies. As they start crackling, add the onions and sauté until the onions become translucent. Now add the boiled potato, salt, and turmeric; mash into mix . After mixing, add the puffed rice and stir gently for 5-6 minutes, incorporating all ingredients.

Once mixed, turn heat off, add the lemon juice and cover the frying pan. Let it sit covered for 6-7 minutes. This will allow the puffed rice to moisten and soften without becoming mushy. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves.

*For some extra crunch and added favor, additional garnishes include unsalted roasted peanuts or thin sev (thin crispy Indian noodles).


More about Nisha:

Nisha is a HR professional  living in the New York City Area. She is also a freelance food writer and recipe developer for “Love Laugh Mirch – A need to feed a tummy & a soul.”, a blog that primarily focuses on her culinary adventures while she experiments with anything from cupcakes to curry. Nisha’s primary influences have always been the food her parents prepared for her growing up. Her blog also provides restaurant reviews and construction updates (the trials and tribulations while her and husband build their first home.)

You can follow her on her journey at:

Blog:  www.lovelaughmirch.com 


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