Surti Sev Khamni| Gujarati Sev Khamni Recipe

Surti Sev Khamni is a snack from the state of Gujarat, more particularly from the Surat region. It is a unique dish, made with chana dal, extremely delicious and dearly beloved to the people of Gujarat.

In today’s blog post, let us see the Gujarati Sev Khamni recipe.

My favourite Surti Sev Khamni, all decked up and pretty, ready to be indulged in!

What exactly is Surti Sev Khamni?

The city of Surat in Gujarat is famous not just for diamonds and textiles, but also for its food. Surat boasts of a robust cuisine all its own, along with a vibrant street food scene. Vati Dal Na Khaman, Rassawala Khaman, Undhiyu, Locho, Ghari, Dabeli and Sev Khamni are some popular dishes.

Sev Khamni is made with chana dal, soaked and then cooked with lots of garlic, ginger and chillies, some jaggery for sweetness, and soured with lemon. The soft and crumbly chana dal is served topped with a generous dose of sev, fresh coriander and pomegranate pearls. Can you imagine the burst of flavours? It is a dish that is filling and hearty, not too difficult to put together, almost healthy barring the sev and jaggery.

I love food that explodes with flavours in my mouth, so it is no wonder that I adore Sev Khamni. I remember Dad getting home these small packets of Sev Khamni on his way home from work, growing up in Ahmedabad – they would cause such a commotion in the family, and rightly so! It would be garlicky, fiery, mildly sweet and tangy, and simply beautiful. I learnt from Gujarati friends of mine how to put together the dish, a skill that I have honed over the years.

Is Sev Khamni the same as Amiri Khaman?

Often, Sev Khamni and Amiri Khaman are believed to be the same – one is passed off as the other. However, living in Gujarat for long has taught me that that’s not the case. These are two different dishes!

Sev Khamni, as I was saying, is made with soaked chana dal that is ground and cooked to a crumbly texture along with a few other ingredients. That’s the way it is authentically, traditionally, cooked in Surat.

Amiri Khaman, on the other hand, is nothing but refurbished khaman – leftover khaman crumbled up and served with a variety of toppings. The khaman may be an instant version, made with gram flour (besan), or a mix of semolina (sooji) and besan, or Vati Dal Na Khaman that is made with a fermented chana dal batter.

Sev Khamni and Amiri Khaman can look and taste quite similar, but there are subtle differences in the texture, taste and technique of both the dishes. But, hey, both dishes are absolutely delectable!

Gujarati Sev Khamni recipe

Here’s how Surti Sev Khamni is made.

Ingredients (serves 3-4):

1. 1 cup of chana dal

2. A 1-inch piece of ginger

3. 2 green chillies

4. 5-6 cloves of garlic

5. 1 tablespoon oil

6. 3/4 teaspoon mustard seeds

7. 2 pinches of asafoetida

8. Salt to taste

9. 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder

10. 1/2 cup of milk, boiled and cooled

11. 3 tablespoons of jaggery powder or to taste

12. 2 heaped tablespoons of finely chopped coriander

13. Juice of 1 lemon or to taste


1. Fine sev, as required

2. Pomegranate arils, as required

3. Finely chopped coriander, as required


Left top and bottom: Steps 1 and 2, Right top and bottom: Steps 3 and 4

1. Wash the chana dal thoroughly under running water. Drain out all the water. Then, soak the chana dal in enough fresh water to cover it, for at least 3 hours.

2. When the chana dal is done soaking, drain out all the water from it. Transfer to a mixer jar. Grind coarsely, preferably without adding any water. If needed, add very little water for grinding. Keep aside.

3. Peel the ginger and garlic cloves. Chop the ginger and green chillies roughly. Transfer these to a small mixer jar.

4. Grind together the ingredients in the mixer jar to a paste, using very little water. Keep aside.

Top left and right: Steps 6 and 7, Centre left and right: Steps 8 and 9, Bottom left: Step 10, Bottom right: How the mixture looks when it is cooked and ready

5. Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed pan. Add in the mustard seeds and allow them to sputter. Add in the asafoetida and let it stay in for 2 seconds.

6. Reduce the flame to low-medium, and add in the green chilli-ginger-garlic paste, followed by the coarsely ground chana dal. Mix well, and cook for a minute.

7. Add salt to taste and turmeric powder. Mix well. Cook on low-medium flame for 4-5 minutes.

8. At this stage, add the milk to the pan. Mix well. Continue to keep the flame at low-medium.

9. Cover the pan and cook on low-medium flame for 3-4 minutes. Uncover in between to stir and ensure that the mixture is not burning at the bottom.

10. At this stage, add in the jaggery powder and mix well. Cover and cook on low-medium flame for 2-3 minutes more or till the mixture attains a dry but soft and crumbly texture. Switch off gas.

Left top and bottom: Step 11, Top right: The crumbly texture the mixture gets when it has cooled slightly, Bottom right: Surti Sev Khamni, ready to serve

11. Mix in the finely chopped coriander and lemon juice. Allow the mixture to cool down till it is barely warm, then the Surti Sev Khamni is ready to assemble.

12. To serve, crumble up the mixture gently and place some in serving bowls. Top with fine sev, finely chopped coriander and pomegranate arils as needed. Serve immediately.

Tips, tricks and variations

1. Sugar can be used in place of the jaggery powder I have used here. I prefer using jaggery powder. Adjust the sweetness as per personal taste preferences.

2. You may skip the garlic if you do not prefer it. Personally, though, I prefer it with loads of garlic – that’s the way I have grown up eating it.

3. You may top the Surti Sev Khamni with some finely chopped onions and grated coconut. I usually skip these.

4. You may use some sweet-sour tamarind chutney and spicy green chutney to top the Surti Sev Khamni. I usually don’t.

5. Adjust the number of green chillies you use depending upon personal taste preferences. The same goes for lemon juice.

6. Do not skimp on the coriander, pomegranate and fine sev. These are the three main pillars of a good sev khamni and need to be used generously. Use the freshest of coriander and pomegranate for best results. Use only the fine variety of sev – the thick variety doesn’t suit well. I have used store-bought fine sev here.

7. The milk adds a nice texture and taste to the Surti Sev Khamni. However, if you don’t prefer using it or want a vegan version, use water instead.

8. Do not grind the chana dal to a fine paste. For best results, keep the mixture coarse. Do not add too much water while grinding.

9. Cook the mixture till you get a soft, crumbly texture. Most of the moisture should evaporate, but the mixture should feel soft and not too dry. This is the perfect texture that one should aim for.

Looking for more Gujarati recipes? Check out my posts on Gujarati Khatti Meethi Dal, Gujarati Kadhi, Undhiyu, Dal Dhokli, Methi Na Gota, Dabeli and Handvo.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!


Samusa Thote|Burmese Samosa Salad

Samusa Thote, a popular street food from Myanmar, refers to a scrumptious salad made using samosas. Yes, you read that right! If all salads tasted like Samusa Thote, I doubt anyone would crib about eating them! 🙂

I have never been to Burma, or Myanmar as it is called now. My first brush with the country’s cuisine was at Burma Burma in Bangalore, a few years ago. It was love at first bite for me with Samusa Thote, the salad bursting with flavours and layered textures – think crunchy cabbage and cucumber, bits of deep-fried potato samosas, tamarind chutney, fresh mint and coriander, chilli and browned garlic. What’s to not love, eh?

In today’s blog post, let me take you through the process of making Samusa Thote or Burmese Samosa Salad.

Samusa Thote or Burmese Samosa Salad

An introduction to Burmese cuisine

The food in Myanmar has influences from neighbouring countries like India, China and Thailand, but the country has a distinct cuisine all of its own. Burmese cuisine is flavourful, beautifully layered with complex tastes and textures. Soups and salads are an important part of eating in Myanmar – there are so many different types, it’s unimaginable! I have been reading up about Burmese cuisine lately, and have seriously been dumbfounded.

Some classic dishes from the Burmese cuisine are Laphet Thoke (salad made using tea leaves), Mohinga (thin rice noodles served with broth), Khao Suey (noodles in a curried coconut milk broth), Tofu Nway (tofu made with chickpeas, served in a warm broth), Gyin Thoke (salad made with pickled ginger, legumes, fried garlic and sesame seeds), Danbauk (Burmese-style biryani), Sarbutee (soup made using dried maize) and Htamin Let Thoke (a hand-tossed salad made using rice, vermicelli, fried onions and garlic, tamarind paste and other ingredients).

The street food culture is big in Myanmar, from what I understand. There’s a plethora of food choices available on the streets, delicious and inexpensive at that. Samusa Thote is a hugely popular street food, with vendors selling take-aways in plastic bags off carts by the roadside.

If Burmese cuisine interests you, you must definitely check out my recipe for Vegetarian Khao Suey. This happens to be one of the most tried out and beloved recipes from my blog.

What goes into Samusa Thote

Like I was saying earlier, Samusa Thote is a salad made using samosas. Samosas are, therefore, the main ingredient of this dish. I’m not sure how different Indian samosas are from the Burmese version – I have used the former here. I find that big, fat Punjabi samosas with a potato filling work best in this salad. I buy them ready-made from a farsan store near my place.

The crunch factor in this salad comes from fresh cabbage, onions and cucumber. Garlic is lightly browned in oil and added in, for flavour. A handful of mint and coriander goes in too, which takes the flavour quotient up by several notches. A teeny amount of roasted gram flour is added for a nutty flavour and interesting texture. Thickened tamarind extract acts as the dressing – I have used the tamarind chutney that we usually use in chaats. A dash of red chilli powder spices things up, and a bit of lemon juice evens out the other tastes.

My way of making Samusa Thote is inspired by the recipe from Burma Superstar: Addictive Recipes From The Crossroads Of Southeast Asia, a cookbook by Desmond Tan and Kate Leahy. I have made minor tweaks to the original recipe, using ingredients and techniques that are familiar to me. I am not claiming that this is a 100% authentic recipe, but I can definitely tell you that the end result is completely delicious. Try it out for yourself!

How to make Samusa Thote or Burmese Samosa Salad

Once you have all the ingredients at hand, Samusa Thote is a rather easy thing to put together. Here is how I make it.

Ingredients (serves 2-3):

1. 2 big potato samosas, store-bought

2. 3 heaped teaspoons gram flour (besan)

3. 5 garlic cloves

4. 1 tablespoon oil

5. 1/4 cup finely chopped cabbage

6. 1/4 cup finely chopped cucumber

7. 1/4 cup finely chopped onion

8. A handful of fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped

9. A handful of fresh mint leaves, finely chopped

10. Salt to taste

11. Red chilli powder to taste

12. 3-4 tablespoons of sweet-sour tamarind chutney or as needed

13. A dash of lemon juice or as needed (optional)


Left top and bottom: Step 1, Top right, centre and bottom: Steps 2, 3 and 4

1. Take the gram flour in a small pan and place on medium heat. Roast on medium flame till the gram flour turns aromatic, 2-3 minutes. Transfer to a plate and allow it to cool down.

2. Peel the garlic cloves and chop roughly. Keep ready.

3. Take the finely chopped onion, cabbage, cucumber, mint and coriander leaves in a large mixing bowl.

4. Add salt and red chilli powder to taste, to the mixing bowl.

Top left and right: Steps 5 and 6, Bottom left: Step 7, Right centre and bottom: Steps 8 and 9

5. Add the roasted gram flour to the mixing bowl.

6. Cut up the samosas roughly and add them to the mixing bowl too.

7. Heat the oil in a small tempering pan, then add in the chopped garlic. Turn the flame down to medium. Allow the garlic to turn a light golden brown, ensuring that it doesn’t burn. Add the browned garlic and the oil to the mixing bowl.

8. Add in the tamarind chutney to taste. Mix gently.

9. Taste and add lemon juice or more tamarind chutney if needed. Mix. Your Burmese Samosa Salad is ready. Serve immediately.

Related event: The Shhh Cooking Secretly Challenge

This recipe is brought to you in association with the Shhh Cooking Secretly Challenge.

The Shhh Cooking Secretly Challenge is a fun activity run by a group of passionate food bloggers. The bloggers showcase recipes based on an interesting theme, every month.

The participants are grouped into pairs, and each pair exchanges two ingredients secretly, unknown to the rest of the group. Each participant then uses the two secret ingredients assigned to them to prepare a recipe befitting the theme of the month. A picture of each completed dish is then shared in the group by each participant, and members try to guess the two secret ingredients.

The theme for the month of November was ‘World Street Food’, suggested by Preethi, author of the lovely food blog Preethi’s Cuisine. For the theme, Preethi prepared Firi Firi, these beautiful Tahitian coconut-flavoured donuts.

I was paired with Sasmita of First Timer Cook for the month, who suggested I make something using ‘onion’ and ‘cabbage’. I decided to share one of my all-time favourite street food recipes – Burmese Samosa Salad – for the theme. Sasmita prepared these delicious Dessert Quesadillas using ‘Nutella’ and ‘strawberries’, which were the two secret ingredients I suggested to her.

Dietary guidelines

This is a completely vegetarian recipe. You can use samosas with a non-vegetarian filling too, if you prefer.

This recipe is vegan, suited to people following a plant-based diet.

Tips & Tricks

1. I have used store-bought potato samosas here. You can make your own at home, too.

2. You can use samosas with any type of filling, as you prefer. From potatoes and peas to lamb, any type of samosas work. I prefer using large Punjabi samosas with potato filling.

3. I have used the tamarind chutney we prepare for chaats, here. I usually prepare a batch of the chutney, refrigerate it, and use it as needed. Use as per personal taste preferences.

4. Finely chopped green chillies can be used in addition to or in place of the red chilli powder I have used here. I prefer using red chilli powder to taste.

5. Soaked and cooked chickpeas (kabuli chana), finely chopped tomatoes, fried onions, grated raw mango and carrot are some other possible additions to this Burmese Samosa Salad. I usually do not add these ingredients, but keep it simple the way I have shared above.

6. You may use more or less vegetables in your Samusa Thote, as per personal preferences. I usually add lots of veggies. You may use purple cabbage (instead of the green I have used here), for a pop of colour.

7. Make sure the garlic does not get overly burnt while frying it. At the same time, it shouldn’t stay raw either.

8. Using lemon is optional. If the sourness from the tamarind is enough, you can skip the lemon juice entirely.

9. Use the ‘seedless’ variety of cucumber, also called ‘English cucumber’, for best results.

10. You can chop the veggies finely or into long slivers, as you prefer. I prefer chopping them finely.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!