Papad Ki Subji, also known as Papad Ki Sabzi, Dahi Papad Sabzi and Masala Poppadom, is a vegetarian curry from Northern India.
Spicy Masala Poppadom is a simple Rajasthani recipe that is a quick and easy to prepare. From start to finish it’s ready to serve in under an hour.
The dish popular in the province of Rajasthan features soft and crunchy poppadom lentil crackers floating in a fragrant and spicy yogurt curry sauce.
Our healthy gluten free Papad Ki Subji recipe features flavourful ingredients like turmeric, garlic, ginger, cumin, chili powder, mustard seeds, chili’s, cilantro and mint.
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What is Papad Ki Subji?
Papad Ki Subji is a traditional dish from the Rajasthan region of Northern India.
The simple dish is a staple in homes across the north west of India. It’s made with Indian spices and fresh herbs in a rich and creamy gravy simmered with crispy poppadom.
Masala Poppadom is mostly prepared during the dry season, which explains why it is prepared with a limited number of fresh vegetables and herbs.
It is similar to Dahi Papad Sabzi from Bengal, which is noted for including additional tomatoes and mashed potatoes to the recipe.
We love serving Papad Ki Subji as an appetizer at diner or as a light lunch with rice or naan bread.
Travel to India by Cooking Papad Ki Subji at Home
I love traveling through Asia. My first visit to Asia had me living in South Korea for a year as a teacher and it’s where I was first introduced to fermented vegetables like kimchi.
After my contract ended in Seoul I travelled throughout Asia for 6 months, visiting the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, The Maldives and India.
I spent over a month traveling through India. I started in the capital, eating my way through the bustling markets and fine dining restaurants in Delhi. I then embarked on a magical weekend getaway to awe-inspiring Taj Mahal in Agra. In India’s north you’ll find plenty of barbecue and wheat based side dishes like scorched naan bread.
For the second half of my Indian adventure I explored the southern state of Kerala. The south is famous for its seafood, coconut, tropical fruits and rice based side dishes like crispy dosa. The colonial capital of Cochin was formerly run by the Portuguese. It’s also one of the only places in India you can find beef on a menu.
My India trip came to a close in the Bollywood capital, bustling and cosmopolitan Mumbai. The city is famous for its specialty street foods and fine dining restaurants at opulent luxury hotels. The Taj Mahal Palace in particular serves one of the world’s most famous Afternoon Teas.
What I found most fascinating is India’s distinct regional food cultures. Much like the regional cuisines found in France, Germany, Italy or Spain, each city in India had its own local speciality.
After you’ve traveled to India, return home to prepare an authentic and fragrant feast for friends and family featuring this homemade Papad Ki Subji recipe.
Where To Eat Masala Poppadom
If you live in a large city in Canada or America you’ll likely have access to a local Indian restaurants that serve authentic Papad Ki Subji.
Haven’t traveled to India before? It may be helpful to first sample Masala Poppadom at a local Indian restaurant to better understand how the dish is served. You can also assess the heat level of the curry, poppadom to sauce ratio and ideal garnishes to use before trying to make the dish at home.
In Toronto, popular Indian restaurants that may serve Papad Ki Subji include Udupi Palace, Lahore Tikka House and Kothur Indian Cuisine.
My Family Loves Indian Papad Ki Subji
After traveling throughout India and eating at some of the world’s best Indian restaurants I was excited to share my love of Papad Ki Subji with family in Toronto.
I’ve hosted many Indian-themed feasts, showcasing dishes from Delhi to Bengal via fragrant curries, fresh salads and hearty soups.
I served a creamy Chicken Shahi Korma with crunchy Indian Onion Salad for an al fresco lunch in the spring. While in the summer at the cottage in Muskoka we enjoyed a vegetarian feast featuring Shahi Paneer and Indian Chickpea Crepes.
When I finally introduced my parents to vegetarian Papad Ki Subji their eyes bulged with glee. I knew they’d both enjoy the dish because they love crunchy poppadom lentil crackers and enjoy a fragrant creamy curry.
If you’ve traveled to India on holiday there is no better way to share your adventure at home with family and friends at home then by serving our homemade Masala Poppadom recipe.
Masala Poppadom Health Benefits
Our homemade Papad Ki Subji recipe is packed full of healthy ingredients!
Ginger contains at least 14 phytochemicals, many of which have impressive antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It also has a good source of copper, which supports your bones, blood and nervous system.
It is only recently that scientists have begun to identify the components responsible for garlic’s myriad health benefits. Rich in phytochemicals and potassium, garlic helps boost your immune system, fight cancer and protect your heart.
Beans are rich in cancer-fighting vitamin C, energy-boosting B vitamins, and gut-healthy fibre.
Packed with calcium and friendly probiotic bacteria, sour cream and yogurt help keep your bones strong and your gut healthy. Yogurt may also help reduce the risk of obesity, diabetes and some types of cancer.
The star component of turmeric is curcumin, a potent phytochemical that has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It is often prescribed in Indian Ayurvedic medicine to help relieve arthritis, aid digestion and inhibit the growth of cancers.
A rich source of blood-building iron, cumin may also help balance your blood sugar levels and reduce bad cholesterol. It is also traditionally used as a digestive aid.
A good source of bone-strengthening vitamin K, cilantro is also rich in antioxidants that help protect the eyes from damage by free radicals.
Fresh mint is antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, and can have a calming effect on the digestive system. It is also a good source of folate, which supports blood health.
Papad Ki Subji Cooking Tips
If it’s your first time cooking restaurant-style Masala Poppadom at home be sure to review our detailed step-by-step recipe below. Here are some helpful tips and tricks to get you started:
- Use a large cast iron dutch oven with a high rim to reduce splatter when cooking.
- We suggest using a high quality rubber spatula spoon when making curry so you can easily stir, scrape down the side of the pot and sip to check if it needs to be seasoned further.
- Do not replace normal yogurt with Greek-style yogurt as it is too thick and will create the desired creamy curry sauce.
- Papad Ki Subji is traditionally served with fresh naan or roti. If you love baking why not make your own sourdough naan?
- If you don’t like spicy food feel free to only use one green chili (or none at all).
- If you love spicy food kick up the heat by adding the chili seeds to the yogurt sauce or a dash of your favourite hot sauce.
- You can use any dal or lentil poppadom. I use whatever I have in the pantry. Urad dal papad, moon dal papad or chana dal works just fine.
- You can add raw poppadom to the curry like in our recipe or fry or roast them on a direct flame for additional smoky flavour.
- Only add poppadom moments before you are ready to serve the dish as they soften in minutes.
What To Serve with Masala Poppadom
There’s nothing more comforting on a cold day then cozying up to a bowl of crunchy poppadom swimming in a spicy yogurt sauce.
If you’re hosting a large dinner party you might want to serve our Papad Ki Subzi as an appetizer before serving heartier mains
If you’re hosting a large Indian-themed dinner party buffet you may want to add spicy chutney, fresh salads, soups, fragrant biryani, homemade naan and a seafood or meat curry.
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Storing Papad Ki Subji
If you have leftover Papad Ki Subji you can store it in the fridge in an airtight container for 3-4 days. To reheat simply zap the container in the microwave or reheat in the oven.
We suggest storing leftovers in separate Pyrex freezer safe containers that have a snug lid so there’s no spilling. We do not suggest freezing leftovers as the delicate poppadom fall apart when thawed.
How To Make Vegetarian Masala Poppadom
Papad Ki Subzi Masala Poppadom Curry
- 1 tbsp Ghee
- 1/4 tsp Mustard seeds
- 2 Red chilies sliced
- 1/4 tsp Cumin seeds
- 2 sprigs Curry leaves
- 1/2 tbsp Ginger & Garlic Paste
- 1/2 tsp Ground turmeric
- 1/2 tsp Red chili powder
- 1/2 tsp Ground cumin
- 9 oz Yogurt
- 15 g Chickpea flour
- 6 Poppadoms
- 1/2 tsp Cilantro leaves chopped
- 1/2 tsp Mint leaves chopped
- 1/2 tsp Green chilies chopped
- Heat ghee in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the mustard seeds and sliced red chilies and fry until seeds crackle. Add the cumin seeds and toss until brown, then add the curry leaves and ginger & garlic paste. Saute for 2-3 minutes.
- Mix in the turmeric, chili powder, and ground cumin and cook for another 2-3 minutes.
- Whisk the yogurt and chickpea flour in a bowl until well combined. Add 1 cup water and mix.
- Slowly add yogurt mixture to the pan, stirring constantly to prevent it from spitting. When all the yogurt has been incorporated, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 1/2 cup water and simmer until the gravy thickens slightly. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Break the poppadoms into quarters and add to the gravy. Simmer for just 3 minutes.
- Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle with cilantro, mint and green chilies. Serve with rice, naan or roti.
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