When I was much younger, my brother and I spent an entire summer in India with our aunt and uncle in Mumbai while our parents toured Australia. The street food in Mumbai always looked so yummy but we were too scared to eat it.
The preparation methods were a little questionable and fearing food poisoning, we ended up eating at home almost every day. I always thought it was impressive that my aunt never made the same thing twice for dinner all summer long. It was always something good and everything got sprinkled with the freshest most fragrant cilantro you can imagine.
One evening, as she was prepping, I asked what we were having for dinner. “Sandwich,” she says. Surprised, I thought to myself, You eat sandwiches? That's not Indian food. Well, it turns out that this sandwich is a popular Mumbai street food.
In fact, most people actually call it a Bombay or Mumbai Sandwich. I love a good sandwich. It's one of my favorite things to eat. At the time however, all I knew were PB&J's and cheese sandwiches so I was a little skeptical of these vegetable sandwiches. Still, having a sandwich for dinner was unheard of with my parents, so I was excited.
The verdict? I loved this sandwich! It’s made with fresh cilantro chutney spread on one slice and butter spread on the other. The layers between the bread consist of potatoes, tomatoes, onion and cucumber all seasoned with chaat masala.
Chaat masala is a blend of dried mango powder, black salt, cumin, coriander, dry ginger, asafoetida, and chili powder. Together, it is one tasty combination bursting with flavors and veggies!
My aunt made us some really delicious and fun food to eat that summer. People say street food is never the same when you make it at home, but I was ok with not taking those chances. Besides, I knew she really wanted us to enjoy without worrying we would get sick with our weak American stomachs.
I’m reminded of her every time I make a Mumbai sandwich. If you enjoy Indian street food like samosas or anything covered with cilantro chutney, you’re going to love this recipe. It makes a great lunch, dinner or snack!