This is a modernized version of the chevdo, or chevro, that my grandma used to make. This recipe uses easy-to-find cereals, and I rely on baking more than frying, so the results are not overly oily. Baking also simplifies the recipe. The results are a snack food that is familiar to any Gujarati, or anyone anywhere who has enjoyed a cereal-based snack mix.
What is Chevdo?
Chevdo (called “chevda” in Hindi) is a snack mix, made with a variety of savory ingredients. It often has a rice component (poha or mumra), nuts, a chickpea component (sev, bundhi, gathiya), corn (corn flakes); variety of different ingredients combined with a savory spice mixture.
There are many different recipes for chevdo across India, this one is very close to one of the Gujarati versions that has always been in my family.
Most Americans are familiar with Chex mixes and other cereal mixes. Chevdo is an Indian version of these. In both countries, these cereal mixes are often salty, spicy, and sometimes sweet. Aside from the curry leaves, which can be left out, this recipe would feel equally at home served with beer at an American football game as it would served to guests on Diwali or served alongside a cup of cha at tea time.
About this Recipe
My goal for this recipe was to make it approachable. This is traditionally made with ingredients like mumra and sev that require a visit to an Indian grocery store in the US. On top of that, it could be a lot of work. My Grandma painstakingly deep fried each ingredient separately.
Another issue I wanted to tackle was the greasiness. Many chevdos that I have had in India are just too oily. After some trial and error, I found what I consider to be just the right amount of oil for maximum enjoyment. Not at all dry, but it will not cover your fingertips in grease either.
Chevdo | Chevda | Spicy Snack Mix
- 2 cups cornflakes
- 1 cup rice krispies
- ½ cup raw cashews
- ½ cup raw peanuts
- 2 Tbsp oil
- 2 Tbsp golden raisins
- 15-20 curry leaves
- 1 Green chilies sliced
- ½ tsp turmeric
- ½ tsp salt or to taste
- ½ tsp red chili powder or to taste
- ¼ Tbsp cumin
- ⅓ Tbps coriander
- ⅓ tsp hing asafoetida
- ⅛ tsp citric acid see notes for substitutions
- ½ Tbsp sugar optional
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Add cornflakes, rice krispies, peanuts, cashews in a single layer to a baking pan. Bake 8-10 minutes, stirring halfway through. Keep a close eye on it to make sure it doesn’t burn.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 200°F.
- In a small bowl, mix dry masalas: chili powder, turmeric, salt, hing, cumin, coriander and citric acid. Set aside.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of oil. Fry the curry leaves until they are crispy, about 15-20 seconds. Remove from oil.
- Add the raising to the oil. Fry until they puff up, about 20 seconds. Remove from oil.
- Fry the green chilies in the oil, until dry and crisp. About 45 seconds to a minute. Remove from oil.
- Let the oil cool so that it is warm but not hot. Measure 1 1/2 tablespoons of oil. Pour into the bowl with the masala mix. Stir well.
- Transfer masala oil onto the baking sheet, toss gently to distribute the oil evenly. Sprinkle over the raisins, chilies and curry leaves. Mix well.
- Bake at 200°F for 10 minutes.
- Remove from oven. Top with sugar, stir gently to mix. Let cool completely.