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Gavran Zhunka

'Zhunka' word is very synonymous, when it comes to comfort food. A very basic dish that originated in few parts of Western India. Cooking zhunka takes literally no time. Once known as a poor man's food (I dislike this term though), and it was sold to underprivileged in Maharashtra through subsidized outlets, years back. Not sure if it still exists. But for me Zhunka is a all time favorite dish, without any social status attached to it.

Zhunka predominantly is made with gram flour or besan. There are many variations, like PITHALE is bit porridge consistency and the drier version is made with spring onions or scallions or gram flour. Today I have made with channa dal or bengal gram that is soaked and coarsely ground. I personally love this method because it is way easier to cook and the end result is delicious, soft and fluffy Zhunka. Goes well with Bhakri and some raw onions at the side, potato bhajiya and some garlic chutney.. just as how I put my thali together.

The version I make, is with some twists that adapts to my dietary requirement. I am glad to share how I curate this humble Gavran Zhunka..


- Half cup channa dal or gram flour that's soaked for 4hrs and then coarsely ground with 2-3tbs water

- 2 tbs of coarsely ground ginger, garlic and green chilies paste

- one chopped onion

- 3-4 tablespoons oil (this dish requires extra oil)

- one tsp each of turmeric and chili powder

- one tsp ajwain or bishops weed

- few curry leaves

- chopped cilantro

- hing

- salt as per taste


1 - In a pan add 3-4 tbs oil and once it heats up add the ginger garlic green chilies paste and fry until raw smell is off

2 - Add raw onions and saute until it turn soft

3 - Add hing, curry leaves, turmeric powder, chili powder and ajwain and give a good mix (see the video)

4 - Add ground channa dal and mix well until it all comes together, season with salt, mix

5 - lower the heat, cover and cook fro 5mins. give a mix in between

6 - Splash some water if its too dry, mix, cover and cook for next 5mins

7 - Add chopped cilantro, mix, heat off, cover and keep it for 5mins before serving.


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