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Curried Tuna Salad Pani Puri

pani puri 2

This recipe is a fun take on the famous pani puri, a street snack that is popular in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and beyond. 

Going in a very untraditional direction, I stuffed store bought puri shells (find these at any South Asian grocery store, or large chain grocer in a South Asian neighbourhood – I get mine at Freshco in Kingston, ON) with a curried tuna salad, studded with South Asian ingredients like curry leaves, ginger, and spices. 

This is a very loose recipe. If you don’t happen to have curry leaves, simply replace them with something else… cucumber would work nicely, or maybe raisins. The chickpeas could easily be replaced with cubed boiled potatoes, or something else starchy. The most important spice in them is the curry blend, so if that’s all you have, simply forego the other spices. You could even make this with canned salmon, sardines, leftover chicken, shredded artificial crab meat, or shredded cabbage. Have some fun with it! 

  • Prep Time15 min
  • Ready in15-20 min
  • Yield12 shells
  • Serving Size6 each for lunch, 2 per person for appetizers


  • 1 can of tuna, drained 
  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons plain yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/2 teaspoon Indian chili powder
  • 20 curry leaves
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, minced
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro, chopped
  • 1 small, or 1/2 medium tomato, chopped
  • Juice of 1/2 a lime
  • 1/4 cup cooked or canned chickpeas
  • 12 pani puri shells, store bought
  • Fresh chilies or herbs for garnish



Mix together everything except the puri shells and the garnish. Make sure the tuna is well broken up and the sauce covers everything. 


Take a small spoon and crack open the top of a puri shell by tapping it through the cracker, creating an even-ish hole (think cracking a hard boiled egg). 

Spoon in the tuna filling until the shell is nearly overflowing. 

pani puri 3

Top with fresh chilies, cilantro, or mint, then repeat until all 12 are filled. 


Arrange on a platter and serve immediately so the shells stay crisp. Enjoy!

pani puri

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