From the garden to the kitchen table! Space and time are such a treat in a busy city life.
Having planted radish seeds about a month ago, we have been watching the growth, leaf by leaf. The fresh young leaves were crunchy and tart, and I munched them off, sometimes, early morning garden therapy. I know the leaves are a storehouse of minerals and reward you literally cleaning up the stomach as they secrete acidic beneficial juices during digestion.
Radish are a North Indian winter crop. Acres of farms along the fertile Yamuna river bank are a picturesque green in rich hues. Radish, carrot, cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, beets and spinach all the leaves have a different green colour and texture. Can an artist match his palette to Nature? Experiments at home to grow carrot and radish looked quite promising as fresh leaves sprung from seeds. Soon bulbous white radish peeked from the ground beneath, our eyes popped gleefully too!
Then came a mild cyclone Nivar. Rain filled the Earth. Aahh! Nature wins!
Operation Chop Up! Garden to kitchen counter. Gas stove to blog!
I tweaked my mother’s recipe. She used spring onions and their leaves to make a dry vegetable with chick pea flour, adding an extra dash of oil for tempering. I substituted with fresh radish leaves, added some crunchy roasted peanuts for nutrition and served with hot roti or parathas.
A bunch of radish leaves ( about 200-250 gms)
1 cup chickpea flour
1 big ladle cooking oil ( add extra if reqd.)
mustard seeds, ajwain, red chillies, hing or asoetifida (optional), turmeric, salt as necessary, handful of roasted peanuts (optional if allergic!)
Check underside, clean, wash and pat dry leaves with young stalks. Chop finely. Roast peanuts and keep aside. Prepare ingredients for tempering.
In a pan or wok, heat oil, add ajwain, mustard seeds, turmeric, asatoefida, and crushed dry red chilles. Stir fry, add peanuts, stir. Add the chopped greens and salt. Stir.
Quickly add the chickpea /besan flour spoon by spoon, keep stirring, remove lumps if any. Add a dash of oil. Cover and cook for 2-3 minutes. Flour tends to go dry, so sprinkle few drops of water or add oil, cook well.
Place in a bowl and serve warm with hot rotis or parathas….or just nibble away this nutritious, crunchy vegetable, by itself! Any left over leaves can be chopped and added to wheat flour to make parathas…on another day.
It’s almost year end. What’s cooking in your kitchen or growing in your garden? Share your pictures if you do cook this recipe or tweak it to your taste.