Tag Archives: rice

World Palate Recipes: Maharashtrian Recipes

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I am from Mumbai (British called it Bombay) and Maharashtrian food consists of Pulses, Usaal or sprouts, Koshimbeer or salad, and Roti/ Bhakri made from cereals like Jowar, Bajra and wheat. Geography of the region and local culture play its part on the the cuisine. Rice is grown in coastal Maharshtra and is widely eaten there, whereas, Bhakri is staple food on the central Deccan plateau where millets and cereal are grown. Maharastrian desserts are: Shrikand, Puran Poli, Modak, and Jalebi.  For rustic, street food served up on beaches, railway platforms or roadside stalls on highways – it’s the ever popular Bhel puri , Vada Pao, and JhunkaBhakri.

See here for Street food Vada Pao

See here for Mumbai blogpost

Every Indian kitchen has a traditional ‘spice box’ or Masala Dabba, a very important part of an Indian kitchen. Sometimes, it’s a hand-me-down from your mother or your  mother-in-law. It is even given along as parting or house warming gift along other kitchen items to set up the new bride’s  home. The Masala Dabba  stores fresh ‘Tadka’ or tempering ingredients: mustard, cumin, dry red chillies, turmeric, fenugreek or methi, assorted lentils, sesame seeds or peanuts.

Traditional Spice box or Masala Dabba

Traditional Spice box or Masala Dabba

I requested my Maharashtrian friends to share their recipes, as they too follow my blog. Hope my other readers will be inspired to share or post comments from around the world!

Guest Post -1 

Suchitra is my childhood friend from Mumbai. Growing up together we played girl’s cricket, hide-n-seek, Antakshari – a song game, and enjoyed endless cups of chai and chocolate milk shakes during sleep-overs. Past 20 years, Suchitra lives in the USA and is an exceptionally high-spirited and a passionate cook. She caters, cooks for friends and family and even conducts classes ! Thanks Suchitra.

You can find her on Culture Club : http://iipdigital.usembassy.gov/st/english/inbrief/2012/04/201204043326.html#axzz2jB8H2LaH

Masale Bhaat or Spiced Rice (Maharashtrian Style)

2 1/2 cups rice ( Preferably Basmati)
5 cups water (Hot)
3-4 tsp oil
1/2 tsp. Mustard seeds
1/4 tsp. Hing ( Asafoetida)
1 tsp. Haldi (turmeric )
1-2 green Chillies
1sprig of Curry leaves (Kadhi Patta Leaves)
1-1/2 tsp. Bhaji Aamti Masala
1/2 tsp. Jaggery (Gud)
1cup Tendli / Tindora sliced long (see picture below)
Salt to taste
Garnish
fresh (Frozen) grated coconut, ghee(optional), cilantro, lime.
Sliced Tendli /Tindora vegetable

Sliced Tendli /Tindora vegetable

Method:
Step 1
Soak rice in water for 1-2 hours
Step 2
Strain the rice and remove all the water before making the Masale Bhaat.
Step 3
In a pan add oil. Let it heat up.
Add mustard seeds. when they pop, lower the heat and add hing, haldi. Add chillies and curry leaves. (Keep a lid handy, cover the pan before adding chillies and curry leaves).Add the sliced Tindora ( Gherkins)
Step 4
Add the rice to the Tadka (Tempering)
Mix it well, saute for 3-4 min. Add the Masala. Stir well.
Step 5
Add 5 cups hot cups. Add salt, stir well.
Let it come to a boil. Add Jaggery (brown sugar). Lower the heat, put a lid on the pan. Check after 7-10 minutes.                      Masale Bhaat will be ready to serve. Garnish it with freshly (thawed) coconut, cilantro, lime and ghee.
Cucumber Koshimbeer or Cucumber Salad
3-4 Cucumbers (English or Pickling). If using pickling cucumbers then take 5-6
3/4 cup roasted, crushed peanuts
1-2 Green Chillies
salt, Sugar to taste
lime juice (about 1 lime)
1/4 cup Cilantro
Vegetables for Koshimbeer recipe
Ingredients for Tadka or Chonka (Seasoning)
Ghee about 1-1 1/2 tsp.
 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
 
Method:
Step 1
Peel the cucumber, chop them small. Crush the peanuts and chillies.

Step 2

In a medium size bowl add the chopped cucumbers, crushed peanuts, lime juice. Add Cilantro. Toss together
Step 3
In a smallest pan, heat the ghee, when it comes to the smoking point, turn off the flame and add Cumin seeds.
The seeds should make a popping sound and splutter in the ghee. Pour it over the Cucumber mixture.
Step 4
When you are ready to serve add the salt and sugar. Toss it together and serve. *If you add salt and sugar too early the cucumber has the tendency to get watery and soggy. We want the salad to be crisp.
chopping cucumbers finely

chopping cucumbers finely

I do the Koshimbeer bit differently:

I love fresh green Mung sprouts, they add protein into my diet. So I tend to toss it up with the traditional Koshimbeer recipe and give it a twist.  Fresh grated coconut sweetens the taste. Crunch, crunch , crunch —  sprouts, cucumber, peanuts !

Cucumber Koshimbeer

Cucumber Koshimbeer

Guest Post – 2 

Manisha is another Maharashtrian friend, who lives in Hyderabad. A teacher by profession she manages her home artistically and spiritually. She is learning to use the technology and enjoys reading Marathi literature. She share here a recipe, though not made in Maharashtrian cuisine

Aloo Kofta curry (Kofte is a Persian /Arabic word for meat or vegetable balls, soaked in a curry) Ingredients:

Aloo / Potato – mashed 100 gm
Dudhi /Bottle Gourd grated 250 gm
Paneer 120 gm
Green chilli 10 gm,
Green coriander 10 gm
Salt 5 gm
Cornflour 20 gm
Aloo wafer gravy 250 gm,
Cashew nuts 20 gm,
Khoya / Condensed thickened milk -30 gm,
Spinach leaves 50 gm.
Gravy with Potato Wafers 

Crush the potato wafers in the mixer to make a semi -solid crush.

Lightly roast some wheat flour / Atta to golden brown and  mix with turmeric, cardamom powder, and roasted cumin powder, a little sugar and a cup of milk. Remove all this from mixer and adjust the water for consistency and juice of  half lemon .Vegetable gravy is ready for use.
Method:
1. Peel and grate gourd and boil in just enough water to make it tender.
2. Grate paneer, mix it with Aloo/ Potato  mashed & grated gourd.
3. Add salt ,pepper powder , & corn flour . Knead it like dough and form into small Kofte balls of 30 gm.approx.
4. Stuff the balls with khoya , cashew nut & raisins.
5. Deep fry the koftas in cooking oil till golden-brown colour.
6. In separate pan heat some butter /oil and add minced spinach. Saute for 2/3 min
7. Add prepared Wafer gravy and cook till first boil.
8. Add koftas gently into the gravy. Also add a little water to adjust the consistency. Cook  for 2 min.
9.Garnish with green coriander and serve hot with rice.
If you wish to share your recipes or travel anecdotes , do let me know. 

All content and images copyright Veena S. (2013 -2020) http://www.walktomarket.wordpress.com. Please see copyright disclaimer.

World Palate Recipe: Andhra/Indian Tamarind Rice

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In South Indian cooking, food is usually rice based like Idli, Pongal, Adai, Parvannam and Pulihoara. Puli means tamarind, and is abundantly used to flavour many a curry, chutney and rice. It is an essential ingredient in cooking, the pods hang from the big trees during winter and are then harvested and sold in markets during the hot summer. The sharp, tangy taste of tamarind when blended with dry, red chillies and salt –gives a unique, mouth watering, fiery flavourful chutney.

Hyderabad capital of Telengana and Andhra Pradesh twin states has a melange of cuisines, owing to its rich Deccani- Mughal history. Aromatic, spicy, meat and chiken based Mughlai food contrasts with the more subtle, sattvic vegetarian Telugu Brahmin cuisine.

Credit goes to my Mother-in-law for teaching me this Telugu recipe. Often, she made this for puja orprayer offerings, especially on Saturday, to Lord Perumal / Vishnu . It’s a family favourite, and I have learned to prepare it well now for prayer time as well as for friends and relatives.

Indian Spices for Rice preparation

Indian Spices for Pulihoara Rice preparation

Ingredients 

1 cup Indian rice (medium grain)

1 1/2 cup water

3 tsp. cooking oil

Tamarind pulp – preferably brown coloured (small lemon sized ball)

8-10 curry leaves (almost a must!)

2 dry red chillies (adjust to your taste)

1 tsp. mustard seeds

1 tsp. turmeric

Pinch of Asatoefida (Hing) – available in Indian grocery stores

Salt to taste

For garnish: (optional)

2 tsp. roasted Sesame seeds

2 tsp. roasted Peanuts

Coriander stalk / Curry leaves

Banana leaf or prayer plate

Turmeric sprinkled over cooked rice

Turmeric sprinkled over cooked rice

Method

Wash rice thoroughly and discard the coloured water. Cook rice with measured water in rice cooker /stove top/ pressure cooker. Add a drop of oil so that the cooked grains are loose and fluffy. Once cooked, immediately run a fork through it and loosen grains and pour onto big, flat dish to cool. Apply some turmeric powder and salt and leave aside.

In a deep pan /wok /kadhai pour some oil and let it warm. Add mustard seeds, dry chilli, half amount of peanuts, remaining turmeric, curry leaves and splutter this. Take care! Cover quickly if necessary and switch off gas. Let cool.

In a small bowl add quarter glass water and soak the tamarind (without seeds). Microwave for 1 minute and mash the pulp. Cool it. Roast peanuts and sesame seeds, remove any skin and cool.

Next part – Mixing of rice and the mixtures by hand is the most therapeutic and divine indulgence. Refrain from using a fork or ladle, if you can. Chant, for better results.

Pour the oil mixture, tamarind pulp, half of peanut /sesame seeds onto the cooled rice. Using your hand or fork lightly toss and mix it all. Adjust salt to taste. Take a small round bowl, wash with water lightly. Pour the rice mixture into it and press lightly. Keep a large prayer plate or serving plate ready, line it with washed banana leaf, if you fancy. Invert the rice bowl on plate, tap gently. Out pops the coloured rice. Garnish with rest of the toasted peanuts, sesame and curry leaves.

Place food at altar to offer, if you wish. Share and enjoy the tangy flavour with a cup of cool yoghurt. It sure drives the summer heat away.

                               

       ‘A great introduction to cultures is their cuisine. It not only reflects their evolution, but also their beliefs and traditions.’                                                 Vikas Khanna, Michelin star Indian Chef   

Pulihoara prasadam

Another version of this rice by Subbu can be found here

All content and images copyright Veena S. (2013 -2020) http://www.walktomarket.wordpress.com. Please see copyright disclaimer.