Get Ahead reader Prajakta, 27, works as a Project Manager for Cisco Systems Inc in the US. She shares two of her favourite recipes that could help spice up any rainy day. Want to share a recipe?
Maharashtrian food is highly underrated. Only a few dishes have made it to the hall of fame, the two most popular ones probably being Malvani Kombadi Vade and Kolhapuri Sukhe Mutton.
However, Maharashtra is a diverse state and brings a diversity of cuisine to the table.
Today I'd like to share two mouth-watering recipes traditionally cooked by the Chandraseniya Kayashtha Prabhu caste from Maharashtra.
Vaala Che Birdhe
This is basically a curry made of field beans or kadwe vaal.
1 cup field beans or kadwe vaal
1 tsp cumin or jeera seeds
1 tsp mustard or rai seeds
A dash of asafetida or hing
1 tsp turmeric or haldi powder
1 medium-sized onion
Red chilly powder as desired
1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
1 twig of curry leaves
1 tbsp jaggery
1 tbsp coriander-cumin powder
� cup freshly grated coconut
� cup coconut milk
� cup green coriander or cilantro leaves
2 kokum or 1 teaspoon of tamarind paste
1 tbsp oil
Salt to taste
Wash and soak the field beans in plenty of water for two days. Next day, drain out the water and securely tie the field beans in a tight muslin cloth. Keep it moist and place it in warm place until they sprout. Once they sprout, soak the field beans in tepid water. The skin of the beans will start becoming loose. After a while, peel off the skin from the beans.
Wash the beans and drain out all water.
Marinate the field beans with ginger-garlic paste, half a tablespoon of coriander-cumin powder and keep aside.
Also chop up the onion and the coriander leaves and keep aside
Place a deep-bottomed pot on the burner and add oil, mustard, cumin, curry leaves and asafetida. Let it splutter for a few moments. Add the chopped onion and saut� it for a while, until the onion becomes translucent. Add turmeric and red chilly powder and give it a quick stir.
Add the marinated field beans and stir it gently, making sure that the bean sprouts are not damaged. Add some water and cover the utensil with a lid. Check intermittently until field beans are tender.
Now add salt, jaggery and kokum, the remaining coriander-cumin powder and let it simmer. After two minutes, add coconut milk and give it a rapid boil, making sure not to overcook the beans. Switch off the heat. Garnish with coriander and grated coconut.
Vangi Batata Sode Ghalun
This dish can be made with brinjal or eggplant. It is basically a potato curry with dried shrimp.
6 small round brinjals/eggplants
2 medium-sized potatoes
� cup dried shrimp or sode
1 tsp ginger-garlic-green chilly paste
1tbsp tamarind paste
� tsp turmeric
2 tsp chilly powder
1 onion diced
1 tsp garam masala
2 tbsp coconut
1 tbsp jaggery
2 tbsp chopped coriander
Wash and slit the brinjals; do not completely cut them in half. Immerse the slit brinjals in salted water to prevent oxidation. Chop the potatoes into medium sized cubes and immerse them in salt water as well. In a bowl mix the dried shrimp, ginger-garlic-green chilly paste, tamarind, turmeric, a pinch of salt, and red chilly powder. Marinate for half an hour.
In a deep skillet, add oil and shallow fry the marinated dried shrimp until semi-cooked.
Then mix the the semi-cooked dried shrimp with coconut, chopped onion, jaggery, salt and garam masala in another dish. Stuff this mixture into the slit brinjals.
In the same skillet, add little oil and gently drop the stuffed brinjals along with potatoes. Add sufficient water and let the brinjals/eggplant and potatoes cook completely.
Garnish with fresh grated coconut and chopped coriander. Serve hot with roti or rice.
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