A beautiful story by Meera Syal , a story of a punjabi Indian family trying to make a living and uphold tradition and culture and imbibe whatever little they can to their star , anita. The novel takes us on a journey with a young 9 year old Meera , her color , her friends , her growing up in a mining village, west Midlands , england in a predominantly white community. She comes to worship Anita , her neighbor . The novel speaks about certain characters having strong racist attitudes . For me , her grandmother’s character was the most adorable. reminded me of mine.
I dread making breads , somehow , I am judgmental about myself when it comes to breads, I simply cant picture myself doing it or believing I can do it. I almost settled on this before I blew out some air , decided to risk my day in the kitchen and took up the challenge and thankfully succeeded in making Nupur’s Laadi Paav. I am happy that I tried . It has been an icebreaker for me .
Has this ever happened to you that when a family member goes grocery shopping and gets all that he or she wants in abundance that you run out of ideas what to do with it . Well , it happens to me more often than not. K loves his Band Gobi and Phool Gobi so much that a couple of days ago , my man turns up from the shopping with 2 cabbages and 3 cauliflowers. Whew! trust a man to do your grocery shopping just the way you want! . I was bored after I made this and this and then some more . So I call my pedatha and ask her what to do , she opens her treasure chest and lets out another nugget for me to share with you all. I could make it and not worry about wasting the vegetable or throwing it. I have eaten it before at her place and always wondered how she could turn such a pungent vegetable into such a delicious pickle.
Banaras , being a historical city and India’s oldest and a holy city for Hindus and Jains is also know for its silk. No wedding trousseau is complete without a Banarasi Saree in Northern India. The Silk business is dominated by the Marwaris who are strict vegetarians who have normally a Maharaj/ Maharajan( professional Brahmin cook) to cook for them in their kitchens. There are many vegetarian families who still do not use garlic or onions in their cooking and inspite of that dish up quite a feast.
I am aware of certain dishes when it comes to maharashtrian cuisine as both my mother and mother in law grew up in maharashtra during their formative years. But I havent ventured much into this regional cooking except for koshimbirs, pithlay and zunka…
Well, I decided to try this restaurant special Vegetable Kolhapuri and of course Koshimbir , which I think is a soul satisfying relish! My entry to Nupur’s RCI – Maharashtrian cuisine, Originally concieved by Lakshmi of Veggie Cuisine
For the Vegetable Kolhapuri
1/2 cup of Beans
1/2 cup of cauliflower florets
1/2 cup of carrots
1/2 cup of peas
3 tomatoes finely chopped
1 medium sized onion finely chopped
For the Paste:
1/4 cup dessicated coconuted(unsweetened)
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
1 table spoon khus khus ( poppy seeds)
1 teaspoon ginger paste
3 red chillies
For the popu/tadka/seasoning
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon hing
1.Do the popu, tadka /seasoning by adding oil in a skillet and adding mustard and cumin seeds. Once the pop, add the onions and saute until pink.
2. Boil the vegetables and keep aside , dry roast the poppy seeds and add the sesame seeds and grind all the ingredients to a paste. The poppy seeds should be ground first and then the remain ingredients should be added, else the poppy seeds wont crush properly.
3.Once the onions turn pink, add the paste and the diced tomatoes and cook until done or the oil separates. Add all the vegetables and cook until they blend well. remove and serve hot with rotis.
Koshimbirs are the soul satisfying relishes according to me, I can just eat them as a main course and be done with it. I did not make the traditional peanut koshimbir but instead opted for the yogurt one.
I added carrots instead of tomatoes and of course onions were always there.
Take 2 cups of curd and whisk until there are no lumps, add 1/2 cup of finely diced onions and 1/2 cup of finely chopped or grated carrot , salt to taste.
For the tadka, add oil in a vessel, half a teaspoon of mustard seeds, a pinch of hing and also cayenne pepper. Once done, slowly add to the curd mixture and lo! the koshimbir is done.