Sunday, March 02, 2008


Serves 6 – 7.

3 -4 Litre capacity - Steel Deep Pot with lid.
Hand held or electric blender
Wooden Ladle Long handled
Cup styled Long handled - Steel/Metal Ladle (for tarka and serving)

1 - 2 Pints drinking water
400 – 500 Grams Yoghurt (Greek Style would be better).
½ - 1 Teaspoon Fresh Green Chillies (Pasted/mashed or ground)
½ - 1 Teaspoon Fresh Ginger (Medium Sized - Pasted/mashed or ground)
1 Clove Garlic (Medium Sized - Pasted/mashed or ground)
10 – 15 Curry Leaves (Kadhi patta)
1 Small bunch Fresh Coriander Washed and cleaned.

2 Table Spoons Gram flour (Besan)
¼ Teaspoon (Freshly ground) Pepper Powder
1 Teaspoon (Freshly ground) Cummins Powder
¼ Teaspoon (Freshly ground) Mustard Powder/Paste
A pinch or two of Turmeric Powder
¼ Teaspoon coarsely-ground dry fenugreeks
1 Tablespoon Ghee or 10 - 15 grams butter
½ Teaspoon Whole Cummins
6 - 8 Whole Mustard.
2-3 Pinches of Asafoetida Powder
1 -2 Teaspoon Sugar
Salt to taste.

First wash clean all the greens including garlic and ginger. Leave the coriander aside to drain. Paste or grate the Chillies, Ginger and garlic together or separately. I prefer it separately as I like it gingery and not garlicky. (You’ll develop your own tastes depending on how often you have it.).

Anyway, empty the Yoghurt in a deep pot. Add a cup of water to the yoghurt (leaving aside the rest to add later for right consistency). Add the Besan/Gram flour and blend it well. Then add green chillies, ginger and ½ of the garlic paste. Blend it all thoroughly either with a hand held or electric blender. Add the other spices i.e. pepper, Cummins, mustard, turmeric and a bit of fenugreek powder and run it all again through the blender. Add more water from what was set aside if necessary, stirring until you feel that the mixture is not runny.

(Make sure you haven’t left any bubbles of grams flour. If you notice just a few hold each on the wooden ladle in the mixture and press it with a teaspoon to blend it. But if there are many, sieve the mixture – add some of the sieved liquid to it and run it through the blender, put it back into the mixture).

Stir in the sugar and salt once you have the thoroughly blended mixture ready. Put it on medium heat stirring it all the time with the wooden ladle, making sure the flour doesn’t stick to the bottom. Lower the heat once it starts to boil and covering the pot with the lid. Very low heat is ideal to simmer, this will assist the besan flour cook in the mixture/kadhi. Still keep an eye so that it doesn’t boil over. If it oozes out you’ll lose the best bit + the taste. Simmer it covered for at least for 5 minutes. Switch off the heat after 5 minutes. The curry/kadhi will look very much like broth. But you’ll love the taste.

Meanwhile make ready the tarka, i.e. heat the ghee/butter in the metal ladle on low heat put the whole mustard. Move the ladle away from the heat as soon as the mustard starts to splatter. Quickly add the Cummins to it. The Cummins will start to brown when splattering. Drop in the curry leaves, ground fenugreeks and Asafoetida Powder immediately. Switch off the heat and carefully lower the ladle with all its contents straightaway in to the Curry/Kadhi pot, immediately covering it with the lid, not letting out the Tarka Aroma. Let it stand covered for at least 5-7 minutes. Pick leaves with edible stems off the fresh coriander to garnish the curry/kadhi. Do not chop it fine. You want to keep intact the coriander flavour too. So, just loosely break them with in a bowl and leave them aside to garnish the curry/kadhi just before serving.

Some people like the Curry/Kadhi slightly thick and some like it runny. But don’t worry if you’ve put a bit more water, as the Curry/Kadhi will thicken when boiled. That’s when you’ve actually achieved the right consistency. Careful!! Don’t add any water once it’s been boiled-cooked.

This item goes well with Spinach vegetable and rice with some roasted Papadoms. Many Gujaratis/Indians love this simple but tasty combination. It is full of nutrients. A pinch of plain cooked rice and spinach veg., or just the curry/kadhi and plain rice is a favourite of some Indians.

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