Saturday, 27 June 2020

Raw mango subzi with spicy coconut seasoning/ Mavina kai palya/ Nekkare mavina palya

Mango, King of fruits! Enjoy them in all the possible ways before this season ends! You will get varieties of them just meant to consume as ripe fruit to raw as vegetables too. Especially the multiple varieties of wild mangoes are used in number of sweet & savory side dishes & curries. They make the meal tasty & make you crave for more
Here is one of the delicacies from coastal Karnataka, which is Mango stir-fry in a spice mix of fried urad dal, red chillis in coconut. A best suited variety of mango for this subzi is called Nekkare mavu/ HoLe mavu which is a wild mango with pleasant & unique flavor. This palya can be made not only with matured raw mango but also ripe wild mango. Check for my post of ripe mango palya.
This dish reminds me of my childhood summer holidays & my aunts (paternal). They used to stay with us for few days & make this & many mango & jack fruit dishes with mom and we all used to relish with so much of fun. All those are evergreen memories, immeasurable pleasure!
If you get any wild variety of raw or ripe mango, you can use that. Check for the recipe of ripe mango subzi here. I tried it with totapuri here and sharing the recipe now.

Raw mango subzi with spicy coconut seasoning

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
Serves: 4
Raw totapuri mango (matured) – 1 (big)
Grated coconut – ¼ cup
Urad Dal/ Black gram dal – 2 tsp
Red chillis – 3
Grated Jaggery – 4 tbsp/ big chunk, adjust according to the taste. It needs more jaggery.
Salt – to taste
Coconut Oil or any cooking oil – 2 tbsp
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Curry leaves

  • Wash mango clean, remove & discard stalk part. Cut  into small pieces.
  • Now take a frying pan or wok. Fry urad dal, 2 red chillis by adding few drops of oil until dal turns brown and you get a nice roasted aroma. Do not burn any ingredient. Add grated fresh coconut & sauté couple of times. Switch off the stove.
  • Dry grind the fried ingredients coarsely, when it cools down. Keep aside.
  • In the same frying pan, heat oil, add mustard seeds &1 red chilli broken into rough pieces. Allow spluttering.
  • Add chopped mangoes (with seeds), salt, jaggery and required water to cook. Cook it well by covering the pan. Once done, add ground paste or coconut mixture. Mix well, allow until water evaporates completely. Garnish with curry leaves.
  • Serve the palya with hot rice, ghee or with curd rice and enjoy.
Mavina kai palya
  • It tastes good even with little gravy like gojju.
Nekkare mavina palya

Tuesday, 9 June 2020

Making buttermilk, butter & ghee at home/ Homemade butter from milk/ Homemade ghee

Who doesn’t love the aroma of freshly made ghee at home? Making curds, butter & ghee at home is worth for the pleasure that it gives to one though the effort making it is big! Just give it a try just for the satisfaction that it brings the one soon after that fresh aroma of ghee fills your home!

Making buttermilk, butter & ghee at home

Even I used to feel as if it is a huge task until recent, but now I am used to it on regular basis and I make it happily! Back in my childhood, churning curds to make buttermilk was an everyday affair at home. My mom used to milk every morning and evening, filter, boil it and make big pot of curds everyday with leftover milk after daily use. Next morning churn with a manual churner, collect butter, clean and keep adding with fresh butter eery day for maximum a week’s time. Use that butter to make ghee. Fresh buttermilk was consumed either by family members, farm workers or shared to relatives when required for a function feast or any other occasion. If excess it used to go to the bio gas (sustainable energy for cooking) plant! It is the practice still existing in native at my mom’s placeJ
Oh my, it is unimaginable in the urban lifestyle that we follow today. We buy milk with which we may not get enough milk cream to make butter every day. In this case we can collect cream for 5-6 days in refrigerator and use it for the process. I am sharing my method of making buttermilk & butter in this post. I get freshly milked milk daily from a farmer, so quality of milk is better too. The measure of butter may not be the same in case of packed milk! You can use full fat milk here instead.

Finally, I don't waste the ghee residue (brown meal formed after making ghee), it goes either in my chapathi/roti or Ghee residue cake. Using the vessel used for making ghee while kneading dough or making cake batter helps in cleaning it as well.

Homemade butter

I am not making ingredients list here as major ingredient involved in here is milk & curds! Majorly there are 2 steps involved here.

1. Making of curds
2. Making butter & ghee from the curds


1. Making Curds:
  • Boil milk very well and allow cooling.
  • On cooling completely, a layer of fresh cream will be formed on top. Collect it with a spoon or with your fingers (if you are comfortable), transfer to a stainless steel box or jar with lid. Add a spoonful of curds and refrigerate.
  • If you make the curds at home and you get some leftover curds every day after using it, then collect it in a separate jar too and refrigerate that as well.
  • Every day follow the above procedure and add cream daily to the already collected cream.

2. Making of buttermilk & butter:

  • After 4-5 days, keep the box with the collected cream outside the refrigerator.  Add one more spoon of curds and mix well, keep covered to make curds. You should make it the previous night of the day you plan to make buttermilk.
  • Next morning, refrigerate it for an hour or two (cooling this helps to get butter to separate out from the buttermilk cleanly).
  • Now, it is the time to churn this creamy curds to make buttermilk. You can use a hand blender/ mixie jar (juice jar)/ mathana (the one I use which is very comfortable for me). If you have very less curds, then mixie jar is a best option (It should be leak free).
  • Take all the collected cream and curds stored everyday together, blend until butter is separated on top of buttermilk as ball (solid state).
  • Now take hot water (should be able to touch with fingers) in a wide bowl. Dip your hand in it, and collect the butter formed on buttermilk. Transfer only collected butter to a thick bottomed pan in which you make ghee. Dipping hand in hot water helps to avoid sticking of butter to your hand.
  • Now wash the butter thoroughly in clean running water for 3-4 times or until traces of buttermilk removed completely from butter.  The washed water should start running clean! Dip palm in hot water while doing this as well.
  • Transfer the prepared buttermilk to a clean vessel and store in refrigerate which can be used to drink by making masala buttermilk or used in cooking too.
  • Now heat cleaned butter in pan on medium flame. Initially it starts frothing which starts reducing. You can stir with a spoon in between.
  • It is done when the hissing noise comes down and you start seeing brown ghee residue in bottom of the pan.
  • You should take extra care at this point as even after switching off, with the hotness, it boils for a while and ghee may be burnt if you don’t switch off the heat on time.
  • If it is not boiled properly, then the aroma may not remain good for long time.
  • After switching off the heat, allow cooling for a while. Pass it through a sieve to separate the ghee residue and collect the freshly made ghee in a steel container with a lid or in a glass jar. You can refrigerate it on completely cooling or use immediately which stays good even outside refrigerator for a week or two.
Homemade ghee

  • People add few curry leaves or beetle leaves while making ghee from butter. It is believed to be keep ghee fresh for long. I prefer without anything. If steps are followed properly while making & storing and butter is cleaned well, then ghee remains fresh with nice aroma.
  • Make sure you churn cream the very next day of keeping it out of refrigerator. Otherwise, buttermilk turns bitter and the smell of ghee doesn’t turn good. You can postpone 1-2 days to churn it out by keeping the cream in refrigerator until then.
  • Images I shared here is of ghee made with beetle leaves, whereas I don't follow it in my regular method. After a week, the flavor of beetle leaf starts dominating over ghee aroma!
  • Keeping the dishes to store curds, butter, ghee etc.. very clean is important. Otherwise, the aroma that you expect may not be achieved.
  • Use hot water to wash vessels involved in making dairy products.
  • Store ghee in stainless steel boxes or glass jars with tight lid.
Homemade butter from milk

Wednesday, 3 June 2020

Hing ki Kachori/ Hing kachori

Name is Hing Kachori/ hing ki kachori, but there is no big part is taken by hing/ asafoetida in this dish. Basically it is spicy urad dal mix stuffed poori with some amount of hing added.  
It was about 5-6 years back while I was working for a software firm, we used to have nice time during lunch break with 4 of us. Our group had one from Kolkata, one from Kashmir & other ‘re from Karnataka. We were usually discussing about food and I learnt few dishes including Thai salads then. One of the dish I have heard for the first time was this Hing kachori. It was in my to-do since then, but somehow I could not try it! May be due to the reason I am not well versed with stuffing things, I avoid even stuffed parotas. Recently I tried it and it is not as difficult as I imagined. It turned to be delicious too. I served it with stuffed tomatoes/ bharwan tamatar. Used urad dal here, I guess it can be made with tur dal  as well. Yet to try that out!

Hing ki Kachori

Preparation time: 6 hours
Cooking time: 30 -45 minutes
Serves: 16 medium pooris.

Urad dal – ½ cup
Ginger – ¼ inch
Green chillis – 1-2
Fennel seeds/ saunf – 1 tsp (optional), good to have
Salt – 1 tsp
Sugar – 1 tsp
Asafotida/ hing – ¼ tsp
Garam masala – ½ tsp, adjust according to your taste
Chilli powder – ½ tsp, adjust according to your taste
Maida/ all purpose flour/ wheat flour – 2 cups, I used (1+1 wheat & maida)
Cooking oil – 3 tsp + for deep frying

  • Wash & soak dal for 5-6 hours.
  • Once done, drain water, wash once again with clean water.
  • Take green chilli, ginger, fennel seeds in a mixie jar. Grind to make smooth paste.
  • Add soaked dal to the same jar. Add garam masala, chilli powder, ½ tsp salt, sugar. Grind coarsely. If required you can sprinkle little water, not too much.
  • Heat a pan with 2 tsp oil. Add asafoetida/ hing. Add ground paste, fry it until it is bit dry.
  • Switch off the heat, set aside to cool down.  This is our stuffing.
  • Now, in a wide mixing bowl add maida and wheat, little salt and 1 tsp oil. Knead to make soft poori dough by adding water as required.
  • Keep it covered for 15 minutes.
  • Divide dal mix into equal sized balls (about gooseberry sized).
  • Similarly, divide poori dough into equal number of balls.
  • Heat oil (2 cups) in a frying pan.
  • Roll wheat ball to make thick small poori, place one dal ball on it, cover it to stuff properly. Roll again to make poori of medium thickness which is evenly pressed all over.
  • Fry poori in hot oil, flipping in between to cook both sides. Remove from oil when it turns golden brown. Use medium flame for frying.
  • Same way, finish off all the balls.
  • Serve hot poori/ kachori with choice of side dish.
Hing kachori