Thursday, March 23, 2006

A Vegetarian Recipe

Anonymous asked me to come up with a vegetarian recipe so here I am trying to cook up one. Now that I sit and try to think of something I am quite blank. Yesterday the egg man knocked and said that all is fine with bird flu and I promptly bought a dozen eggs and now all I can think of are egg recipes! Besides Bengalis cannot think vegetarian so this is indeed a challenge. Here goes...

Lou Ghonto (Bottle Gourd Mish Mash)
(I have no idea how to translate 'Ghonto'!)

You need
1 longish bottle gourd (lauki)
3/4 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp sugar
1 bunch coriander leaves
4 slit green chilies
2 tbsp oil (mustard oil is preferable)
Salt to taste
Handful Mung Dal vadi (optional)

Peel the bottle gourd (reserve the peels which you can fry with potato peels, poppy seeds and onion later) and chop into small cubes. Heat oil till hot, reduce flame and add cumin seeds. Add the bottle gourd when the cumin seeds are fragrant. Cover and forget about it for a while. Lots of water will come out, allow the vegetable to cook in its own liquids on a low flame till the water reduces. Add salt, sugar, coriander and green chilies, stir, cover and cook for a few minutes. Additionally fried mung dal vadi can be crushed and sprinkled over the vegetable to give it some crunch.


The Comic Project said...

hey hey..non-readymade tamarind rice recipe - this is recipe for paste:
1.Handful of Tamarind..soak in a little water for an hour. Get thick imli extract out of it. How depends on you. You may also want to try talking to it
2.Red mirchi 7-8 depending on how hot you want it - break into 2-3 pieces each
3.Peanuts-lightly fried
4.Adrak - 1 adrak piece broken and smashed into several
5.Udad dal, Chana dal, Rai, Hing

Ek frying pan or kadai me cooking oil daaliye aur use garam hone deejiye. When the oil is hot (hathoda maar do .. oops), put the chana dal (first) then rai then udad dal and sprinkle LG ka hing. Peanuts go in next...wait for a couple of minutes and then the lal mirchi and adrak. Fry the combo for 2-3 minutes - a good sign that it is time to move ahead is when you start coughing.

Pour the tamarind extract into the pan and stir..stir..stir..make sure it doesnt stick..add a little water from time to time..and of course salt and sugar (jaggery preferable) to taste and heat the mixture for about 15 minutes. The key is that it looks like paste and is not watery, and the oil should float - yeah it will be a little oily but that's how the lal mirchi will be neutralized. No - dont put less mirchi. Doesnt work that way.

It will take you a couple of attempts to get it right. It will be dark brown in colour, a little oil floating and when you taste it, be prepared for a combination of something tangy, something hot(you dont have to eat it, just squeeze the mirchi to get some more of the extract hehe), something sweet and it feels amazing to bite into those peanuts.

This can be mixed with rice (tamarind rice you have), eaten with idli or dosa :-) chapati too.

Hope you have fun.

A slight change in combination will give you something different: Use green mirchi instead of red, use imli water (not thick extract). The rest remains the same :-)

There you go, a TCP recipe

Cloudy said...

Came here via TCP's blog :-)

Amazing recipe TCP! Start a cooking blog too? I have failed MISERABLY every time I tried the non-readymade paste tam rice. (Everyone was forced to eat though)

Anonymous said...

Thanks! I tried cooking and failed!. It went dry. Strange that bottle gourds did not feel like complying to me.
I should have known while peeling it, bottle gourd was thick and stubborn.