Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Aluchi Wadi/Patra

Alu chi wadi or Patra is made from colocasia leaves. Beautifully shaped leaves resemble 'an elephant ear', a common name for colocasia leaves. Alu wadis can be steamed and stored in advance and fried as needed.A great side dish or in my case just a snack!

Follow from left to right.

6-8 alu chi pane (colocasia leaves)
1 cup gram flour
1 tea sp cayenne pepper
2-3 tb spoon grated jaggery
1/4-1/3 cup tamarind pulp (required to remove raphides, a throat irritant)
salt to taste
2-3 tb. spoon water

Wash the leaves and pat dry. Colocasia leaves have lot of stems running throughout the leaf and so it is hard to roll them. To make it easier later to roll, take a rolling pin and gently roll each leaf to flatten any big stems. Make sure not to tear the leaf.
         In a mixing bowl mix together gram flour, salt,cayenne pepper,jaggery and tamarind pulp. Add water little by little to make a thin paste. Paste shouldn't be runny but should wet enough to apply a thin layering on the leaf. The above given ingredients make 2 rolls (3-4 leaves each.) 
        Take the biggest leaf and lay it flat on the surface (preferably covered with plastic foil for an easy clean up later). Bright green side of the leaf should always be facing down. Apply thin layer of the gram flour mixture on the leaf. Take the second biggest leaf and keep it on top of the first leaf (now with the layer of the paste), again making sure bright green side is facing down. Apply another layer of the paste and repeat the process for 3-4 leaves in total. Its time to roll now. Follow the collage above for procedure of rolling. Each fold gets a coating of the gram flour mixture. Roll tightly to ensure it doesn't disintegrate later. Repeat this process to make another roll with 4 remaining leaves. I never take more than 4 leaves to make these as it gets harder to roll with more leaves. You may tie the roll with kitchen twine to make sure it doesn't fall apart while steaming.
    Steam for 10 minutes and remove from the heat. Let the rolls cool completely before cutting into pieces. Once cooled, cut into 1/2 inch thick pieces and deep fry. Serve immediately as the wadis have tendency to get soggy if kept for a longer time after frying.
   If you don't want to deep fry - heat 2 tablespoons oil in skillet on medium high heat. Add mustered seeds and let them crackle. Add cut pieces and shallow fry. Optional garnish - 2 tb spoons each chopped cilantro and shredded coconut

Colocasia leaves are known to cause an allergic reaction to the throat. Its more like an irritation. And so to cure that, you must have tamarind pulp in the recipe. I have an idea about the leaves that I grow, and so the quantity of tamarind mentioned in the recipe is suitable to me. If making this for the first time, add little more pulp just to be extra careful and adjust jaggery according to your taste.Even after this,if you have irritated throat, eat couple of tablespoon yogurt and the irritation will go away!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Dadpe Pohe

Dadpe pohe is classic Maharashtiran dish. It is my go to meal/snack of all times. Very quick to make and does not require any fancy ingredients.

1 and half cups patal pohe
1 medium tomato , chopped
1/3 medium onion, chopped
2-3 tablespoons freshly grated coconut
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 tea spoon sugar
salt to taste

For tempering:
1 tablespoon oil
1/4 tea spoon mustered seeds
pinch of asafoetida
1/4 tea spoon turmeric powder
1 chilli, diced into pieces
2 tablespoons peanuts

In a mixing bowl, mix together tomato,onion and salt and keep aside for 10 minutes. Salt helps to release the moisture from onions and tomatoes. Add pohe,grated coconut,sugar and cilantro and mix everything well. The idea is to soak pohe in the moisture from tomatoes and onions. Traditionally , coconut water was used to moisten pohe. If you don't have it, the moisture from tomatoes and onions is enough. Add 2-3 tablespoons water if needed. Keep aside for 15 minutes.
             To prepare the tempering, heat oil onto medium heat. Add mustered seeds and let them crackle. Add asafoetida,turmeric powder and chilies. Add peanuts and fry for couple of minutes. Add tempering to the pohe and mix well. Serve immediately with sprinkled sev on top. If you don't have sev, roasted plain urad papad crumbled into small pieces will do the trick!