Saturday, 11 October 2014

Sindhi Tomato Kadhi..my little twist to the traditional affair!

I am a principled person.  A true fun loving, jovial & a crazy being who has a deeper side of character residing within her. I value ethics more than anything. Its not just a perception but a religion which i sacredly follow. Yes i do...Indeed! Its something that's completely intrinsic of my persona. A nature that has evolved over years of maturation in undulated trajectory of life. I have learnt to be calm & controlled when at the zenith of success and grasped from my failures, that mistakes acknowledged must not be repeated. Trust, Life's all about learning. 

I live to learn new things. Embarked on the journey called Life, I crave to widen my knowledge & share my findings with people around. That's my purpose of being here! One of the poems which i had studied years back and is undoubtedly my favorite , aptly sums up my philosophy of Life.

I am a part of all that I have met;Yet all experience is an arch wherethro'
Gleams that untravell'd world whose margin fades, For ever and forever when I move.
How dull it is to pause, to make an end,To rust unburnish'd, not to shine in use!
As tho' to breathe were life! Life piled on life.

Were all too little, and of one to me. Little remains: but every hour is saved
From that eternal silence, something more,A bringer of new things; and vile it were
For some three suns to store and hoard myself,

And this gray spirit yearning in desire, To follow knowledge like a sinking star,
Beyond the utmost bound of human thought.  - Ulysses, By Alfred Lord Tennyson 

My mom's my Guru! I remember her tell me always 'There is no age bar when it comes to learning. Hamesha bas koshish karo ki kuch naya seekho aur aage badho. Main aaj bhi seekhne ki ichcha aur koshish karti hoon'. The guiding star who has taught me and made me learn the right things that essential for the perfect proud living sans any sham. Maa, I love you! I am truly blessed to have you.

Today's post is a dedication to my yearning over new avenues..new learnings..Cooking is very dear to me and i desire to create varied delicacies irrespective of the region or culture. Right attitude to learn! Not caught up in any kind of inhibitions. So, this time i have ventured into 'Sindhi Tomato Kadhi' preparation, something that i had years years ago..and just once. Did not get fortunate enough to savor it again, though i was always on a look out for a right source of information for the recipe, yet it took me so long to find the perfect recipe from a perfect source (True that, i am a finicky person when it comes to recipes especially). Cooking is a delight and i don't venture into any new stuff (ofcourse i innovate and experiment but then sometimes one needs to have ones fundas straight, to start off at least) until i know that the recipe reads perfect and is relevant to my needs and whims. :) 

Neelam, a dear friend in one of my FB groups promptly posted the recipe on my request and guess what, i could not wait to try it! The very same day, it was all cooked, ready and served with a bit of hanky panky to the original share. My dearest husband was taken up by a storm with the flavors and aromas...Aaahhh! a sigh of satisfaction!!


Ingredients:-

1 Cup Tomato Puree
3 tbsp Besan
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp asafoetida
1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds  (methi seeds)
Sprigs of curry leaves
1 drumstick (cut into 2 inch piece lengthwise)
7-8 lady's finger (cut into 1 inch piece lengthwise)
2 potatoes (cut into big cubes)
1 big carrot (peeled and cut into 1/4 inch discs)
1-1/2 tbsp tamarind pulp
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp grated ginger
1 - 2 finely chopped green chillies
Spices needed - Turmeric, coriander powder, red chilli, salt as per taste
Oil for deep frying
2 tbsp Oil for tempering the kadhi 
3 cups water
Coriander for garnish

Steps to follow:-

Tomato puree

Boil some water in a pan and put 7-8 tomatoes in it and blanch till soft & supple. Turn off the gas once done. Let it cool. Once they have cooled down, peel off their skin and blitz till the fine texture. Further you can seive the puree to ensure the seeds get removed. [I do it coz my husband suffers from stone troubles :( ] Your tomato puree is now ready to be used. 

Tip: I prepare  4-5 cups of tomato puree in advance and keep it in the freezer for future use. It does not turn rancid and comes handy while cooking in a jiffy!

1. In a kadhai take pour in the oil for deep  frying.
2. Separately deep fry all the veggies - Potatoes, Carrots, Drumsticks, Lady's Finger.
3. Transfer the deep fried veggies to a tissue paper so that any extra oil get drained
4. Now in another pan, pour oil for tempering. 
5. Throw in cumin, fenugreek and asafoetida.
6. Once the spices start to crackle, simmer the flame and add besan.
7. At this step you to keep a constant vigil and stir continuously else the besan may burn.
8. Once the besan turn pale yellowish brown in color and emits nutty fragrance, add in turmeric, coriander, red chilli and some salt.
9. Stir once more.
10. Now add the tomato puree.

NOTE: While adding the tomato puree, you have to ensure that besan gets evenly dissolved in tomato and there are no lumps. I had a bit tough time here. I resorted to the below two tricks.
  • Add the tomato puree little by little and give a stir after every addition.
  • If the lumps are visible after adding the puree, pick up a whisk and with a gentle hand whisk the mixture.         
11. Once tomato puree is fully added to the besan, roast the mixture for another 5-7 minutes so that the slight rawness of the tomatoes goes away.
12. Now add water to the mixture and give it a stir twice or thrice.
13. The flame should be on high and you have to constantly stir so that nothing spills out of the pan.
14. After one boil let the kadhi simmer for another 5-10 mins on low flame.
15. While the kadhi is simmering, in another pan, add some oil (1 tsp only since your veggies are already deep fried)
16. Add curry leaves, garlic, ginger, green chillies.
17. Saute on a high flame with pan 3-4 inch above the gas stove. 

NOTE: Keep it 3-4 inches above the flame else the high heat will further burn the deep fried veggies. I would here recommend not to use the spatula but toss and twirl the pan with hands

18. keeping the flame on high, add all the deep fried veggies
19. Add some turmeric, coriander, red chilli and some salt (You have put salt in kadhi as well so keep that in mind)
20. A good swirl after the spice and your veggies are ready to get dipped in the pool of tomato curry
21. Add the veggie mix to the kadhi and lid for 5-7 mins coz drumsticks might need some more time to become soft.
22. Unlid the pan, check the doneness of drumsticks, if all done, let the kadhi now simmer on low flame till it becomes a bit thick in consistency. (This would take another 10-12 mins)
23. Once the required consistency is achieved, turn off the gas.
24. Add the tamarind pulp and chopped coriander.
25. Lid the pan again and let it rest for 5-7 more mins.

Serve with hot rice and cucumber salad.


A must try for all those who can never get tired of learning and truly enjoy the magic of cooking!