433. Dry tindora shaak/sabji
Simple but delicious
I am posting a traditional recipe after a long time. Dry tindora (tondli, giloda,kovakai) shaak or sabji is a simple but delicious vegetable to prepare. Some prepare it using just dry spices, some add the fresh spices like ginger and some use both. Whichever way you prefer to make it, its important to make a dish that suits the taste of your family. Some find cooking a chore, some find it therapeutic and for some its a passion.
There was a local cookery competition taking place on tv sometime back and while I was watching it I was wondering how you can really judge someone’s cooking? Some like their food a bit more spicy, some like it mild, some like it a bit tangy, and some prefer a wee bit more salt. So how is it possible to judge ones taste buds? If I were to judge a competition, I would be put off if I found a dish slightly more salty or chilli. Would that mean the cook is a bad cook? No, that cook just cooked the food the way her or his family likes it. When judges actually comment on how it could have been better if there a bit more lemon or bit more cinnamon, I feel that that is what they prefer, but the next person may not. Basically what I am trying to say is that cook from your heart and what your family likes. Most recipes are just a guideline. Add whatever spices you prefer.
Coming to my dry tindora shaak or sabji, some people like to fry the tindora slices before its tempered to make it more crunchier. However, from the healthy point of view, I prefer not to fry them. I find that this shaak goes well with tuvar dal or moong dal and hot rotis. Did I miss my traditional Indian vegetables while touring Italy? Yes I did. As mentioned in my previous post, vegetables and salads were a rarity in the hotels set menus unless we bought them during our walking tours or ordered a different menu. So whenever I saw any fresh vegetables or fruits, that would be my breakfast. However, in Venice, very few tomatoes were put out so we had to sort of share them. That day my breakfast was a crispy croissant, tomatoes and mozzarella.
updated on 2/10/2015
DRY TINDORA SHAAK/SABJI
500g tindora, ivy gourd
3 tbsp oil
1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1 tsp mustard seeds (rai)
1 tsp green chilli paste
1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp garlic paste
½ tsp turmeric powder (haldi)
a gnerous pinch of asafoetida (hing)
1-1¼ tsp salt
2-3 tbsp water
½ tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp coriander cumin powder (dhana jiru)
2 tbsp fresh chopped coriander
- Wash the tindora well. Pat them dry on a kitchen towel.
- Trim of the ends. Cut it into half lengthwise.
- Slice each half lengthwise. The slices should not be too thin or too thick.
- Heat oil in a wide pan over medium heat.
- When it is hot, add mustard and cumin seeds.
- Add garlic, ginger and chilli paste and stir fry for a few seconds.
- Add turmeric powder and asafoetida.
- Add the sliced tindoras.
- Add salt and the water. Mix well gently.
- Cover the pan with a lid and lower the heat. Cook the vegetable for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Mix the vegetable in between so that it does not get burnt at the bottom.
- Cook till done and the tindoras appear dry.
- Take the pan off the heat and add red chilli powder and coriander cumin powder.
- Mix well.
- Garnish with fresh coriander and serve.
- You can cut the tindora into round slices if you prefer.
- Check each tindora when you cut it into half. Sometimes there could be white tiny worms in them.
- Tindoras that have turned red, usually don’t cook well. I use the ones(red ones) which slice easily. If I can’t slice it easily, I don’t use them.
- After you have sliced the tindoras, a slimy substance will get stuck to your fingers. Either oil your hands before cutting, but its tricky as the tindoras keep slipping off from your fingers or when washing your hands, rub some salt to remove the slime.
- Adding too much water will make the tindoras too soft and overcooked.
- Add a bit of sugar at the end if you prefer. I prefer vegetables without sugar.
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