599. Shahi Mushroom Korma
A rich cuisine
Every week my blogging scene is a bit like the following – try and prepare and write out the post before or on Monday. I wait impatiently to see what the rest of the #FoodieMonday #Bloghop members have made pertaining to the chosen theme, then I visit the posts and comment on them. Tuesday the group whatsapp goes all haywire as we try and decide on the theme. So basically we get 5 days to prepare the dish. But 5 days just fly and by Sunday I’m thinking “oh dear my dish is not ready”. Then its like a storm in the kitchen. Well that’s the scene nowadays till my daughter gets married. When I’m in Mombasa I usually have the dish ready before Saturday as usually hubby and I go to our beach apartment to spend the weekend.
Coming to our #67th theme for the #FoodieMonday#Bloghop, we decided to explore the #Mughlai cuisine. We all make something or the other with rich gravy or exotic biryanis, succulent kebabs without giving it much thought. However, when we decided on Mughlai cuisine, that’s the time I actually had to research what is really means.
Mughlai cuisine is basically food prepared with a variety of aromatic spices varying from slightly mild to spicy. This cuisine was introduced to India by the Mughal Empire. It is believed that when they came to India, they were not happy with the food prepared locally and they introduced a lot of spices, nuts, fruits and cooking methods. Mughals being Muslims, most of the dishes were meat based and some vegetables were added to enhance the preparation. Most of the dishes are either of Turkic or Persian origins.
Muglai food basically consists of main dishes accompanied by side dishes. Biryanis, kebabs, kormas (qorma), koftas, naans are a part of the Mughlai cuisine. Compared to other cuisines of India, Mughlai gravy dishes are rich in spices, nuts, dairy products and thick and creamy. Vegetables and paneer were introduced into the Mughlai cuisine to suit the vegetarian palate. That does not mean that the Mughals didn’t have a palate for sweets or desserts. Most famous Mughlai dessert or sweet preparations are Shahi Tukra, Sheer Korma, Falooda, Kalakand, Anjeer halwa to name a few.
I decided to make Shahi Mushroom Korma for this theme. So what is korma(kurvama, qorma,kurma, khorma)? Basically the meat is braised(cooked at hight heat dry or with liquid) and then added to the gravy and cooked over low heat. A mixture of spices are added to the korma along with yogurt and cream. Once the dairy product is added, the cooking temperature is controlled so that the cream or yogurt does not curdle. Shahi means royal and the dish has cream and nuts and sometimes fruits too. Being a vegetarian I decided to make the korma using mushrooms.
SHAHI MUSHROOM KORMA
1 large onion
1 tsp garlic paste
1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp green chilli paste
½ cup beaten yogurt
½ cup fresh cream or coconut cream
½ cup water
¼ cup cashew nuts
¼ cup almonds
1 tbsp poppy seeds (khus khus)
1 tbsp char magaz seeds (melon seeds)
2 tbsp hot milk
a few strands of saffron
¼ tsp turmeric powder (haldi)
1 tbsp kasuri methi
3 tbsp ghee (clarified butter)
¾-1 tsp salt
For the korma spice:
1 one inch cinnamon stick
2 green cardamom (elachi)
1 strand mace (javantri)
1 bay leaf
1 black cardamom (bada elachi)
½ tsp fennel seeds (valiyari)
½ tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1 tsp coriander seeds
6 pepper corns
4-6 cashew nuts
Preparation of the korma spice mixture:
- Dry roast the spices in a wide pan over low heat till the cumin begins to crackle. Make sure you stir the spices constantly.
- Take the pan off the heat. Spread the roasted spices in a plate to cool.
- Grind the spices in coffee grinder or dry grinder.
- Keep the korma spice on the side till required.
- Soak the saffron in hot milk.
- Wash and wipe the mushrooms. Cut them into halves or quarters depending on the size.
- Peel and cut the onion into chunks. Grind it to a paste.
- Roast the cashew nuts, almonds, poppy seeds and melon seeds in a pan over low heat till the poppy seeds begin to pop. Stir the mixture constantly. Let the mixture cool down a bit and then grind it into a powder.
- Heat 1 tbsp ghee in a pan over low heat. Add the cashew nuts, almonds, pistachios and raisins. Fry for a few seconds. Remove the nuts and raisins and keep on the side.
- Add 1 tbsp ghee to the pan and stir fry the mushrooms over hight heat for 2-3 minutes. Stir the mushrooms frequently.
- Remove the mushrooms from the pan and keep it on the side till required.
- Add the remaining ghee to the pan.
- Add the onion paste and cook till it becomes light pink.
- Add garlic, ginger and chilli paste and stir fry for a few seconds.
- Add the nut powder. Mix well. Add water and mix till the mixture appears creamy.
- Add 1 tsp of the korma spice, turmeric powder, soaked saffron along with the milk and yogurt. Mix well.
- Add the mushrooms and salt. Mix well. Cover the pan and let the mushrooms simmer in the sauce over low heat for 10 minutes.
- Add kasuri methi and cream and mix well. cook it for 2-3 minutes.
- Put the shahi mushroom korma in a serving bowl.
- Garnish with the fried nuts and raisins and serve with naans, rice, rotis or parathas.
- Add the korma spice according to your taste.
- Add vegetables or paneer along with mushrooms if you like.
- Can add either cream or coconut cream to the korma.
- Add a bit of water or milk if the gravy becomes too thick.
You may want to check out the following:
|Mughlai Egg Curry