Dhuska and Ghugni
EVENT: SHHH COOKING SECRETLY
THEME: JHARKHAND CUISINE
Jharkhand, a relatively new state in the east part of India which was carved out of southern Bihar in the year 2000 means the land of forests. My son in law comes from that state and whenever his mum shares photos of their outings, it showcases the beauty of Jharkhand. Rich in wildlife, waterfalls and forests, this state is also rich in minerals like iron, coal, mica, graphite, limestone, dolomite, asbestos to name a few.
The capital city for Jharkhand is Ranchi, the town where the famous cricketeer Dhoni comes from and of course where my son in law comes from. Did you know that Jamshedpur, the first planned industrial city in India has no municipal corporation as the city is administered by the Tatas. Its believed that Jharkhand is green as far as the eyes can see.
Coming to the cuisine of Jharkhand, its very much similar to Bihar and may vary a bit because of the food prepared by the natives of Jharkhand. Dal, bhat and tarkari (sabji) served with pickles forms the simple easy to digest everyday fare for most people. Mustard oil is used in mostly all the dishes. Some of the famous dishes from Jharkhand are sattu, dhuska served with black chickpea curry called ghugni or a potato curry, thekua, meat salaan, tilkut, litti chokha,pitha, rugra a sabji(curry) prepared from the indigenous mushroom, chilka roti, mitha khaja, handia a rice beer prepared in earthen pots, arsa roti, dubhni rotli, kanda ki sabji a curry made from indigenous root, dudhori to name a few.
My partner for this theme was Sasmita who blogs at First Timer Cook. Check out her blog for some interesting traditional and international dishes. Personally I’ve bookmarked her tofu dumplings stir fried, corn manchurian and virgin jamun margarita to try out. I’ve already made sanna from her blog and they turned out perfect.She gave me black chickpeas and tomato as my secret ingredients and I gave her chana dal and ajwain.
Dhuska has always been on my list to try and this was the perfect opportunity. Dhuska is lentil and rice fried snack popularly eaten for breakfast with ghugni a black chickpea curry or a potato curry. I prepared both dhuska and ghugni and it was such a delicous meal. When I made the batter for dhuska, I was a bit apprehensive. I kept on thinking that the moment I will pour the batter into the hot oil, it will disintegrate. However, I was pleasantly surprised how perfectly it came out like little shallow bowls. The taste of dhuska reminds me of the Gujarati patuda no lot. Both have the same main ingredients chana dal and rice.
As to the ghugni, I’m now appreciating the distinct flavor of mustard oil. I prepare black chickpea curry quite often but Gujarati style. This preparation with onion, a bit of sourness from the tomato and amchur powder (dried mango powder) and simple spices was quite different. Come to think of it, its a delicious gluten free way to begin the day.
makes about 12 pieces
1 cup rice
1 cup chana dal (chickpea lentils)
½ inch piece of ginger
2-3 green chilis finely chopped
½ tsp turmeric powder (haldi, hardar)
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh coriander leaves
1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1-1¼ cups water
oil for deep frying
- Soak the rice and lentil in warm water for 6-8 hours.
- Drain the water out and wash the lentil and rice in a sieve.
- Put the rice and lentil into a blender jug along with the ginger and measured water.
- Grind it to a fine consistency batter. The batter consistency is like pancake batter.
- Take the batter out into a bowl.
- Add chopped green chilis, chopped coriander, salt, turmeric powder, cumin seed and mix well.
- Heat oil in a wok, karai or a deep pan for frying over medium heat.
- Drop a small amount of the batter into the oil. If it comes up instantly then the oil is ready.
- Take a ladle and drop a ladleful of the batter in a steady stream into the middle part of the wok.
- Wait for the dhuska to float up. Turn it over and fry till its light pink in colour.
- Remove dhuska from the oil and keep it on a kitchen towel so that the excess oil gets soaked up.
- Repeat steps 9-11 with the remaining batter.
- Serve hot with ghugni or a potato curry.
1 cup black (red/brown) chickpeas
2 large onions finely chopped
2 tomatoes finely chopped
2 tbsp mustard oil
1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp green chili paste or 2 chopped chillis
½ tsp turmeric powder (haldi, hardar)
½ – 1 tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp coriander powder
¼ tsp garam masala
½ – 1 tsp amchur powder (dry mango powder)
1½ tsp salt
1- 1½ cup water
2 – 3 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
- Soak the chickpeas overnight in warm water.
- Next day drain out the water and wash the chickpeas.
- Put them in a pressure cooker with enough water so that the chickpeas are covered. Add ½ tsp salt from the measured amount. Close the pressure cooker and cook the chickpeas for 3-4 whistles over medium heat or till done.
- Heat oil in a pan over medium heat till it begins to smoke. Add cumin seeds and half of the onions.
- Stir fry the onions till they become soft and light brown in colour.
- Add ginger,chillis, turmeric, red chili , coriander powders.
- Stir fry for a few seconds and then add the chopped tomatoes.
- Add salt and mix well. Cover the pan and cook the tomatoes till they become soft and mushy.
- Add the chickpeas and measured water. Cook the curry for 5-10 minutes.
- Add garam masala and amchur powder and mix well. If you like more gravy then add some more water.
- To serve, top it with remaining chopped onion and coriander.
- Don’t make the dhuska batter too watery otherwise the mixture will disintegrate in the oil.
- When pouring the batter into the oil, don’t swirl the ladle, just pour in a steady stream.
- My ghugni preparation is not too watery. If you prefer more gravy then add more water.
- Can use 1 cup fresh tomato puree instead of 2 chopped tomatoes.
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You may want to check out the following dishes from other states of India:
Sending this recipe to the following event:
Shhh Cooking Secretly a group started by Priya of Priya’s Versatile Recipes, is where every month food bloggers are paired up and give each other 2 secret ingredients to cook with according to the theme chosen. If you’re interested in joining this exciting group then please leave a message in the comment section. Thank you.