Monday, October 29, 2007

Poori,Kale Chane And Sooji ka halwa

The Jihva Special Edition : Festive Series this season got me thinking…what am I reminded when I think Dussehra- Diwali?

Of course the ‘Kanchaks’ !! no second thoughts…

‘Kanchak’s ‘ or the kanya bhoj is done on the 8th or the 9th day of the Navratras, after strenuous fasting for the rest of the period, wherein female kids from the neighborhood, revered on that day as the ‘Goddess Durga’ herself, are invited for lunch.

Now here comes the interesting part…the menu. The menu was always the same ‘Poori’, ‘kale chane’ and ‘sooji ka halwa’ - and the taste, one to be always remembered.

I would not go into the making of the poori or sooji ka halwa.The making of poori has been explained, step by step, in an excellent way out here. Only addition may be 1 tsp of Ajwain to the dough before kneading it for flavoring. Sooji ka halwa can be made referring here.

A very dear friend has lent me this recipe.
For the Kale Chane take:
1.5 cups of black gram and soak it overnight.

Forgot to soak overnight? Here is the trick instead of soaking in cold water soak it in warm water (not hot water!) also add 1 tbsp of wheat flour and 1 tsp of baking soda to it.
This way it will become soft enough to cook sooner.

Now take
1 inch cinnamon stick
1 brown cardamom
5-6 Cloves
½ aniseed star
Grind all the above spices to a coarse mix.

Drain the water from the soaked black gram. Incase you have added Wheat flour to it while soaking you may have to wash it thoroughly.

Pour the black gram into a pressure cooker .
Add the spice mix
salt as per taste
½ tsp of turmeric powder
1.5 cups of water

Cook it for ½ hour.
Water should be just enough to cook the black gram thoroughly. Remember this is a dry dish.

Take a pan and when the pan is sufficiently heated add 1-2 tbsp of clarified butter(ghee) to it.
When the clarified butter heats up add
1 tsp of cumin seeds

As cumin seeds crackle add
1 tbsp of coriander powder
1 tsp of cumin powder
1 tsp of red chilli powder
Salt to taste

Saute it for 2-3 mins on high flame constantly stirring it.
When done pour the boiled black gram into pan and mix it well so as to coat it well with the sautéed spices. While doing this also mash some part of the black gram with the ladle to give it a thick look.
Its done when the water content if any gets fully evaporated.

And you know the best way to enjoy the taste …..mix it will sooji ka halwa and eat it with hot poori!

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