A jumbled-up multiple-event post, to mirror my life of late — also jumbled-up with multiple events!
All in the mad-dash runup to Thanksgiving, I was trying to keep in mind the three things I wanted to cook for:
(Ok, whew! made it to RCI: Bihar in time!)
These, and I had Thanksgiving dinner, the only *big* holiday celebration in my home for multitude of folks — musn’t neglect that!
And of course all the while, there is JFI — and my very own turn, Jihva for Toor Dal!
I have been so happy about this, wanting to cook every entry that has been sent thus far! Day and night, I couldn’t stop thinking about toor dal — ’till one morning I found myself wanting to toss some toor dal into a bowl of cottage cheese and sprinkle some sambhar powder, just to see how that would taste.
I may be slightly obsessed 😉
So I hope Chandrika and Sra will forgive my inclusion of toor dal in my entries for their events — for Sangeeta’s I managed to get away without a drop in the khichdi.
First up, for AFAM: Dates!
1 tsp oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 dry red (kashmiri) chiles
1/2 c onion, chopped
1/2 c dates, chopped
1 ripe persimmon, peeled and diced
1 fistful toor dal, washed (about 1/3 c)
1/4 – 1/2 c water
In a medium saucepan, heat the oil over med-high and add the cumin seeds. When they crackle, add the chiles and reduce heat to medium.
Stir a minute until the chiles darken, then add chopped onion. Fry a few minutes till onion begins to color, then add dates, persimmon, and dal.
Stir and fry again for 2-3 minutes, then reduce heat to medium-low and add the water, couple of tablespoons at a time. Allow mixture to steam nearly dry before adding more water. The dal should be softened but not cooked through — about ten minutes should do. Stir in a little salt, remove pan from the heat and allow cool.
Grind the mixture using only as much water as needed for a medium-thick consistency. We don’t want to grind the dal to bits.
Taste for salt and serve chutney warm or room temperature, with dosa, idlies, potato upma as I did, or perhaps just a spoon 😉
Then for Grindless Gravies!
Grindless Potato Sambhar Gravy
inspired by my lack of concentration the other night
when making sambhar with far too much water
for grindless gravy
1 fistful toor dal (about 1/3 c), washed
2 big potatoes, diced roughly (preferably russets)
1/2 c onion, chopped
1 small lump (about 2 TB) soft tamarind paste
(not the hard imli block, but similarly packaged soft paste or use tamcon)
1 small lump jaggery
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp oil
1/4 tsp turmeric
3-4 c water
1 tsp oil
1 tsp mustard seed
1 tsp cumin seed
2 dried red (kashmiri) chiles
5-6 curry leaves
1-2 tsp ISG’s Magic Sambhar Powder
Salt to taste
Pressure cook the grindless gravy ingredients about 10-12 minutes. Let the pressure come down on its own, and when safe, open the cooker and mash the mixture with a potato masher to nearly smooth. Try to leave some chunks of potato.
Return pan to the heat and add secret ingredient and salt to taste. Simmer 5-10 minutes. The potato should break down almost totally, making a lovely thick (grindless) gravy.
If it’s too thick, add a little water — if too thin, simmer a little longer.
When the consistency is just as you desire, hold aside and…
In a small pan, heat the oil and do the tadka, adding chiles and curry leaves after mustard and cumin pop.
Pour tadka over the hot potato gravy and cover for a few minutes.
Serve hot with a dollop of ghee (if you like your gravy plain) or serve over any rice or vegetable of your choice. Roasted or steamed cauliflower is a great side dish to mix in with the grindless gravy (with hardly any toor dal!) 🙂
Thank you ladies, one and all, for getting my creative kitchen juices flowing. Both these dishes will be regulars in my kitchen from now on!
I will be sending the entries properly in a day or two 🙂