Tuesday, January 30, 2007

"Hot" Blog



The Year 2006 was a good “Blog” year for me. I made some really nice Blog friends – one of whom –Shobha- is now also a personal friend. She gave me a recipe of a dish that was a total hit with all her friends – I tried it out over the weekend and it was indeed a knockout one! So, with her permission I thought I would share it on my blog. Bisi Bele Baath.

My very first recollections of this dish go back to 16 years ago. There was a new shop that had opened in the Dwaraka Nagar signal. Those were times when Appa, Amma and me would eat out almost every Saturday – the hotel industry was in its infancy in Vizag and the quality of dishes were truly good. We were delighted with the bisi bele baath that was served in this new hotel – a small but clean place. The dish in itself was delightfully prepared , garnished with cashews and soaked in ghee; and to add to it were the best potato chips that I had ever had. We were addicts of this place for a long time and then suddenly it closed. Our Palates were severely disappointed. But there was hope in the far horizon. We bought an electric rice cooker and along with that came our Maseeha – the cook book which contained the recipe for this wondrous sambhar-rice! And lo – re-started the wonderful Sunday lunches of “hot” bele baath!

One day while ambling thru the aisles of ‘Aditya’ , I picked up the MTR bisi-bele-baath mix. And as usual the Mr. liked the meal I prepared whereas I could not really relish the sweety taste of the masala and swore that I will never make it again, till Shobha’s mail came. So, the weekend that flew by saw me buying the necessary ingredients and making the dish. Even the Mr. who had swore not to have lunch – a stomach ache from the previous day’s dinner of fiery Thai fried rice – could not resist taking a cup of the delicious dish!

So here goes – in Shobha’s own words –

Ingredients

Rice – 1 Cup
Toor Dhaal – 1 Cup
Veggies (Potato , brinjal, peas, carrot , beans, capsicum, drumstick … ) all minced well – 2 cups.
Tamrind – key size – boil it and take out the juice.
Turmeric powder – ½ teaspoong
Hing – to taste
Salt – to taste
Ghee / Oil

For Masala

Coriander seeds - 2 tsp
Chana dal - 2 tsp
Red Chillies - around 8 to 9 – according to spice needed.
Coconut – 1/2 cup
Poppy seeds - 1/2 tsp
Cinnamon sticks - 1 or 2 (depending on how well you like / hate the cinnamon smell)
Cardamom - around 4 pods
Cloves - 6 to 8

How to?

Roast all the ingredients for the masala and grind them into a wet paste.
Cook the Dhaal and Rice together.

In a Pot take the tamarind juice salt & turmeric powder and bring to a boil. Simultaneously - in a pan, add ghee & put some mustard seeds and curry leaves. When they splutter, add the veggies saute them & add the contents to the tamarind water. When the veggies get boiled & when the tamarind juice gets thicker, add the wet-paste mixture and mix. At this point the mixture will appear thick like sambhar.

And then add the cooked rice-dhaal to the pot. Add 1 to 2 tsp of ghee. Simmer and allow the rice-dhaal to get fully soaked in the sambar-kind-of-thing.

Garnish with cashews lightly roasted in ghee.

So, is your mouth watering already! Even as I write this mine is – guess it is time for my tea

3 comments:

The Smiling Girl said...

Then u shud eat mine.. my friends say its the best thing.. :D:D *braggish smile*
I still think my Mom makes it the best!

Vidhya Rajesh said...

$$ Smiling girl - Now, THAT, is a very lucrative reason to come to hyderabad huh?

Maree said...

Interesting to know.