Category Archives: Goan Special

Hara Chana Malvani style

Hara Chana (Green Chickpeas) Malvani Style
Hara Chana (Green Chickpeas) Malvani Style

The weekend brought with it a craving for the Konkani style of cooking, with fresh coconut and Kokum, hence decided to go and buy seafood but instead we ate a Jumbo Crab lunch at one of the Dubai Restaurants. But the craving for my style of cooking of the malvani curry was still lingering and hence I decided to cook this Hara Chana for dinner, it was supposed to be the next morning breakfast 🙂 .

Green Chickpea that I used is the dried Hirva Harbara/chana as it is called in Marathi. The fresh chana tastes sweet, but even the dried ones taste bit sweeter when compared with the black chana. For this preparation I used freshly grated coconut for the gravy masala, added Kokum for its typical sweetish yet tangy taste, and used my homemade garam masala powder that I grind weekly or fortnightly and keep ready for use. The ground garam masala has Cumin, Black Cardamom, Green cardamom, Star anise, Black Peppercorns, Bayleaf, Nutmeg, Cinnamon, Caraway seeds and Cloves. I also used the dried coriander powder that has Cumin added to it while powdering it.

The coconut adds a rich creamy sweetish taste, the whole dried red chili/ red chili powder and the garam masala adds to the perfect hot and spicy taste and the Kokum imparts the necessary sourness that can be adjusted by adding the kokum pieces according to ones taste. This gravy is mouthwatering, very flavorful and yummy to those who love the Konkani or Goan cuisine, one of my favorites.

INGREDIENTS:

Hara Chana: 300 gm

Hara Chana or Green Chickpeas
Hara Chana or Green Chickpeas

Onion: 1 small

Freshly grated coconut: 3 Tbsp

Tomato: 1 Medium

Dried Red Chili: 2 no.

Ginger & Garlic paste: 1 Tbsp

Coriander powder: 2 Tsp

Red Chili Powder: 2 Tsp

Turmeric: 1/2 Tsp

Garam Masala powder: 1 Tsp

Salt: To taste

Kokum: 5 pieces

Cooking oil: 2 Tbsp

Water: As needed for boiling the chana and also to add and adjust the thickness of the gravy.

METHOD: 

Wash the dried Hara chana and soak in water for 5-6 hours or overnight. Boil it for 3-4 whistles in a pressure cooker.

Heat Kadai or fry-pan on the gas stove, add few drops of oil, then put the red chili, the chopped onion and saute, then add the chopped tomato and finally add the grated coconut and fry till this masala is cooked. Grind this to a fine paste once it is cool.

Hara Chana Gravy masala
Hara Chana Gravy masala

If the ginger garlic paste is not ready, then we can add a small piece of ginger and 4 garlic cloves to the above masala while grinding.

Heat another Kadai and add the remaining oil, put the ground masala paste and ginger garlic paste and cook till the oil separates and is seen at the edges of the kadai. Use little quantity of water, if required, to fry the masala as this prevents the masala from getting burnt. Then add the turmeric, red chili powder, kokum, salt and simmer for a minute or two and then add the boiled chana to this masala. Let it cook on slow flame for 10 minutes. This allows the masala to mix well with the boiled chana. Do add all the water that is in the boiled chana when it was kept for boiling.

Add the garam masala just before the gas is to be switched off. Garnish with freshly chopped coriander.

ashuskitchen-Hara Chana Malvani style
ashuskitchen-Hara Chana Malvani style

SERVING OPTIONS: This can be served with Puri or Paratha or Roti, Dosa, set dosa or any bread of choice. I served it with whole wheatflour puris and some finely chopped onions. Rice and Hara chana gravy too can be another option.

ashuskitchen-Hara Chana Malvani style served with Puris
ashuskitchen-Hara Chana Malvani style served with Puris

NOTE: The home ground garam masala is fresh, stronger in flavor and hence very small quantity is required. If you are using outside store bought one then do adjust quantity as per the taste.

I enjoyed eating this yummy dish and feel happy to share it here with you all. Providing the links below to some other similar recipes that you might find interesting from ashuskitchen 🙂 .

For my other Chana post: click.

For similar healthy Cowpeas curry and salad recipes, click here and here.

Enjoy!

ashu

 

 

 

 

 

Prawn Curry with Fresh Coconut

Prawn Curry with Fresh Coconut
Prawn Curry with Fresh Coconut

In continuation of this months Goan Special seafood curry, I am posting my Prawn Curry recipe that uses fresh coconut.

For a seafood lover, the local fish market here is a delight, with an array of local and from abroad varieties of all types of seafood available for purchase in a single market. The display is so clean with all different fishes stacked neatly in the rows of shops/stalls that are numbered. The visit is always mind-boggling, difficult  to decide on what variety to purchase, and most visits end up in huge amount of seafood purchases. The family has no complains as long as they are getting to eat different dishes with interesting recipes.

For this recipe I always use either the small or big-sized prawns. The size of the prawns decides the ingredients added to the gravy, hence the preference. The small prawns are more sweetish in taste, hence the choice. It is a simple gravy, addition of just few ingredients makes it so delicious, a perfect blend of all the different flavors.The prawns and fresh coconut add the sweet taste, the Kokum adds the sour taste to the dish, and the chilies add the spice.

INGREDIENTS:

Small Prawns: 500 Gm

Fresh Coconut: 1/2 coconut (1 Katori grated coconut)

Onion: 1 Small

Red Kashmiri Chili: 3-4

Kokum: 3 pieces

Garlic: 4-5 cloves

Cumin: 1 Tsp

Red Chili Powder: 2 Tsp

Turmeric Powder: 1 Tsp

Garam Masala: 1 Tsp

Salt: To taste.

Cooking Oil: 2 Tbsp

Ingredients for Prawn Curry with Fresh Coconut
Ingredients for Prawn Curry with Fresh Coconut

METHOD:

Soak the Kokum and Kashmiri red chilies in hot water for 10 min.

Wash, clean, peel and devein the prawns. Apply pinch of turmeric and salt to the clean and towel dried prawns and keep them in the fridge.

Kokum and Red Chilli soaked in water.
Kokum and Red Chilli soaked in water.

Grind the soaked chilies, fresh coconut, onion, garlic, cumin to a fine paste, add water if required to get a fine paste of the masala.

Heat a kadai or pan on the gas stove and add the cooking oil. Then add the paste of the masala and fry till it is cooked. The add the turmeric, red chili powder, and salt and cook till the oil is seen at the edge of the kadai.

Fry the masala till the oil is seen on the edges and then add the prawns to the pan.
Fry the masala till the oil is seen on the edges and then add the prawns to the pan.

Add the prawns and mix with the masala and cook with a lid covering the pan for 5-7 minutes. Then add the soaked Kokum and little water, the quantity added depends on the thickness of the gravy that is desired. Half a glass water would be sufficient to get a thick gravy. Use your judgment to add the required amount of water.

If more water is added to the masala then let the water in gravy boil so the masala gets mixed properly and the gravy consistency is not too thin. Do not keep the gravy boiling on the stove for too long as the prawns tend to become hard and rubbery if cooked for long.

Sprinkle the Garam masala on the gravy and then empty the contents in a serving bowl. Garnish with finely chopped green coriander.

Serving Options: The Prawn Curry can be served with roti/fulkas, hot steamed white rice, or Malvani vade.

Prawn Curry with Fresh Coconut served with hot fulkas/roti and Kokum Kadi and roasted papad, with helpings of steamed rice, my Malvani special weekend Lunch menu.
Prawn Curry with Fresh Coconut served with hot fulkas/roti and Kokum Kadi and roasted papad, with helpings of steamed rice, my Malvani special weekend Lunch menu.

Ashu’s Malvani Special Weekend Lunch menu, the picture above, also includes fried fish either Surmai (click for-Kingfish Fry) or any other variety.

Click here for finding out how to roll roasted papad.

Click here for other prawn recipe on this blog.

I always enjoy meals that include this Prawn curry, sharing here gives me the opportunity to give you all the same experience. Happy cooking and enjoying your hand cooked meals, friends.

Wishing you all a pleasant day.

ashu.

Prawn Balchao, a spicy Goan Temptation

Monsoon in India bring forth pictures of a Goan trip to the mind. The vacation that is reminiscent of fresh salty sea breeze that awaken the nostrils the moment your foot touches this mesmerizing place. The tall, lean swaying coconut trees lining the roads, lush greenery, with the heavy monsoon rains transforming the landscape and the freshly grilled seafood on your platter, what more could a foodie ask? It definitely is the place to be in for a relaxing time away from the bustling cities, and if you have never visited than it is high time you include that in your bucket list. The other attraction that I simply love about the place is the bikes and two wheelers that one can rent out and zoom off on the roads with no set destination in mind, just soaking in the view of the tall coconut trees, rice fields on both sides of the road, farm workers busy in their fields, just breathing the fresh air and being lost in the moment.

The small villages that one can stop over while zooming off on the road trip gives us an exposure to experience the local life at close quarters. The friendly Goan people, the fishing folks, the smartly dressed fisherwoman selling the fresh catch at the local markets, the down-to-earth and merrier nature of the local life can be best experienced thus, not to forget the music. The local dressing of these fisher woman with fresh flowers adorning the neatly done hair leaves us with awe, the whole attire including the beautiful gold jewellery. The numerous different beaches lining the Goan sea-coast are worth the visit. I have visited this wonderful land only twice in the span of a decade, but both the trips were very dear and have given me the opportunity to taste some authentic Goan style cooking that have become part of my cooking style. Anything new is always fascinating and worth trying out. The Goan Kokum (Garcinia Indica, the English name as per Wikipedia) is a must have in my kitchen cabinet/fridge, cooking seafood becomes incomplete without addition of this ingredient. Fresh coconut is another which I cannot do without for cooking Prawns or Crabs. These two ingredients brings out the best and compliments the sweetish delicate flesh of these food variety.

The best food memory of my first Goan visit was of the food eaten at my husbands uncle’s house, folks who are dear to me. Driving through the Goan roads on a motorbike, our unforgettable journey almost a decade back, we had stopped for lunch at Martin’s Corner, a famous restaurant. Going over the menu card I had ordered a dish named Prawn Balchao, I had never heard nor tasted this dish ever before. It was such a fiery spicy gravy that I could not enjoy it even though I loved the taste. I can never forget that lunch meal. The dish got registered in my mind from that moment, and I always carried the thought of making it someday. Fast forward to end of last month, me and my girlfriends visited a restaurant here and the menu card listed this dish and this was the second time I ate this fiery prawn dish, though this time requested the chef for a little mild preparation. And finally the day dawned and my thought of preparing this was realised  with the first attempt in my kitchen this week. I do wish that every prawn lover should give this dish at least one attempt to make and taste this. Let the dish tickle your taste buds at least once!!😂

INGREDIENTS:

Prawns: 600 gms (cleaned, deveined)

Onion: 2 Big (250-300 gm)

Kashmiri Red Chillies: 10-12 (Add couple more if you like it very hot and spicy)

Ginger: 2” piece

Garlic: 6 cloves

Cumin: 2 Tsp

Green Chillies: 3

Curry Leaves: few springs

Cooking Oil: 75 ml (a more would also do, depends on preference)

Vinegar: 1 &1/2 Tbsp

Turmeric: 1 Tsp

Salt: To taste.

METHOD:

Soak the red Kashmiri chillies in hot water for 10-15 min. This makes them soft and hence easy to grind.

Wash, clean, peel and devein the prawns.

Grind the red and green chillies with ginger, garlic and cumin in a grinder to get a fine paste. Use vinegar or little water if required to get the fine paste.This is our red masala that gives the fiery red colour to the dish. The number of red chillies can be increased if one prefers a very hot gravy.

Grind together soaked red chillies, ginger, garlic, cumin.
Grind together soaked red chillies, ginger, garlic, cumin.
The red chilli paste
The red chilli paste

Chop the onions very finely. Slit the green chillies thin. Finely chop 2 garlic cloves. Cut fine Julienne of a 1/2” ginger piece.

Heat a Kadai on the gas stove and add cooking oil to it. Add the green chillies, ginger, garlic, curry leaves to it. Then add the finely chopped onions and sauté on slow flame till the onions are golden brown in colour and nicely done.

Fry the ginger, garlic, curry leaves, onion in the oil.
Fry the ginger, garlic, curry leaves, onion in the oil.

While the onions are getting done, heat a frying pan with little oil and saute the prawns for couple of minutes till they turn reddish orange in colour and then remove in a plate.

Sauté the prawns till they change colour
Sauté the prawns till they change colour

Then add the red chilli paste, salt and turmeric to the onions and let the masala cook evenly till the sides leave oil.

Onion and red chilli masala
Onion and red chilli masala

Then add the lightly sautéed prawns to this gravy and let it simmer for 10-15 min so the prawns are evenly coated with the gravy.

Then add 1 Tbsp of vinegar to the gravy, mix and cook for another 5 min on slow flame and then remove from the stove into a serving bowl and garnish with finely chopped green chillies and fresh green coriander.

SERVING OPTIONS: This dish can be served with a bowl of steaming white rice and/or choicest Indian breads that you make at home. In my house we eat with piping hot phulkas (a type of Indian flat bread, recipe soon on the blog), and not to forget glasses of water for me😉!

Prawn Balchao from ashu's
Prawn Balchao from ashu’s

Note: This is the recipe I tried making that best resembled to what I had tasted last month in the restaurant.

Trust you all enjoyed going through the post as much as I enjoyed sharing my experience here. Keeping working out and enjoy all foods that tickle your taste buds. Happy Cooking.

ashu.