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Cover: Some like it hot

Recipes with Asafoetida

23Jun 12

Mango Pachadi

Mango PachadiMango Pachadi is a delicious Indian side dish which is actually quite fun to make. It is best served with rice and curry like this yellow thai chicken curry.

One of the key spices that gives this dish its distinctive flavour is asafoetida. This Indian spice is said to be very good for digestion. This is helpful, since many of my friends here in England say they find Indian food quite heavy. However, if you add a nice digestive ingredient like asafoetida, it makes for much better digestion and can be found at your local Indian market.

Ingredients:

  • 1 large mango
  • ½tsp turmeric powder
  • 10 red chilli peppers, minced
  • 1tsp mustard seeds
  • 2tbsp jaggery
  • 1/2tsp chilli powder
  • Pinch of Asafoetida
  • 1.5tsp rice flour
  • Salt to taste
  • 600ml water
  • 5tsp oil

 Preparation Method:

  1. Peel the large mango. You can use a normal potato peeler to do this because mango peels are quite thin. In fact, I have always found mangos very easy to work with.
  2. Next chop the large mango into small pieces. These can be roughly 2 centimetre pieces. But again, I mean very roughly.
  3. Add the mango to a pot, along with the turmeric powder and the water. Bring the water to the boil, then lower to medium heat. Cover the pot and let it simmer for about 10-15 minutes, or until the mango is cooked. You will know the mango is cooked when it is soft.
  4. When the mango is cooked, remove it from the water
  5. Mince the red chillies and set them aside.
  6. In a separate pot, heat up oil on a very high flame. Add the mustard seeds. They will start to pop and crackle. But be careful they do not the splatter on you, or you will get burned.
  7. Lower to medium flame. Now add the minced red chillies, jaggery, chilli powder and asafoetida to the pan. Fry for 3 minutes.
  8. Now add the mango to the pan. Add another 150ml of water and stir slowly on a low heat for a few minutes.
  9. Add salt to taste.
  10. In a separate bowl, combine 300ml of water with the rice flour to make a paste.
  11. Add this paste to the pot and stir slowly until thick.

Makes: 2 servings
Takes: 40 minutes

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07May 12

Simple Sev Snacks

Simple Sev SnacksSev are crispy, deep-fried Indian snacks. I remember coming home from school as a little girl, looking for an afternoon snack, and munching on sev; it is what I would call comfort food. I do have to give a quick warning, though— it is not exactly low on calories! As it is deep fried, be sure to munch on just enough to enjoy, but do not overdo it.

To prepare this recipe, you will need a sev maker, also known as a sev press. This cooking device can be bought at any Indian food store. Sev makers are a bit like pasta makers. However, they are much smaller and can be lifted up and held over a pot or a pan. (For a chocolaty snack, try this chocolate tiffin. It’s not Indian food, but it’s yummy!)

Ingredients:

  • 360g whole-wheat flour
  • 2 tsp. red chilli powder
  • 4 pinches of asafoetida
  • 1 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • Pinch of salt to taste
  • 240ml water
  • vegetable oil for deep-frying the sev

Preparation Method:

  1. Place the whole-wheat flour in a bowl. This is a very distinctive type of flour that will give the sev the flavour you are going for.
  2. Add the red chilli powder to the flour. Blend these ingredients.
  3. Add the asafoetida  and turmeric powder to the mix.
  4. Throw in a pinch of salt.
  5. Remove from the bowl and place it on a board.
  6. Add the vegetable oil and water and slowly knead the dough. I have said this before, but I really do consider kneading dough to be good exercise. It will perhaps offset some of the calories from eating deep-fried snacks!
  7. Now grease the inside of the sev maker with oil.
  8. Put the ball of dough into the sev maker.
  9. Heat up the vegetable oil on medium heat in a deep-bottomed pan. When it is quite hot and you can see little bubbles forming in it, you are ready to deep-fry the sev.
  10. Hold the sev maker over the pan with the hot oil in it. Slowly turn the sev maker’s handle so that thin strings of pasta-like dough come out. They should fall gently into the pan.
  11. Let the sev fry lightly.
  12. Remove the sev from the hot oil and drain it. You do not want to eat all that oil, so let a lot of it drain off.
  13. Allow the sev to cool and become crunchy before snacking on it.

 

Makes: 360g of sev

Takes: 45 minutes

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