It's been a week since I sat down to write a post. I never knew one week can withhold so much. First, we were off on a 3 day trip to Mahanandi and Srisailam, along with my SIL family. It was one of those resoundingly memorable trips, yet it left us very tired.
On the home front, so much has happened that I know I can never actually try to cover everything in one post. I had taken so many pictures during our trip, but I still have to sort them. We didn't take the twins along, as we knew the trip will be really tiring. But this was the first time we have been away from them and really missed them every single moment. We were really excited and looking forward to seeing them again. Konda always used to sulk for a while, had we left her for a day or so.
We thought we would be treated the same. But it was a mixed reaction from the twins. The reception that Peddu gave us, was the most beautiful one. He was crying with joy and happiness and was literally shouting Dada, Amma, Akka, and was repeating like a mantra. I went in first, but his eyes were all on his dad. He ran past me, to hug him and was hugging him tight for a while. Only after a few minutes, did he turn to see me. He didn't allow us to look at Chinnu at all. And of course, Chinnu, being more like his sister, was sulking for a while. He came to us after a lot of pleading and cajoling. I really wished we had somebody take a video of that moment. But then, this is not something we ever going to forget.
Coming to this dish we prepared yesterday, it was a most delicious dish. Never really expected it to turn out so well. We came about this recipe a while ago and since then Athamma was telling me that we should make it. Other than stir fires, we don't use Tindora/Dondakaya in any other way. And this recipe was a curry. When hubby dear overheard us discussing it, he opted out of the Dondakaya Curry experiment committee! He sure didn't know what he missed. When he was not at home yesterday, we thought it was the best time to experiment and if it turns well, we can always make it again for him. I seriously couldn't believe it turned out so yummy. I took it to my colleagues. And all of them went bonkers with the taste. I seriously recommend this is something you got to try!
Preparation Time : 10 mins
Cooking Time : 30 mins
Serves - 4
Dondakaya/ Kovakkai / Tindora - 100 gms
Onions - 2 medium
Tomato - 2 medium
Tamarind Juice - 2 tsp
Ginger Garlic paste - 1/2 tsp
Red Chilli Powder - 1 tsp
Coriander Powder - 1 tsp
Turmeric Powder a pinch
Salt to taste
Oil - 3 tsp (Same oil can be used for cooking the gravy)
Coriander Leaves for garnish
Mustard Seeds + Urad dal - 14/ tsp
Curry leaves - few
Green Chillies - 2 small silted
Cashew Nuts - 4 whole
Almond - 4 whole
Roasted Peanuts/ Groundnuts - 3 tbsp
Poppy Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Grated Coconut - 2 tsp
Clove - 1
Cinnamon - 1"
Method to prepare:
Wash and pat dry the Tindora. Trim both ends. Holding it straight, make vertical slits till 3/4th of the size, making sure the end is still intact as shown in the picture.
Heat a pan with oil. When its hot, gently drop the dondakaya and deep fry it for about 2 minutes. Deep dry all in batches. Remove to a kitchen towel and keep it aside.
For the masala, you can either roast all of them in oil or you can grind it to a smooth paste without frying. We didn't roast it, just ground it with water to get a smooth paste. Keep it aside.
For the gravy, in the same kadai, heat the remaining oil. Add in the seasonings. Once the mustard seeds splutter, sauté the chopped onions. Fry well.
Then add the ginger garlic paste, fry till both onions and ginger garlic paste is well cooked. Then add chopped tomatoes. Add chili powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder and salt. Once the tomatoes get mushy, add the tamarind juice. Leave it for a min.
Then add the ground nuts masala. Simmer and cook it covered for 10 mins. Now you can either stuff the masala into the Tindora or add it just like that. Both the ways it will be great. When you stuff the tindora, you will get the inner part all nicely spiced. But even otherwise it has a nice taste.
When oil starts coming out, add the fried tindora. Cook on high for 2 mins. Add 1/2 water and bring to boil. Then simmer for 5 mins or till it gets thick. Garnish with coriander leaves.
The taste of Tindora was something out of the world. I never thought it will be so great. It was a great gravy to be served with chapatis and Rice.