Nimona – green peas curry

BM #113 : Week 4, Day 2
Theme : A-Z Curries

This curry has been on my bookmark list for a long long time now. I had this is my mind for the alphabet G ( green peas curry), H (hare matar ka nimona), M (matar ka nimona) and finally am doing it for N. This is an easy to do recipe, almost all the ingredients are staples for me. I always have frozen peas at home and that’s what I used for today’s recipe after thawing.

This is the first time I am preparing and my family loved this dish. I already have requests for repeats 😁. I served this with jeera rice and it was a good combination. Plain rice or roti would also pair well with this curry.

I followed the recipe from this YouTube video for most part. I saw another video which didn’t use onions and used puréed tomatoes. I might try that version the next time. This particular video didn’t use any masala powders, but I went ahead and added it anyway.

Read on for the recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 3-4 tablespoons oil/ghee, divided
  • 1 medium potato, diced
  • 2 cups green peas
  • 1 medium onion, sliced into long pieces
  • 2 medium tomatoes, sliced into long pieces
  • half a bunch of coriander leaves
  • 3 green chilies
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 2” piece of ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • Salt as needed

Method:

  1. Pulse the green peas in a blender jar couple of times until it’s a rough coarse paste. If you are using frozen peas, it needs to be thawed before using.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoon oil in a pan. Add the cubed potatoes and cook for a couple of minutes. Now add the ground green peas paste. Cook for about 8-10 minutes, mixing frequently to ensure it doesn’t burn.
  3. Remove from heat, transfer the peas mixture into a bowl. Set aside for now.
  4. Make a paste of the green chilies, ginger, garlic and coriander leaves without adding any water. Keep aside.
  5. In a clean pan, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil or ghee. Once it’s hot, add the onions. Sauté until it turns pink. Add the tomatoes, turmeric powder, chili powder, coriander powder and salt. Mix well and cook for a couple of minutes until the tomatoes are mushy. Add the ground coriander paste now. Keep stirring to avoid burning. Keep cooking tomatoes are completely done and mushy.
  6. Add the green peas and potato mixture to the pan now. Mix well, cook for a minute or two. Add 2 cups of water and once it comes to a boil, turn the heat to low and let it boil for about 10 minutes. You can add more water to suit the consistency you prefer. Turn off the flame after ten minutes. Serve hot with rice or roti.

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Misal Pav

BM #113 : Week 4, Day 1
Theme : A-Z Curries

Have I ever mentioned that the Indian stores in US has a lot more variety in terms of grocery than the local stores in India? Since the stores here cater to all Indians, they are stocked up in stuff from all parts of India use. Where as a local South Indian store won’t stock up on an item like Goda Masala that’s not part of the South Indian lifestyle. They won’t be able to sell it and so naturally they won’t stock it up too.

The reason for me saying that is because I have never had Misal Pav at Trivandrum or Chennai. The first time I had this was at a chaat place couple of years back. It was here in US that I tried this popular recipe from Maharashtra!!

Anyway I was happy I had the opportunity to try it, because oh boy!! It was so delicious! I have already made the authentic version from scratch a couple of times, but I was not able to click pictures then. The recipe here is not the authentic version, it’s a shortcut all in one version from here. But this also tastes good, so now this is my go to recipe if I am not in a mood to make the masalas from scratch.

Read on for the recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 2-3 tablespoons oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 10-12 curry leaves
  • 4 green chilies or per taste
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 2” piece of ginger
  • 1 big onion, chopped
  • 3 medium tomatoes , chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon goda masala/garam masala/achar masala
  • 2 cups moong or moth sprouts
  • Coriander leaves to garnish
  • Salt to Taste

Method:

  1. In a small blender jar, make a coarse paste of green chilies, garlic and ginger. Keep aside.
  2. Pressure cook the sprouts with 4 cups of water for one whistle. Let the pressure release naturally.
  3. Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds and curry leaves. Once the mustard crackles, add the onions and sauté until pink. Add the ground chili paste and cook for a minute more. Add the tomatoes and mix it in. Now add all the masalas- turmeric, chili, coriander, cumin and goda masala (or it’s substitutes). Cover and cook until the tomatoes are mushy. Add a tablespoon or two of water if it’s too dry.
  4. Once everything is cooked through , add the sprouts along with the water it’s cooked in. Let it come to a boil and cover and cook for about ten minutes or until the oil floats on top. Turn off the heat.
  5. Sprinkle chopped coriander on top.
  6. To serve, add this curry to a bowl, add some farsan and finely chopped onions on top and serve with pav bread. I didn’t have any pav left, so I served with regular bread.

Lentil mushroom spaghetti

BM #113 : Week 2, Day 3
Theme : Protein Rich Dishes

Like I mentioned in an earlier post, I had a bunch of cookery books from our library before they closed for COVID 19. All the books are renewed remotely by them to avoid unnecessary fines. I had three instant pot books and I have used all three multiple times by now. One book is Vegan, which is more useful for me as I am a vegetarian. The other two books have a lot of meat based recipes, so a good amount recipes are of not any use to me. None of us are going to try every single recipe from a book anyway, so a book is great if you get one good reliable recipe that you can try again and again. I have a really big Hershey baking book with me. I have tried only two recipes from that book and those two recipes are something I have prepared many many times now. So for me, that book is a winner even though there are other 500 recipes that I am never going to prepare :-)

So back to the recipe here, this is from Stefanie Bundalo’s book Quick Prep Cooking with your Instant Pot. I have already tried couple of recipes from this book with good results. The lentil sauce is just one among those. It’s been awhile since I used the slow cook function in Instant Pot, so it was nice to try that. I made this in the morning so that we could serve the sauce for dinner with spaghetti.

Read on for the recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes 14 oz
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
  • 1 cup green lentils
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup carrots, chopped finely
  • Salt, pepper and red chili flakes – to taste
  • Parmesan cheese, for sprinkling on top
  • Cooked spaghetti, for serving

Method:

  1. Add everything except the cheese and spaghetti to the instant pot. Mix well. Check the salt and pepper amount and adjust if needed.
  2. Keep the lid, leave steam vent open (in VENTING position). This is important. Cook for 6 hours in “Slow Cook” mode. The book mentioned 10 hours, but I stopped at 6 hours and it was still fine.
  3. Once the lentils are cooked, mix everything well and serve on top of spaghetti or noodles of your choice. Sprinkle with some more Italian seasoning and Parmesan cheese if preferred.

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Moong Sprouts Salad

BM #113 : Week 2, Day 2
Theme : Protein rich recipes

I used to be a big fan of sprouts salad in my twenties. If I didn’t have time to make sprouts from scratch, I used to pick up readymade packets from the supermarket just to make these salads. My recipe was simple – add some tomatoes, maybe onions and a green chili to the sprouts. Season with salt and then add the most important thing- lemon juice! It was the pairing of lemon juice with sprouts that I liked the most.

All that changed when I got pregnant. Unfortunately for me, I didn’t just have morning sickness. Instead, I had morning/ afternoon/ night sickness and it continued until the minute I delivered my son. I used to throw up multiple times a day and naturally my food habits changed a lot during those months. Apple became a favorite because it was the one and only food item that wouldn’t cause vomiting. It was tough in the initial months, later I figured out that it doesn’t matter what I eat, I am going to throw up anyway. So it was all fine.

The sprout salad was one of things that I gave up during my pregnancy. It took me more than a decade to give it another chance. It’s great that I am able to enjoy it now :-).

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sprouts
  • 1/2 big tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • 1 small green chili, minced- optional
  • Salt as needed
  • Lemon juice as needed (I start with about 1/2 of a big lemon)

Method:

  1. In a bowl, add everything. Mix gently and taste test. Add more salt and lemon juice if needed. I like this with a lot of lemon juice.

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