Monday, 9 February 2015

PITHORE CAKES ON GREEN CHICKPEAS MASALA - BRINGING THE FLAVOURS OF RAJASTHAN ON A PLATTER


Rajasthani Cuisine has mainly been influenced and is a result of its warfare-oriented Rajput aristocracy and trading Marwari community. These two communities have developed very distinct cuisines which have been tailor made to suit the dessert climate and arid lands. One can also see prominent influences of its neighbouring states in Rajasthani Cuisine. The intriguing taste of the huge repetoiré of supremely delectable dishes, served piping hot will leave a prominent mark of Rajasthan's rich, traditional and historical backdrop long after your taste buds have been enveloped in a tornado of sublime flavours. 

In spite of the numerous culinary constraints, Rajasthani cuisine makes best use of the available resources and ingredients to pull out an ace of lip smacking dishes. In Rajasthan as water is a premium, food is generally cooked in milk, ghee(clarified butter) many a times. 





Besan or Gram Flour is a mainstay of Marwari food mainly because of the scarcity of vegetables in this arid land. Marwari cuisine is therefore a fine example of survival amidst constraints and simultaneously bringing the best  out of it.

When the topic of our this months BLOG HOP was chosen as Rajasthani Cuisine I decided to put forth a platter which would have four components. I wanted to introduce my friends in the other part of the Globe to a dish which they could easily prepare wherever they were and love the taste too.


The main component of my dish is a delicious Rajasthani Savory Cake made from gram flour and yogurt known as PITHORE. Many of my non-Indian friends must be familiar with the very popular Indian snack Dhokla. Although in appearance PITHORE resembles DHOKLA, but the method of preparation of both are very different. PITHORE alone can be served as a snack with Masala tea or Butter Milk.


I however placed the PITHORE after shaping it like a mini cake on a bed of piquant GREEN CHICKPEAS MASALA/CURRY. I also wanted a tounge tapping, lip smacking element in my dish which I introduced in the form of a tangy zesty MEETHI CHUTNEY/SWEET DATES AND TAMARIND CHUTNEY. The crunch and drama I have put in with a very popular Rajasthani snack called MATHRI which is basically a kind of  flaky biscuit. 



Although there are quite a few flavours going on in my dish, each one of them is well defined, complementing the other beautifully without loosing its own essence, neither masking the taste of the other. This dish has been quite a hit as an entrée at many of my lunches and dinners. 

So let's get cooking....... 

Reference : 

PITHORE CAKES ON GREEN CHICKPEAS MASALA WITH SWEET CHUTNEY AND MATHRI RECIPE :


CUISINE : INDIAN/RAJASTHANI
TYPE : ENTRÉE
TIME : 20 MINUTES PREPARATION + 30 MINUTES COOKING +
SERVES : 3 - 4

MAKING THE PITHORE CAKES :

INGREDIENTS :

FOR THE DRY SPICE MIX :

1) 1 1/2 Tbsp Black Pepper ( Whole) / Sabut Kali Mirch
2) 1 1/2 Tbsp Cumin Seeds /Jeera
3) 1 1/2 Tbsp Fennel Seeds / Saunf
4) 2 Tbsp Coriander Seeds / Sukha Dhaniya
5) 2-4 Dried Red Chillies

  

FOR THE PITHORE CAKE MIX :

1) 1 1/2 Kg Hung Yogurt / Chakka Dahi
2) 500 Gms Gram Flour/Besan
3) 3 Tbsp Clarified Butter/Ghee
4) 4 Tbsp Semolina/Suji
5) 1Tbsp Red Chilly Powder/Kuti huyi Lal mirch
6) 1 Tbsp Turmeric Powder/Haldi
7) Salt to taste


LET'S GET COOKING IN SIMPLE STEPS :

STEP 1:
Dry Roast all the spices under the Dry Spice Mix, till fragrant. Please take care not to burn them. Cool and grind them in a food processor into a fine powder. Keep aside.

  


STEP 2:
In a mixing bowl add Yogurt, Gram Flour, Red Chilly Powder, Turmeric Powder and season with salt. Mix Well. To this mixture add the Powder you made in STEP 1 and mix it well into the mixture.

 




STEP 3:
Heat clarified butter in a wok or pan. Use about 1/2 Tbsp leaving the rest for shallow frying later on. Now pour the above mixture and cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring continuously till the mixture does not stick to your hands when you scoop out a small ball shaped mixture and carefully after cooling it a bit press it between your fingers.



    


STEP 4:
Grease a tray and spread the mixture uniformly and allow it to cool. Cut circular pieces using a cookie cutter into desired size from the set and cooled mixture.

  




STEP 5:
Coat these cake like discs with Semolina on both sides. Shallow fry the PITHORE CAKES in a non-stick pan using the remaining clarified butter. Fry till both sides turn golden brown.






PITHORE CAKES ARE READY.


NEXT WE PREPARE  GREEN CHICKPEAS MASALA/CURRY :





GREEN CHICKPEAS MASALA/CURRY RECIPE :

INGREDIENTS:

1) 2 Tbsp Oil
2) 1/2 Tbsp Cumin seeds/Jeera
3) 2 Chopped Onions
4) 1Tbsp Ginger Garlic Paste/Adrak Lasun paste
5) 2 Chopped Tomatoes
6) 1Tsp Turmeric Powder/Haldi
7) 1 Tbsp Red Chilli Powder/Kuti hui Lal Mirch
8) 1/2 Tbsp Corriander powder/Dhaniya
9) 350 Gms Green Chickpeas/Hara Chana
10) 1 Tsp Cumin Powder/Jeera Powder
11) 1 Tsp Fennel Powder/Saunf powder
12) 1 Tbsp Garam Masala
13) Salt to taste
14) 4 Tbsp chopped Fresh Green Coriander

LET'S GET COOKING IN EASY STEPS:

STEP 1:
Either soak the green chickpeas overnight or pressure cook them a little longer till they are soft and mash easily with your fingers. Chop the Onions, tomatoes and fresh coriander leaves.

STEP 2:
In a wok or pan take oil. Once hot add the cumin seeds to crackle to golden. Add in the onions and wait till the onions turn transparent. Now add chopped tomatoes and ginger garlic paste. Sautée till the tomatoes soften and the rest of the ingredients become aromatic. Now add all the remaining dry spices except Garam Masala by referring to the Ingredients list given above. Mix well and sautée till all the spices, aromatics integrate nicely.

STEP 3:
Add in the boiled  green chickpeas and after giving everything in the wok a nice mix, let it all simmer away for a couple of minutes. Add in the Garam Masala. Check for seasoning and add salt if required. Mix well and cook on sim for 5 minutes. Remove from the flame and garnish with the fresh coriander leaves.

Serve piping hot.

MATHRI RECIPE:





INGREDIENTS :

1) 1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
2) 1/2 Tsp Carom seeds/Ajwain
3)  1 Tsp Red Chilli Powder
4) 1 Tbsp Clarified Butter /Ghee
5)  1/2 Tsp Salt
6) Water to knead the dough

GET COOKING WITH ME IN EASY STEPS:

STEP 1:
In a bowl, combine all the ingredients and using water knead to a smooth stiff dough.

STEP 2:
Divide the dough into small portions and roll out each portion into a rectangular Roti or flat bread. Do not roll the dough into a very thin roti or flat bread. Cut into Triangles.

STEP 3:
Bake the triangles till golden and crisp. Keep aside.

SWEET / MEETHI CHUTNEY RECIPE :





INGREDIENTS:

1) 200 Gms Dates/Khajur
2) 100 Gms Tamarind /Imli
3) 1/2 Tsp Red Chilli Powder
4) 1/2 Tsp Roasted Cumin Seeds /Jeera Powder
5) 1/4 Tsp Black Salt/Sanchal
6) Salt to taste

MAKE CHUTNEY WITH ME IN EASY STEPS :

STEP 1:
Remove seeds from the dates and Tamarind. Wash and Add 1 teacup of water. Leave soaking for 2 hours.

STEP 2:
Cook for 5 minutes. Thereafter blend in a liquidiser and strain. Add chilli powder, cumin seed powder  and Black salt and mix well.

STEP 3:
Store in a jar and use as and when required.

PLATING :

Place 1 portion of chickpeas masala/curry in the centre of the plate like forming a circular shaped bed. Place a PITHORE Cake on this bed, sprinkle fresh chopped coriander and sweet chutney. Place another PITHORE cake, sprinkling again with chutney and coriander leaves. Place a MATHRI on the top side of the upper PITHORE Cake.
Serve.

  

  
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PITHORE CAKES ON GREEN CHICKPEAS MASALA WITH SWEET CHUTNEY AND MATHRI RECIPE :

MAKING THE PITHORE CAKES :

INGREDIENTS :

FOR THE DRY SPICE MIX :

1) 1 1/2 Tbsp Black Pepper ( Whole) / Sabut Kali Mirch
2) 1 1/2 Tbsp Cumin Seeds /Jeera
3) 1 1/2 Tbsp Fennel Seeds / Saunf
4) 2 Tbsp Coriander Seeds / Sukha Dhaniya
5) 2-4 Dried Red Chillies

FOR THE PITHORE CAKE MIX :

1) 1 1/2 Kg Hung Yogurt / Chakka Dahi
2) 500 Gms Gram Flour/Besan
3) 3 Tbsp Clarified Butter/Ghee
4) 4 Tbsp Semolina/Suji
5) 1Tbsp Red Chilly Powder/Kuti huyi Lal mirch
6) 1 Tbsp Turmeric Powder/Haldi
7) Salt to taste

LET'S GET COOKING IN SIMPLE STEPS :

STEP 1:
Dry Roast all the spices under the Dry Spice Mix, till fragrant. Please take care not to burn them. Cool and grind them in a food processor into a fine powder. Keep aside.
STEP 2:
In a mixing bowl add Yogurt, Gram Flour, Red Chilly Powder, Turmeric Powder and season with salt. Mix Well. To this mixture add the Powder you made in STEP 1 and mix it well into the mixture.
STEP 3:
Heat clarified butter in a wok or pan. Use about 1/2 Tbsp leaving the rest for shallow frying later on. Now pour the above mixture and cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring continuously till the mixture does not stick to your hands when you scoop out a small ball shaped mixture and carefully after cooling it a bit press it between your fingers.
STEP 4:
Grease a tray and spread the mixture uniformly and allow it to cool. Cut circular pieces using a cookie cutter into desired size from the set and cooled mixture.
STEP 5:
Coat these cake like discs with Semolina on both sides. Shallow fry the PITHORE CAKES in a non-stick pan using the remaining clarified butter. Fry till both sides turn golden brown.
PITHORE CAKES ARE READY.


NEXT WE PREPARE  GREEN CHICKPEAS MASALA/CURRY :



GREEN CHICKPEAS MASALA/CURRY RECIPE :

INGREDIENTS:

1) 2 Tbsp Oil
2) 1/2 Tbsp Cumin seeds/Jeera
3) 2 Chopped Onions
4) 1Tbsp Ginger Garlic Paste/Adrak Lasun paste
5) 2 Chopped Tomatoes
6) 1Tsp Turmeric Powder/Haldi
7) 1 Tbsp Red Chilli Powder/Kuti hui Lal Mirch
8) 1/2 Tbsp Corriander powder/Dhaniya
9) 350 Gms Green Chickpeas/Hara Chana
10) 1 Tsp Cumin Powder/Jeera Powder
11) 1 Tsp Fennel Powder/Saunf powder
12) 1 Tbsp Garam Masala
13) Salt to taste
14) 4 Tbsp chopped Fresh Green Coriander

LET'S GET COOKING IN EASY STEPS:

STEP 1:
Either soak the green chickpeas overnight or pressure cook them a little longer till they are soft and mash easily with your fingers. Chop the Onions, tomatoes and fresh coriander leaves.

STEP 2:
In a wok or pan take oil. Once hot add the cumin seeds to crackle to golden. Add in the onions and wait till the onions turn transparent. Now add chopped tomatoes and ginger garlic paste. Sautée till the tomatoes soften and the rest of the ingredients become aromatic. Now add all the remaining dry spices except Garam Masala by referring to the Ingredients list given above. Mix well and sautée till all the spices, aromatics integrate nicely.

STEP 3:
Add in the boiled  green chickpeas and after giving everything in the wok a nice mix, let it all simmer away for a couple of minutes. Add in the Garam Masala. Check for seasoning and add salt if required. Mix well and cook on sim for 5 minutes. Remove from the flame and garnish with the fresh coriander leaves.

Serve piping hot.

MATHRI RECIPE:

INGREDIENTS :

1) 1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
2) 1/2 Tsp Carom seeds/Ajwain
3)  1 Tsp Red Chilli Powder
4) 1 Tbsp Clarified Butter /Ghee
5)  1/2 Tsp Salt
6) Water to knead the dough

GET COOKING WITH ME IN EASY STEPS:

STEP 1:
In a bowl, combine all the ingredients and using water knead to a smooth stiff dough.

STEP 2:
Divide the dough into small portions and roll out each portion into a rectangular Roti or flat bread. Do not roll the dough into a very thin roti or flat bread. Cut into Triangles.

STEP 3:
Bake the triangles till golden and crisp. Keep aside.

SWEET / MEETHI CHUTNEY RECIPE :

INGREDIENTS:

1) 200 Gms Dates/Khajur
2) 100 Gms Tamarind /Imli
3) 1/2 Tsp Red Chilli Powder
4) 1/2 Tsp Roasted Cumin Seeds /Jeera Powder
5) 1/4 Tsp Black Salt/Sanchal
6) Salt to taste

MAKE CHUTNEY WITH ME IN EASY STEPS :

STEP 1:
Remove seeds from the dates and Tamarind. Wash and Add 1 teacup of water. Leave soaking for 2 hours.

STEP 2:
Cook for 5 minutes. Thereafter blend in a liquidiser and strain. Add chilli powder, cumin seed powder  and Black salt and mix well.

STEP 3:
Store in a jar and use as and when required.

PLATING :

Place 1 portion of chickpeas masala/curry in the centre of the plate like forming a circular shaped bed. Place a PITHORE Cake on this bed, sprinkle fresh chopped coriander and sweet chutney. Place another PITHORE cake, sprinkling again with chutney and coriander leaves. Place a MATHRI on the top side of the upper PITHORE Cake.
Serve.
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KEY INGREDIENTS :


PITHORE CAKE:

1) Whole Black Pepper/Sabut Kali Mirch, 2) Cumin Seeds/Jeera, 3) Coriander Seeds/Dhaniya, 4) Fennel Seeds/Saunf, 5) Dried Red Chillies/Sabut Lal Mirch, 6) Hung Curd/Chakka Dahi, 7) Gram Flour/Besan, 8) Semolina/Suji, 9) Red Chilli Powder, 10) Turmeric Powder, 11) Clarified Butter/Ghee, 12) Salt

GREEN CHICKPEAS MASALA:
1) Green Chickpeas/Hara Chana, 2) Oil, 3) Cumin/Jeera Seeds, 4) Onion, 5) Ginger Garlic Paste, 6) Tomatoes, 7) Turmeric Powder, 8) Red Chilli Powder, 9) Coriander Powder, 10) Fennel Powder/Saunf, 11) Garam Masala, 12) Fresh Green Coriander, 13) Cumin Powder, 14) Salt

MATHRI:
1)Whole Wheat Flour/Gehun Ka Atta, 2) Clarified Butter/Ghee, 3) Red Chilli Powder, 4) Salt, 5) Carom Seeds/Ajwain, 6) Water

SWEET/MEETHI CHUTNEY:
1) Dates/Khajur, 2) Tamarind/Imli, 3) Chilli Powder, 4) Roasted Cumin/Bhuna Jeera Powder, 5) Black Salt/Sanchal, 6) Salt