Saturday, October 4, 2008

Kolhapuri Vegetable Curry / Rassa Bhaji

This is a very spicy and tangy curry which is perfect to have on a cold, rainy day. Kolhapuri curries or sabzi is spicy and very flavorful. Kolhapuri chicken and mutton curries are very popular in Maharashtra. "Rassa" means gravy, so the curries usually have quite a bit of gravy with the meat or vegetables. I decided to try this rassa curry using vegetables. The red color of the curry is due to the byadgi chili I use in the masala. This chili is mild in pungency and imparts a very red color to the curry. Alternatively, Kashmiri chili can also be used to impart red color.  Byadgi or kashmiri chilies are less pungent in flavor. Other varieties of chilies can be used to impart more pungency. Here is the recipe.

1 capsicum
1 potato
3 cups cauliflower cut into big pieces of 2 inches each
1/2 cup peas
1 teaspoon chopped ginger
3 medium tomatoes
1 medium onion
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 1/2 tablespoon coriander seeds
4-5 red chilies (byadgi)
1/2 inch stick of cinnamon
3 tablespoon grated coconut
3 cloves
1/4 teaspoon tamarind concentrate
2 cardamom
6 tablespoon coriander leaves or cilantro
2-3 pepper corn
oil for frying
salt for taste

Cut capsicum into two inch pieces each and fry it for 5-10 minutes till brown on all sides. Fry cauliflower for 4-5 minutes on high flame till crisp. Chop onion into small pieces. In a tablespoon of oil add chopped ginger and onion. Fry onion till brown. Chop tomatoes into small pieces and add it to the onion. Cook tomato till soft.
Soak red chilies in water for 5-10 minutes. Grind red chilies, coconut, cloves, cinnamon, cardamom, pepper, coriander seeds and cumin seeds into a very fine paste. Add this paste to the tomato-onion mixture. Add tamarind and salt for taste. Add the vegetables in the curry and cook the curry till the vegetables are soft. Garnish with coriander leaves. Serve hot with roti or rice

Preparation time: 40 minutes
Serves: 3-4

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