Honouring India’s enormous culinary legacy

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BY N. LOTHUNGBENI HUMTSOE

New Delhi– As we celebrate the 74th Republic Day, some individuals start their day by watching the flag-hoisting ceremony, while others start slowly, expecting to spend the holiday relaxing. In any case, everyone will be surrounded by the essence of this national event. But, as we all know, no Indian event is complete without authentic Indian cuisine. So, for all foodies out there, why not try these delectable step-by-step recipes from some of the industry’s most well-known chefs?

A few iconic recipes have survived over time in Indian manuscripts; these long-lost dishes are the cornerstones of the renowned Indian cuisine that the rest of the world enjoys today.

Anirudh Deshpande, the executive chef at The Westin Goa, carefully selected these recipes to pay homage to these Golden meals and serve them with a modern twist. The Fara Taco with Ahuna Gosht is one of the specialty dishes from the Trendsetter Kitchen of the Westin, Goa.

AHUNA GOSHT FARA

Fara is lentil-filled dumplings that come from Eastern Uttar Pradesh’s sun-kissed plains. The dish is typically prepared to commemorate the Harvest Festival and represents happiness and wealth.

While Ahuna Gosht has roots in the prosperous farmlands of Bihar. The meal is a lamb stew cooked in one pot with whole garlic cloves, spices, and the meat’s own fat and curd. The Dum Pukht way of cooking, which the Nawabs of Lucknow under the direction of Nawab Wajid Ali Shah have rather mastered, is the main cooking technique used by Ahuna Ghost.

For Ahuna Gosht I Yield: 1 portion

Ingredients:

Mutton curry cut 250gm

Onion Finely Chopped 20gm

Tomato Paste 20gm

Ginger Paste 10gm

Garlic Paste 10gm

Kashmiri Red Chili Powder 2gm

Garam Masala Powder 2gm

Coriander Powder 2gm

Turmeric Powder 1gm

Cumin Powder 2gm

Green Chili Chopped 2gm

Ginger Julienne 1gm

Chat Masala 2gm

Lemon 1gm

Oil 100gm

Salt To Taste

Chopped Coriander to Garnish 10gm

Cinnamon 1gm

Cardamom 1gm

Method:

Heat Oil in a pan and add Cinnamon, Cloves, and Green Cardamom and saute it for half a minute

Add chopped onions and fry this until golden brown, after which you need to add a fresh ginger garlic paste

Add the mutton and cook it till it turns brown and then sprinkle all the spices

Add a fresh tomato puree and adjust the seasoning as per your taste cook for a few minutes and then let it sit for a while whilst it simmers

Once the gravy is of a medium-thick consistency garnish with Chopped Coriander, and grated ginger and put it aside to cool to stuff the fara

For Fara I Yield: 3 portions

Ingredients:

4 cups White Urad Dal (Split)

1 cup Chana dal (Bengal Gram Dal)

1 cup Arhar dal (Split Toor Dal)

Whole Wheat Flour

1/2 teaspoon Cumin seeds

1/4 teaspoon Garam masala powder

1/3 teaspoon Turmeric powder

1 teaspoon Red Chilli powder

1 teaspoon Asafoetida

3 cloves Garlic

2 Green Chillies, paste

Salt, as required

For tempering

Oil, as required

1/2 teaspoon Cumin seeds

10 Curry leaves

Asafoetida (hing) , a pinch

For garnish

Coriander (Dhania) leaves, a few springs chopped

Method:

Soak the urad dal, chana dal, and matar dal for about four to five hours.

Make a coarsely ground yet fine paste of all dals and mix in the dry masalas, garlic, and chili paste (salt as required)

Meanwhile prepare the dough by adding wheat flour, water, and salt.

Make thick puri out of the dough and add the dal paste on one side of the puri and cover with the other side like a resting taco

Cook the far in a steamer for about 20 to 30 minutes, then cool.

Heat oil in a pan and add cumin, curry leaves, and asafoetida and saute the fara

Once it is done, stuff in the Ahuna Gosht and garnish it with fresh coriander

Tiranga Pulao by Swapnadeep Mukherjee, Executive Chef, The Metropolitan Hotel & Spa

Ingredients:

Cooked rice 300gm

For orange rice

Small onion (chopped) 20gm

Tomato purees 50gm

Red chili powder 2gm

Garam masala 1gm

Mustard seeds 1gm

Ghee 10gm

Salt to taste

For white rice

Ghee 20gm

Mustard seed 1gm

For Green Rice

Boiled Spinach (puree) 50gm

Green chilies 2 nos

Cashew nuts Paste 20gm

Mustard seeds 1gm

Ghee 10gm

Method:

Orange rice: Heat the ghee in a big pan and add the mustard seeds. Once the seeds splutter, add onions and saute for a minute. Add tomato puree and stir for a while. Add salt, red chilli powder, and garam masala. Cook till the ghee is released and starts floating to the surface. Add the cooked rice and mix with the masala.

White rice: Heat ghee and add the mustard seeds till they start spluttering. Add salt, and cooked rice and mix very well.

Green rice: Grind the green chillies, spinach, and cashew nuts in a mixer grinder (with water) till they turn into a thick paste.

Heat the ghee and add mustard seeds till they splutter. add the green paste and mix well

Saute till the raw smell is gone.

Add the remaining cooked rice, and salt and mix well.

Arrange the three types of rice according to the national flag of India and serve hot!

Gulab Jamun and Saffron Pannacotta with trio of Rabri

On the occasion of the 74th Republic Day, Abhijeet Bagwe, Executive Chef of Novotel Mumbai International Airport, creates Gulab Jamun Pannacotta to highlight the primitive sweet meal with a touch of extrinsic cuisine from a different country. When it comes to flavourings, Pannacotta has a silky texture and a vanilla flavour, which matches the fried ball of a dough produced from milk solids and semolina soaked in aromatic syrup.

For making pannacotta

1cup milk

1cup cream

1/2 cup of sugar

1 ready gulab jamun

2 ml of vanilla essence

Pinch of saffron

5 grams of gelatin

For making Rabri

4 cups of milk

1 Cup of sugar

Edible colour orange

Edible colour green

How to make:

For making pannacotta heat sugar, cream, and milk together with vanilla essence.

Add gelatin into a mixture and cool it down, in your desired mould put half a piece of gulab jamun and pour pannacotta mixture with saffron into your mould.

For making rabri reduce milk and sugar up to 20 per cent, divide into three and add food colour

Do plating as per the image.

Tiranga Masala Bhat

Chef Jerson Fernandes, Culinary Director at Novotel Mumbai Juhu Beach, has created a Tiranga Masala Bhat meal that captures the essence of Republic Day. The recipe is meticulously executed to ensure that the colours and flavours of the recipe complement one another.

The meal is a mash-up of actual joyful celebrations, with each item representing our country’s prosperity, diversified culture, traditions, rich flora and fauna, and proud legacy. Some of the dish’s primary elements include organic components sourced from farmers-our actual heroes-natural colours from fruits and vegetables, and locally sourced ingredients to promote sustainability.

Efforts have been made to retain the authenticity of the dish, yet giving it a twist of taste and flavour. The dishes are integral to the patriotic celebrations of every Indian for the emotional connection they possess.

Ingredients:

Basmati Rice 300gms

Spinach Paste 100gms

Carrot Paste 100gms

Curd 50gms

Cream 150gms

Chopped Onions 150gms

Chopped Garlic 30gms

Cumin Seeds 1tblspn

Mustard Seeds 1/2 tblspn

Curry Leaves 2 sprigs

Red Chillies 4-5nos

Salt To Taste

Pepper Powder to Taste

Tomato Puree 200 gms

Peanuts 100 gms

Chana Dal 100gms

Corriander 1 sprig

Mint 1 sprig

Oil 100ml

Butter 50gms

Ghee 40gms

Chilly Powder 1 tblspn

Garam Masala Powder 3 tblspn

Cumin Powder 3 tblspn

Method:

Wash and soak the basmati rice for 20 minutes. Drain the water and boil it to perfection.

For the carrot rice, heat ghee in a pan, add cumin seeds, mustard seeds, curry leaves, onions, and garlic, and saute well. Once onions go translucent, add the carrot puree and cook well, add boiled basmati rice, cream, and garam masala powder and mix to get saffron-coloured rice. Check for seasoning

For the spinach rice, heat ghee in a pan, add cumin seeds, mustard seeds, curry leaves, onions, and garlic, and saute well. Once the onions go translucent, add the spinach puree, chopped coriander, and mint and cook well, add boiled basmati rice, cream, and garam masala powder and mix to get green-coloured rice. Check for seasoning.

For the curd rice, heat oil in a pan, add cumin seeds, mustard seeds, and curry leaves, and saute well. Once cold add curd, cream, basmati rice, chopped ginger, and salt and mix well. Check for seasoning.

For the tomato sauce, boil tomatoes, make a concasee, and temper it using garlic, onions, salt, pepper, chilly powder, cumin powder, and garam masala powder.

Start plating by using a ring mould brushed with butter to plate the 3 flavours of rice one above the other to resemble colours of the flag.

Top it with beaten curd and a rolled crispy papad and fresh sprigs of coriander/garden greens.

The tomato sauce has to be poured around the moulded rice.

The beaten curd has to be mixed with cumin powder and lined on the side, over which you place roasted peanuts, chana dal, fried red chillies, curry leaves, and edible flowers of your choice (either rose petals or baby sunflowers)

Accompany with a lemon wedge to squeeze before eating.

Chefs tip: Always brush butter/oil on the inner surface of the ring mould to ensure the rice grains don’t stick to it while demoulding. Ensure while roasting the papad, it is hot while being rolled to get the desired shape and finish. If it’s cold, it will break while rolling.

Tricolour Idli by Chef Anand Rawat, Corporate Chef Head at Noormahal Palace Hotel, Karnal

Ingredients:

500 gms urad dal

1 kg idli rawa

5 gram cooking soda salt (as per taste)

For colour:

tricolour idli

50 gms carrot puree

50 gms spinach puree, blanched 2-3 okra

Method:

Wash and soak urad dal and idli rawa separately. Urad dal needs to be soaked for 5 to 6 hours or overnight.

Drain the excess water and start grinding the urad dal with some salt in a wet grinder or blender to prepare the batter.

Add some water if needed and blend till you get nice frothy thick and smooth batter.

Squeeze out excess water from rava and add to the urad dal batter. Mix well and keep aside for fermentation in a warm place for a few hours.

Boil carrots and blanch spinach separately and put it in a blender for fine puree for the colour.

Once the batter is ready, take some batter in 3 separate bowls. Add the carrot puree and spinach puree to the 2 parts of batter separately and stir nicely to get the desired colour. Keep the 3rd part of batter as it is.

Take the idli mould, insert muslin cloth, sprinkle some water and keep aside. Preheat the idli steamer.

With a help of a spoon, first add the orange colour idli batter in the idli mould then the plain idli batter and the third with the green idli batter.

Cut one okra and place it on the centre of white layer of the idli batter.

Cook the tricolour idlis in the preheated steamer for about 15 to 20 minutes. Idlis should be soft, light and fluffy.

Remove the tricolour idlis and serve hot with sambhar and chutney. (IANS)

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