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Thali Menu #136 -MILAAP – Celebrating the spirit of India

8 Aug, 2019

Milaap

India is truly a multicultural melting-pot with history dating back a few thousand years. No surprises therefore that this rich long history has left a mark on all aspects of life including food. India boasts of a culinary heritage that is unique and varied every few hundred kilometers, if you were to travel the length and breadth of the country.

This August as India celebrates her 72 year of independence, we present Milaap~ meaning confluence, where we will take you on a culinary journey criss-crossing the country, and present curated Thali menus of iconic dishes from four states (North, South, East, and West of India). We promise you, the Thalis will be as grand a celebration as they sound!

The Cuisines

Our second Milaap is with the states of Kashmir (North), Tamilnadu (South), Assam (East), and Gujarat (West). Each of these states has a distinct culinary tradition influenced by geography, long history of different invasions and distinctly unique cultures with almost no similarities in their food habits or the ingredients used, cooking styles or their dishes.

A challenge for us at Daana that we relished with delight, was to curate a menu that allows each state to shine through in equal measure with its culinary hallmarks and yet persent a perfect harmony and balance of flavours and textures.

We hope you enjoy this week’s thali as much as we enjoyed curating and cooking this for you.

Thali Menu

Recipe of the week

Fodniche Varan

Maharashtrian style tempered dal

For pressure cooking:

  • ½ cup Toor dal or split pigeon peas
  • 1 ½ cups Water
  • ¼ teaspoon Turmeric powder

For varan:

  • Salt to taste
  • 1 teaspoon Jaggery

For tempering:

  • 2 teaspoon Ghee
  • ½ teaspoon Cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon red chili powder
  • a pinch Asafoetida

Pressure cooking the Dal

  1. Wash Toor dal under running cold water till water runs clear.
  2. Soak the dal in enough water for at least 30 minutes.
  3. After 30 minutes, discard soaking water.
  4. Add dal to the pressure cooker with 1 ½ cups of water and turmeric powder.
  5. Close the lid, put the weight on and cook it on medium heat for 3-4 whistles, open the lid once the pressure is released.
  6. Mash or hand blend the dal till smooth.

Making Varan

  1. Add salt and jaggery to the dal. The dal needs to be thin consistency but not too watery, add water to get the desired consistency.
  2. Turn the heat to medium and bring the dal to a simmer.
  3. Let it simmer for 4-5 minutes.

Making the tempering

  1. Heat the ghee or oil in a small frying pan.
  2. Once hot add cumin seeds and let them sizzle.
  3. As seeds sizzle, turn off the stove, wait for a few seconds.

  4. Then add red chilli powder and asafoetida.

  5. Immediately add the tempering to the dal. Stir well.

  6. Serve hot with steamed rice.