Friday, March 6, 2009

Amla Kadhi (Indian Gooseberry Sauce)

It is a tangy, tempered sauce prepared by mixing chickpea flour (besan) with water in which Gooseberies are simmered over medium heat.
Tangy flavour in kadhi comes from sour Amla (Gooseberries). Cooked Amla pieces are utilised to make Pakodis (fritters) with besan.


For the Pakodis (fritters):

  • 1 cup Gram flour (Besan)
  • 1 tsp red chili powder (optional)
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/2 cup of fresh finely chopped coriander
  • Cooking oil for deep-frying
For the Kadhi:
  • 2 tbsp Besan (Bengal gram flour)
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp red chili powder (optional)
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 4 cloves of garlic chopped finely
  • 2 green chilies slit lengthwise
  • 4 whole dried red chili
  • Pinch of asafetida powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp Cooking Oil
  • 2 tbsp ghee

  • Put the Gooseberries in a pan with 8-10 cups of water. Cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes until soft. Now these boiled gooseberries will be used to make Pakodis for Kadhi and drained out water (in which gooseberries are boiled) will be used to make Kadhi.
  • Mix Gooseberries water, 2 tbsp of Bengal gram flour, turmeric powder, red chili powder, coriander powder and salt to taste. Whisk to ensure there are no lumps.
  • In a deep pan heat oil. Add mustard seeds. When it stops spluttering, add cumin and fenugreek seeds, green chilies and garlic and cook till pale brown. Now add Besan mixture to it and stir continuously. First cook on a high flame till the mixture boils. Simmer then and allow cooking slowly. Add water if necessary.
  • While the Kadhi is getting cooked as above, mix all the Pakodi ingredients together to form a thick batter (as for fritters).
  • Deseed the boiled gooseberries and cut them into small pieces. Add these pieces to the Pakodi batter.
  • Heat the oil for deep-frying, on a medium flame. Use a tablespoon (or your hand if you are more comfortable with that) to drop portions of batter into the hot oil. Fry till golden, drain, remove from the oil and add to the simmering Kadhi.
  • Adjust sourness of Kadhi by adding lemon juice if needed.
  • Tempering: To make ‘tadka’, heat ghee in a small pan, add asafetida and whole dried red chilies. Now add ½ tsp red chili powder and immediately pour over simmering Kadhi and Pakodi mix before chili powder gets burned. Now turn off the fire. The Kadhi should have thickened slightly by now.
  • Take out Kadhi in a serving dish and garnish with more ‘tadka’ ghee.
  • Serve with piping hot plain boiled rice.

Do You Know:
Chick Pea Flour is wonder flour in the Indian kitchen. The flour, milled from hulled and roasted Kala Chana and is called variously as chickpea flour, gram flour or Besan.

It is second only to wheat flour in popularity. It is not only protein-rich, but also flavorsome.

In India, it is used as a binding agent for Koftas, kebabs (meatballs or vegetable balls), in a batter for fritters and as the base for countless savory snacks.
Besan is also used as a kitchen beauty ingredient. Indian women regularly make homemade face packs to use as a face scrub and toner, mixed with milk and cream and drops of rose water.

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