Punjabi Tinda Gravy Curry.
Back to dishes of the strictly vegetarian kind, a pond that I have not dipped my toe in for quite some time. I am tempted back by this beautiful recipe that features a vegetable that is not perhaps one you will find on any of the main stream supermarket shelves but will at your better than average Indian supermarket of which mine is one of the best, check this fruit and vegetable counter……..
If you can get this particular delicious example of vegetable delight it’s a Satsuma sized apple looking veg which is citrusy in taste, and is very much part of the gourd family. You can get it in tins too but again you’re going to need the Indian supermarket to pick those up as well.
Give it time they will get to the standard supermarket sometime soon just not right now, probably because they’re not familiar in the West and without that familiarity and demand, well you can work that out for yourself.
If you can’t get hold of the real deal you could of course use courgettes or young marrows and will offer pretty much the same result, that said I’m lucky I can get all that I recognise and a lot that I can’t but I’m working on that one. This was not a cheap vegetable though coming in at just under £2.00 per Kilo, some proteins come in cheaper than that, so veggie is not always the cheap alternative….
This recipe also features a TALIMPU or a bagar, a vital step that gives the dish a perfect punch, in the most traditional of ways it features three vital ingredients onions, green chillies and curry leaves that can make almost any dish taste the part. Dealing with the ingredients of the Talimpu is also not without tradition, in that the chillies are cut in rings or slit in 4 and thrown in a well of hot oil that’s been spluttering with a tablespoon of TALIMPU GINJALU (mixture of mustard seeds, split urad dal, and cumin). The chillies have to be fried well before you add the onions and curry leaves easy enough but important to the end result. The other element is a wet masala again a traditional element featuring onion and spices cooked and then ground, so all in all lots to keep you interested although this is not a complex dish the two elements of the Bagar and the wet Masala combine to make a very tasty dish indeed
Now you have all the vital info lets cook!
The Whats in it
Punjabi Tinda three or four to feed 2 persons
Yogurt 1 Tbsp
Red Chilli Powder 1/4 tsp
Turmeric Powder 1/4 tsp
Green Chillies 1
Salt to taste
Mustard Seeds 1/2 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1/2 tsp
Urad Dal 1/2 tsp
Whole Dried Red Chillies 3 – 4
Coriander Seeds 1/2 Tbsp
Oil 1 tsp
Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1/4 tsp
Urad Dal 1/4 tsp
Curry Leaves 5
Oil 1 tsp
300ml approx. of water or Vegetable stock
The How to
First thing there is a little preparation – wash, remove ends peel and chop the Punjabi Tinda.
Then peel and dice the onion. Remove stems, wash and slice and de seed the green chillies. Finally prep the yoghurt by whisking then set aside.
Now we can get down to the cooking thing…..
Masala first by heating a tsp of oil in your Karahi or heavy based pan, add all masala ingredients in order.
When the mustard seeds start spluttering and the mixture is aromatic, add the onion and salt. Fry till onion turns golden brown and remove from heat.
Cool the mixture to room temperature and grind it into smooth paste with little water, in your pestle and mortar or food processor if you like things done in a hurry:)
next we move on to the Talimpu…….
Heat a teaspoon of oil in your now nicely clean Karahi or heavy based pan, add all talimpu ingredients in order and again when the mustard seeds start spluttering, add chopped punjabi tinda, green chilli, tomato, turmeric powder and salt.
Now cover the pan and cook for about 5 minutes until the Tinda has softened
Then stir in the ground masala paste and about quarter cup of vegetable stock, cover gain!
Lower the heat to a simmer and allow to gently bubble away for at least 10 -15 minutes or until tinda is soft and kind of transparent, you may need to add a little more stock or water to keep things moist so don’t be scared to add as much as you think it needs.
This is important so if you need more than 15 minutes, do so as undercooked tinda is………. well not the greatest!
Now uncover and stir in the red chilli powder, whisked yogurt and season with salt if necessary.
Garnish with some fresh Coriander and let the eating commence…..
You can serve this with either Rice or Chapatis, or Rotis a little meat or fish would also not do it any harm either so enjoy….