Sunday, 5 July 2015

Ghugni - Dried Peas Gravy - Pressure Cook Method

Ghugni - Dried Peas Gravy - Pressure Cook Method

 If I can talk about comfort food. This simple ghugni which is highly flavorful and rich protein can never let you down with its taste!!

Lets have a short look over what is ghugni or ghoognee. Its a famous street food of Bengal, Assam, Orrisa and Bihar. Usually served as it is as chaat / made like gravy style and served with hot pakoda's / Served with flat Indian breads like puri paratha and rotis. With all different states having ghugni as specialty  there are high level of variations involved in the process of making it.

Basically Dried White peas or Dried yellow peas is used for making it. But I'am making use of  Dried Green Peas for a  different reason which I'll discuss it later in the article.

Sometimes Iftar for most of us becomes an excuse to have loads of junk food which can be a real trouble or considered as a bad diet. Females have a tough time to choose what to make for family at this point. And when kids and men have special demands then it more difficult to keep a check of healthy food. I decided to make ghugni this Ramadan as it is light and filling, packed with low carb and high protein yet very low in fats. Though ghugni is among my most liked food but still it was left unnoticed and forgotten for long dont know why :) Im sure it happens to all of us at a point of time. I had served it with pakoras and just yumm yumm!!

Getting back to the recipe

1 cup dired green peas should be soaked over night or maximum 5- 6 hrs. This ensures easy cooking, easy on tummy and no gastric formations. Once soaked get started with the cooking process

Onion - 1 large chopped or 2 medium size
Tomatoes - 2 large or 4 small size
Ginger garlic paste - 2 tsp
Red Chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder - 1.5 tsp heaped
Turmeric powder - 1/4th tsp
Garam Masala - 1tsp
Water - 1/4th cup + 3-4 cups more

Oil - 2 tbsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp or a little more
Methi seeds - 1/4th tsp
Cumin seeds - 1tsp
Dry Red Chillies - 4-5

- Add oil in a cooker and add tempering starting with mustard seeds, allow it to splutter in medium flame, Once it splutters add all other ingredients listed below temperings and cook over low flame till nice aroma emits, Make sure dont burn these, its very essential part for flavorings
- Add Chopped onion, tomatoes ginger garlic paste and all dry spices, add 1/4th cup water, salt  and all dry spices, saute it well for 3-5 mins in medium flame till nice aroma emits and all the raw smell fades of, oil starts leaving its sides (since less oil is used here, chances of oil leaving sides are minimum so go with the aroma).
You can also lower the flame and close the cooker pan with any lid, this will ensure slow cooking of masalas while you do other works (just an option, I do this and get back to room to escape humid weather of chennai :D )
- Once nice aroma is emitted and you find onion and tomatoes mushy coated with other masalas. Now add soaked peas and water 3-4 cups. Cook for 2 whistles.
- Allow the pressure to release on its own and you are ready with wonderful gughni.

Alternate method 1
Pressure cook peas with water for 2 whistles allow it to release on its own.
Prepare tempered masala base in a kadai and mix the pressure cooked pease into it. Mix well check for salt and spices, adjust consistency with water, give it another boil. Garnish and serve.

Alternate method 2
Prepare the base masala and blend it if you dont like chunks of onion and tomatoes. Make sure you minimize the dry chilli to 1 or 2 / Remove chillies before blending. Follow with pressure cooking peas option before or along with the spices base is your wish!!

- Add spices according to your taste.
- You can use white / yellow dried peas but personally I find those peas remains soft only till it is hot. I find dried green peas quick in cooking as well as mushy enough to be eaten with pakodas or when used for any side dish. However if you got the trick to keep yellow / white channa be soft even after it cools down after cooking go for it!!
- You can add lemon juice or dried mango powder if required for some tangy taste. But here the tomatoes I used were very sour so I did not add anything more to this.
- In case tanginess is felt more you can add some sugar and adjust it (very little)
- Adjust water as you like, Open stir cook the peas mixture for thicker gravy or add more water incase the gravy is too much thick than you desire.
- Can be kept in fridge upto a week stored in air tight container.

For making chaat similar to Ragda:
- You can omit tempering and make the ghugni as it. This can be later served with green and sweet chutney, raw onions along with samosas kachoris,  pakoras some nylon sev and coriander leaves. Go easy with your addition and enjoy tweaking the recipe as your likeness!! (spice level for chaat is perfect measurement as given in above recipe)

To Serve with Roti / bread / Puri / Paratha / Khakra / Idly / Dosa / Idyapam (yes it goes well along everything!!
When you have intention to serve this along the main course then make sure you do the tempering part as well as have the spice level more so that it gives a perfect taste when eaten with bland food!!

Hope you enjoyed this wonderful post of having ghugni as chaat and side dish both do try out and have fun with cooking!!

Until next cya.............

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