The frequent and sudden power cuts have become irritating, not to mention the water shortage!
But the sudden, heavy showers yesterday as I was walking back home from office set everything right! I enjoyed feeling the raindrops as it caught me unaware without an umbrella. I got drenched from head to toe, but loved having ‘raindrops (keep) falling on my head‘. I smiled to myself singing ‘rim jhim gire saawan‘, and was carried away by memories. During our annual reunion at my parents’ house in Secunderabad my sisters and I would play rain themed antakshri in our backyard. We would sing loud, sing together, our songs interspersed with laughter and giggles, anecdotes and narrations. Bollywood will always be a part of those memories! Rains also bring visions of my time in hostel, when I forced two really calm and placid friends of mine to rush out in the downpour to get drenched with me. We hogged on ice creams braving our way through puddles and slush. Time had flown. I forced myself to come back to the present.
By then I had reached our society, in time to see my son splashing and dancing in his typical ‘baaraati’ style in the rain, my daughter playing hide n seek with her friends in the rain. And right then I became a child. Again. The power cuts did not matter anymore – that evening we played ‘build a story’, and had a candle light dinner and everything was right. The mood was jolly. And the next morning I wanted to make something fresh, uplifting, flavourful. Gatte ki subzi!
I owe this one to B and M. B is a close Sindhi friend and colleague who churns out the most amazing dishes. In the inception of our ‘lunch group’ friendship I remember that B used to make her dishes quite oily like most of my North Indian friends. A slight turn of events prompted her to cook less oily and healthier dishes. Mind you! Her dishes were equally tasty!
B and I used to be the only ones who cooked ‘gutte ka subzi‘ in office. Mine was kadhi like (curd based), like my Rajasthani neighbour’s. M Aunty and her Daughter-in-Law K are both wonderful cooks and generously call me to taste (in generous amounts) most of their luscious creations. Many a time I have not been able to sustain the enticing aroma emanating from their kitchen and wafting to my flat, and have knocked before they could offer! The gatta version they showed was the only one I knew of, till one day B came up with this creation smothered in a green gravy. Lunch time in office is never boring!
I asked her the secret and tried it once. The addition of mint was a mistake but it was a delicious twist that lifted the dish to a different dimension altogether. The recipe has been well accepted and am told its great. Now P insists on having it cooked only in green gravy. B’s recipe is simple and quick, and it draws several compliments.
Recipe: Gatte / Gutte ki subzi ~ Gluten free gram flour dumplings in green sauce
(Please adjust the seasonings and flavour to suit your taste – mine is moderately spicy)
Besan or Gram flour (Preferably roasted slightly) – 1 cup
Salt to taste
Kasuri methi (Dried fenugreek leaves) – 1/2 tsp.
Oil – 1/4 + 1/4 tsp.
Red chilli powder – as per taste – I used a little less than 1/4tsp.
Haldi / Turmeric pdr. – 1/4tsp.
Warm water OR thin buttermilk – – 1/4 cup
Water – 1/2litre
1. Mix all the dry ingredients and 1/4tsp. oil in a bowl.
3. If the dough turns a little sticky (will happen if the besan is not roasted), brush the oil on the dough to bring it together. The dough should be as stiff as those for puri or akki roti.
4. Keep aside for 10 minutes. Take out bite sized chunks of the dough and form roll them out as shown below. The thickness of the roll is about a cm. Keep aside after forming similar rolls with the entire dough.
5. Heat 1/2litre water and let it come to a boil. Add the rolls at this time and
These freeze well. I have kept them as long as 2 months. I generally make double the quantity I require and freeze half for a second use.
Ingredients for the green gravy:
Coriander leaves – 3 cups
Mint – 4 to 5 leaves
Ginger grated – 1/4tsp.
Green chilli – 1/2 or more if you like it spicy
Roasted dhana-jeera (Coriander-cumin) pdr – 1/2 tsp.
Amchoor – A pinch
Salt – to taste
Oil – 1/2 tsp./none at all
Water – 1 to 2 cups
Method for the gravy:
Chop the leaves roughly and grind along with ginger, mint, amchoor, salt and green chilli adding water as required till it comes to a smooth chutney consistency.
Heat the oil if you are using it and splutter 1/2tsp. jeera. I sometimes just heat the gravy without the oil, and it works well enough, but adding oil brings out the flavour of the jeera.
Add the ground mixture and cook till the aromas exude. Add water to get a thin soupy consistency. Just before removing from fire add the roasted dhana-jeera powder, and mix well. Taste and increase spices to suit your palate (I love things mild).
Now add the cut guttes and cook for another 2 minutes.
Serving: Serve with rotis, rajgira rotis or hot rice.
Vegan version for the dumplings with step by step method: HERE
Notes from experience:
The gattes tend to absorb the gravy which is why it should be a thin otherwise you will be left with a thick mass of gatte and no gravy, and that not only looks horrible but also tastes dry!
If your gattes are not stiff they will absorb more gravy.
The gravy should remain bright green. Do not over cook till the colour changes as the fresh flavour gets lost! The gravy making should not take more than 5minutes.
This subzi tastes better after the gravy is absorbed a little so it should be made an hour ahead of serving time and warmed at the time of serving.