I love Kripal Singh’s Food Lovers TV where he spotlights older, unique, out of the way establishments mostly in Bengaluru. One of these episodes featured The New Modern Hotel (not sure of the name) in Bengaluru, and their homestyle cooking and thaali. Now, if I must choose someone to eat on my behalf, if that ever happens, I would choose Kripal. The way he experiences the food and relates the experience, the way he enjoys it – he is the BEST! The food featured was South Canara cuisine, I think it’s coastal karnataka, satvik food, plenty of coconut, and jaggery, and just everything good! I fell in love with this episode, and the side dish of okra gojju that he used the pooris to dip in. Googled the recipe, and I came up with what I think is the dish featured. From my research, it’s very similar to the pagarkai gojju made with a unique masala paste made of sesame seeds and coconut, in addition to the dals and red chilies. I had to make it immediately. Like the same evening. But I waited to serve it with with the pooris, along with a hodge podge thaali I made up with various leftovers, as I was craving a Woodlands style thaali. Here is the recipe!
This is a basic, beginner recipe. No frills, no fancy, just a simple dal. Only, you don’t need 2 pots – one to cook the dal in, one to add the seasonings. It’s all one pot, turn it on, set the timer and forget it. When done, add tempering, and salt. Total comfort food, ready in about 25 mins (including pressure release time).
A super simple side dish. Sometimes, you have a lot of vegetables – a couple of potatoes, a carrot, some peas, half a cauliflower, but none enough to make a side dish. This is a perfect curry to use up all of those, and make a great curry that’s perfect as a side dish for rotis. This is a great lunch box item, a quick breakfast dish, or an excellent vegetable to go along with a dal, and some rice or rotis.
This recipe is from Allison, who has been dating my son for about 31/2 years now. Allison is vegan, and a big fan of cooking and eating Indian food. She can polish off a big bag of bhel mix all by herself. This was one of the first recipes she made with/for my son, and has also made for us one Thanksgiving.
Kovakai (ivy gourd in English, tindora in Hindi) is a 2-3 inch cucumber like vegetable, but sturdier and makes a great stirfry vegetable. Pairs well with any rice dish (rasam/sambar/yogurt or just plain white rice). My kids’ favorite. More ocmmonly available in Indian grocery stores, makes a much-requested appearance in my kitchen whenver kids come home. It can be cut lengthwise or in circles. My kids love it in circles and that’s how I always make it.
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