TOGARI KAALU BHAAJI PALYA
Every season Togari kaalu ( Pigeon Peas ) never fails to bring with it the nostalgic memories of my childhood. As children we siblings plucked, peeled and munched on the togari kaalu as we monkeyed around in our garden.
I love to cook this kaalu in as many dishes as possible as long as the season lasts.
Here is a recipe of a simple dish known as Bhaaji Palya using Togari kaalu ( Pigeon Peas ) and Dantina soppu ( Amaranth).
Togari kaalu ( Pigeon peas ) - 2 cups
Tur dal - 1/2 cup
PREPARE by washing and pressure cooking the kaalu and dal together with turmeric powder adding 1 cup of water. Keep aside.
PREPARE by washing and chopping the amaranth along with the tender stems and keep aside. Cook the chopped amaranth adding a pinch of salt in a heavy bottomed pan without adding water. Cover and cook on low flame so that the amaranth cooks in its own juice. Once it is cooked remove lid and cook on high flame so that the excess liquid evaporates. Use the back of a ladle and mash the cooked amaranth and keep aside.
SPICY CHILLY PASTE
Green chillies - 2
Garlic pearls - 2
Fresh ginger peeled and chopped - 2 tbsps
Coriander leaves chopped - 4 tbsps
Tamarind softened by soaking in very little warm water - one small marble size
PREPARE a paste by grinding all of these ingredients together and keep aside.
Salt - 1 1/2 tsps
Oil - 2 tbsps
Mustard seeds - 1 pinch
Cumin seeds - 1 pinch
Broken red chillies - 2
Asafoetida - 1 pinch
Finely chopped onions - 4 tbsps
Curry leaves - a few
1. Heat the oil in a pan and add mustard seeds.
2. When the mustard seeds splutter add the cumin seeds, broken red chillies. curry leaves and asafoetida.
3. Reduce flame and add chopped onion and saute till it becomes transparent .
4. Add the ground chilly paste and saute till it gives out a very pleasant aroma.
5. Stir in the mashed amaranth.
6. Use the back of the ladle and gently mash the cooked dal and pigeon peas mixture. Only the dal should become mushy.The cooked pigeon peas can remain as they are. Add this mixture to the seasoned amaranth.
7. Add salt and cook till all the ingredients blend well. If the bhaaji is too dry add very little water to enable uniform blending of all the ingredients. The consistency of Bhaaji Palya should be in between the consistency of a dry curry and a thick gravy.
Switch off flame and enjoy the delicious Togarikaalu Bhaaji Palya with chapaties.