పచ్చి పెసర పచ్చడి: Pacchi Pesara Pacchadi- Split green gram chutney

Serves: Five. Preparation time: 5 minutes. But soaking takes 1 hour. 



Ingredients:
1 Cup Yellow (split and dehusked) Green gram dal (Dhuli moong dal, Pesara pappu)
4 Dry Red Chillies
1 Tsp Salt
1 level Tsp Cumin seeds
2 pinches Asafoetida
1 Tsp Lemon juice

Method:
1. Soak the Pesara pappu in water for one hour. Add enough water to immerse the pulse. 
2. Grinding: Grind the soaked Pesara pappu, Salt, red chillies, cumin seeds and Asafoetida into a smooth paste. Do not add water, the moisture from within the soaked pulses is enough. 
3. Squeeze 1 Tsp juice of Lemon over it and mix in properly. 


Precautions:
1. Lemon juice turns bitter if squeezed and left exposed. Hence, squeeze the lemon fresh over the Pacchadi.
2. Adjust salt and red chilli to taste.

Culture & Health:
This very-easy-to-prepare pacchadi is made fresh in small batches just for immediate consumption. It is rich in protein, has no oil at all, very good for health. The fresh lemon squeezed over it provides vitamins and phytochemicals. Can be prepared in a jiffy if you have the soaked pulse ready. It doesn’t use the stove/heating at all, all ingredients are raw, hence the name “Pacchi pesara pacchadi“.
A close cousin of this pacchadi is ‘Vada pappu‘ (whole soaked pesara pappu with salt, red chilli) which is usually served as a prashadam especially on Rama Navami.

Variations:

Dry roast the Pesara pappu instead of soaking it. Also dry roast the red chillies & Cumin seeds and grind with salt, asafoetida & water, the recipe is similar to Kandi pacchadi. It can be eaten plain as ‘Pesara pacchadi‘. Alternatively, add roasted Eggplant to this to make Vankaaya-Pesara Pacchadi.

Trivia:
This Pacchi pesara pacchadi recipe is courtesy Manju pinni, it is a regular item on the Chivukula family menu.

అరటి పెసల కూర: Arati Pesalu Kura: Plantain with Mung bean

Serving for 2 persons

INGREDIENTS:

Raw Banana ………1 big
Little oil………………
Green Gram dal…….1/4 cup
Red Chilly……………………2
Black Gram dal………………1 tsp.
Mustard………………………..1 tsp
Cumin seeds…………………..1 tsp.
salt for taste

Method:

1.Peel Banana and cut into small pieces.
2.Soak Green gram dal in little water.
3.Keep sauce pan on heat, put oil.
4. When it is hot, add chilly pieces, black gram dal, mustard, cumin seeds.
5.The seeds start fluttering, add the cut banana.
6.Put salt, turmeric,and sprinkle little water then close the lid.
7.When the veg. is soft, add the soaked dal.
8.Keep it for some time to cook and put off the stove.
9. Now the banana kura is ready to eat.

.It is tasty when eaten hot and with hot rice adding ghee.

చట్ని పొడి / Chutney podi/ Chutney powder



Ingredients
chanadal/senagapappu 2cups (rice cooker measure cup)
uraddal/minapappu 11/2 tbsp
Tamarind 1 small marble size or 1/2tbsp Amchur

Thiragamatha
Daniyalu/coriander seeds 2tbsp
Avalu/ mustard seeds 1tsp
Red chillys 15
dry coconut powder 11/2 cups
Heeng 1tsp
sugar or jaggery 1tsp
salt for taste

Preparation
Dry roast chanadal and uraddal separately. Let it cool.
Heat one tbsp oil in a pan and add mustard seeds, then chillys and then coriander seeds
Roast them until brown and add heeng and turn off heat.
Now add coconut powder and stir it.
Grind dals first and keep aside.
Grind the rest of the ingredients along with salt and tamarind
Add ground dals to this mixture and mix well.

This powder goes with all alpaharams/snacks and rice also.

తోటకూర కాడల పులుసు: Totakura Kadala Pulusu- Amaranth Stalk soup

 Serves: Four. Preparation time: 30 minutes 


Ingredients:

1 bunch Totakura/ Cholai/ Amaranth greens
1 Tsp or to taste, Salt
1 Tsp or to taste, Sugar
1 Tbsp Tamarind paste
2 Tsp Putnala pappu podi (Roasted chickpea powder)
Green chillies to taste
1 sprig Cilantro

Tempering:
1 Tbsp Oil
1/2 Tsp Mustard seeds
1/2 Tsp Cumin seeds
2 Tsp Coriander powder
1 Tsp Fenugreek powder
2 Tsp Red Chilli powder
1/2 Tsp Asafoetida
4 Curry leaves

Method:
1. Remove leaves from the Totakura stalks, they can be used to make Totakura pappu. Wash the stalks thoroughly in cold running water and pat dry. Discard any mature fibrous stalks, use tender juicy stalks. Chop stalks into 1″ pieces. 

2. Boil stalks immersed in 1″ water until they soften, they will be half done in around 7 minutes, cover the boiling pot with a lid.
3. Stir in the salt, sugar and tamarind juice. Boil until the stalks are fully cooked and tamarind juice cooks too, around 5 more minutes of covered cooking.



4. In a bowl, make a runny sauce from the putnala pappu podi by adding 2 Tbsp of cold water, making sure to break up any lumps.

5. Pour the chickpea powder sauce into the Kadalu pulusu while stirring gradually. Let it boil for a minute so the chickpea sauce mixes into the soup, it doesn’t need cooking time since it is prepared from roasted powder. 
6. Switch off the heat and add the green chillies and curry leaves. Cover and set aside. 
7. Tempering:
Heat the oil and add the Mustard seeds. When they splutter, add Cumin seeds, coriander powder, red chilli powder and asafoetida. Switch off the heat and add the fenugreek powder. Pour this tempering into the pulusu.
8. Garnish the pulusu with fine chopped cilantro.

Variations:
Instead of putnala pappu podi, you may add a mixture of 1 tsp Rice flour mixed into 2 tsp Besan (Chickpea flour) dissolved in 3 Tbsp water. However, the pulusu should be boiled for 5 minutes after adding besan/rice flour since they are raw & take time to cook. Alternatively, the besan/rice flour can be roasted along with the tempering as described in Bendakaya pulusu


Culture & Health:
Telugu cuisine is full of a variety of pulusus which are delicious accompaniments with rice, upma, mudda pappu, kandi pacchadi, etc.
I found this a very clever way of utilizing every part of the Totakura, including the stalks! The stalks are a rich source of fibre, and very yummy too. This pulusu is a medley of flavours: salt, sour, sweet, spicy, totally mouth watering.

Trivia:
This is my mother’s recipe. I clicked photographs of all her cooking while she was here, and you will soon notice that she made some interesting pulusus! Mommy is fond of tamarind/chilli based dishes, so pulusu is of top priority on her menu 😉 Those are her hands you see cooking in the pics 🙂

గొంగౌర కంది పప్పు: Gongoura Kandi pappu- Kenaf greens with pigeon peas

Serves: Four. Preparation time: 1 hour

Ingredients:
1.5 rice cooker cups- Kandi pappu/ Pigeon peas
1 large onion
1 bunch Gongoura /Kenaf greens
1 tsp or to taste Salt
1 tsp or to taste Sugar
4 Green chillies chopped

For Tempering:
1 Tbsp oil
1 tsp Mustard Seeds
1 Tsp Cumin Seeds
1/2 Tsp Asafoetida
1/2 Tsp Turmeric
4 Dry red chillies broken into pieces
1/2 tsp Fenugreek powder
4 Curry leaves chopped

Method:
1. Pluck leaves from the Gongoura and discard the stalks. Wash Gongoura leaves in cold running water and place in a colander to drain away excess water. 
2. Boil the pigeon peas into pappu and set aside. Follow the directions in Mudda pappu recipe but it can be a little runny with more water.
3. Meanwhile, fine chop the Gongoura leaves and set aside. Also chop the onion into small pieces. 



4.
 
Boil the chopped Gongoura leaves and onions immersed in 1″ water until they are tender, around 10 minutes, covered with a lid.




5. Mix in the salt, sugar and boiled kandi pappu into the cooked leaves-onions. 



6. Tempering:
Heat oil and add mustard seeds. When they crackle, add dry red chillies, jheera, turmeric, asafoetida, green chillies, curry leaves. Switch off the heat and add methi powder. Pour this tempering into the gongoura pappu.
Serve with hot rice with a generous topping of ghee.


Suggestions/Variations:
1. Instead of boiling the onions with the gongoura greens, fry them with green chillies and add into the gongoura pappu. Or add the onions into the tempering and fry together.
2. Gongoura leaf is sour so the the pappu doesn’t need any additional souring agent. Add some tamarind juice if you feel the need (believe me you won’t need it!). 



Culture & Health:
What comes to my mind when I think of Gongoura, are the lines from the Telugu movie Mayabazaar, which refer to it as Shakambari devi vara prasadamu, a gift from the goddess of vegetables! 🙂 I am sure most of us must have watched that movie, it is my most watched Telugu movie.
Gongura is very dear to Telugus, we make a pacchadi too with its leaves. It is related to the Hibiscus, Mandara puvvu, which is also very important in our culture. Plants of this family have a slimy/soapy feel in their crushed leaves, so women wash their hair with hibiscus leaf paste.
Gongoura is also called Kenaf, its scientific name is Hibiscus cannabinus, it is related to the Roselle. There are two varieties of gongoura in Andhra, one has creamy green stalks, one has red stalks. I used the red variety, it is even more sour than the green one.
Gongoura greens are very good for health, but some people are allergic to them.

Trivia:
This pappu prepared by mommy dearest, I photographed and documented the process. The lovely tulips you see in the photo- mommy papa brought them from Amsterdam for their Alludu‘s birthday, and mom insisted that I photograph her gongoura pappu against the backdrop of the flowers! 😀

తోటకూర పెసర పప్పు :Tota Kura pesara pappu- Amaranth greens with yellow moong

Serves: Four. Preparation time: 1 hour. 



Ingredients:
1.5 rice cooker cups Pesara pappu/ Dhuli moong/ Split yellow moong
1/2 Tsp Turmeric
1 bunch Totakura/ Cholai/ Amaranth greens
2 Tbsp Tamarind paste
1 Tsp Salt
1 Tsp Sugar
1 sprig Cilantro

For tempering:
1 Tbsp Oil
1 Tsp Avalu
1 Tsp Jheera
4 Dry red chillies broken into pieces
1/2 Tsp Heeng
4 Curry leaves
3 Green chillies chopped
1 Medium Onion chopped fine
1/2 Garlic clove, pounded

Method:

1. Remove the leaves from the Totakura and wash in cold running water, leave to drain in a colander. The stalks can be used to make Totakura kadalu pulusu
2. Boil pesara pappu until it is soft and add turmeric. (You may use the directions of Mudda pappu, but keep in mind that pesara pappu is softer & takes less time, so adjust the water/timing.) Set aside. 



3. Chop the Totakura by taking a clump of leaves and cutting into them lengthwise & breadthwise so that they are fine chopped. Also chop the onion. 

4. Boil the chopped Totakura in 1″ water until half done (approx. 7 minutes), add tamarind juice, salt and sugar, and boil again until fully done (approx. a further 7 minutes). 



5. Add the boiled pesara pappu into the boiled greens and thoroughly mix in.





6. Fry chopped onions & green chillies in a teaspoon of oil,  mix in the pounded garlic paste and fry until brown. Pour into the Totakura-pesara pappu.

7. Tempering:

Heat oil and add mustard seeds. When they splutter, add Jheera, dry red chilli pieces, Heeng and Curry leaves. 

8. Pour the tempering over the Totakura-pesara pappu



9. Let the tempering & fried onions rest over the pappu, mix in just before serving. You may also add some chopped Cilantro.



Serve with hot rice with a generous topping of ghee


Suggestions/Variations:
1. Pesara pappu is an easy-to-cook pappu which softens rapidly. Hence, if you want to preserve the texture of the grains without letting them get mashed, you may avoid pressure cooking, boil it in a pot of water. 
2. The onions & green chillies may be boiled along with the totakura without frying separately if you want to cut down on oil or cook quickly. 
3. Some people prefer to add some chopped tomatoes as souring agent along with tamarind. Or, slices of tomatoes can be arranged for garnishing. 
4. Traditional brahmans do not consume garlic/onions, they are optional ingredients. 

Culture & Health:
Totakura belongs to the Amaranth family, a species of hardy plants which grow rapidly. The plant is highly tolerant to weather conditions and can grow even in arid soil. A single flower head can contain upto half a million tiny beady seeds that are rich in protein and amino acids. Native south American tribes used to consume the flour from the seeds of this plant, so do some African peoples. In India, it is usually consumed as greens. The Amaranth is thought to be the crop of the future, the boon for poor countries since it can be quickly cheaply cultivated with its tremendous health benefits.
The greens are a rich source of vitamins and minerals. However, Amaranth is similar to spinach in that it has high oxalic acid content, and not advisable for those who suffer from gout/kidney disorders.
It is also not advisable to reheat amaranth greens since the chemicals in it undergo undesirable changes when reheated.
Totakura comes in two varieties: one with red stalks/leaves, one with creamy green stalks. The red variety that I used is more delicious & better for health than the green one.

Trivia:
This is my mother’s recipe, those are her hands chopping the greens, I was the honest photographer harassing her to pose properly!
Totakura has fond childhood memories for me, Tittu brought back seeds from her village fields, and we planted them in our backyard kitchen garden. I watched the flower beds every single day, watering them with care, waiting eagerly for the first shoots to sprout.. Then when the amaranth grew, we used to pluck the leaves fresh and make kura/pappu, I used to be so proud, that a vegetable I grew was feeding my family!! 😀 I could say totakura was my pet plant!!

బెండకాయ పులుసు: Bendakaya pulusu- Lady’s finger soup

Serves: Four. Preparation time: 30 minutes.


Ingredients:
1 lb Bendakaya/ Bhindi/ Okra/ Lady’s finger
2 Tbsp Tamarind paste
1 tsp Salt
1 Tsp Jaggery/ Brown Sugar
3 Green chillies chopped
1 sprig Cilantro

For tempering:
1 Tbsp Oil
1 Tsp Mustard Seeds
1 Tsp Cumin Seeds
4 Dry red chillies broken into pieces
2 Tsp Coriander powder
1 Tsp Red chilli powder
1/2 Tsp Heeng
1/2 Tsp Turmeric
1/2 Tsp Fenugreek powder
1 Tsp Rice flour
2 Tsp Besan
4 Curry leaves


Method:

1. Wash lady’s fingers in running water and pat dry. Chop into 1″ pieces. Boil lady’s finger immersed in 1″ water until they are half done, around 7 minutes. Pour in the tamarind paste, salt & sugar, and boil until fully cooked, around 7 minutes. Add the green chillies and cilantro. Set aside.


2. For tempering:
Heat oil and add mustard seeds. When they splutter, add Jheera, dry red chillies, turmeric, Heeng, Dhania powder, red chilli powder, Rice flour, Besan and curry leaves. Let it fry for a few seconds until the rice flour/besan are roasted and switch off flame. Mix in the Methi powder.

3. Pour the tempering into the okra soup.


Suggestions/Variations:
1. Adjust the salt, sugar, tamarind and chillies to taste depending on how mild/strong they are.
2. Rice flour- besan may be dissolved in 3 Tbsp water and added into the soup stew to boil instead of frying with the tempering.

Culture:
This is another addition to our list of pulusus. Pulusus are very versatile since they may be served with hot rice, paired with snacks such as Upma, eaten with Kandi pacchadi or Mudda pappu, or simply used to dip Idlis into!
It can be prepared in a jiffy when making small quantities and tastes heavenly.

Trivia:
This is my mother’s recipe, she made it for us while she was here, and it is a truly lip smacking preparation. Some claim that eating Bendakaya makes you sharp, while Dondakaya makes you dull. So enjoy this pulusu as it sharpens your mind 😉

సొరకాయ ఆవ పెట్టి కూర: Sorakaya ava petti kura: Bottle gourd with mustard


INGREDIENTS

1. Bottle Guard……………1.medium size
2.Tamarind………………….big lemon size soaked.
3.Mustard seeds………….2 tbl sp.soaked and made into paste with same water.
4.Jaggery…………………….small lemon size.
5.Turmeric……………………1/2 tsp.
6.Oil……………………………..2 tbsp.
7. Water……………………….2 cups.
8. Salt………………………….as per the taste.

Seasoning:

9.Red chillies ………………3 no.
10.Bengal gram dal………..1tbsp.
11.Black gram dal……………1 tbl sp
12.Mustard seeds for seasoning…1/12 tsp.
13.Cumin seeds……………………….1/12 tsp.
14. Asafoetida…………………………..1/4tsp

Method:

1. Soak mustard seeds in enough water.
2. Soak tamarind in water to get pulp.
3. Peel guard and cut into small cubes.
4.Heat oil in a pan and add seasoning after splitters then add guard pieces.
5. Add water and salt and keep the lid.
6.Grind soaked mustard into paste.
7. Take out pulp from soaked tamarind and keep aside.
8. When veg. cooked 3/4 add tamarind pulp and jaggery.
9. Cook until it is soft.
10. Add mustard paste and cook for two more minutes.
11. Garnish with cilantro and serve.

This item goes with rice and roti.

పాలకూర పులుసు: Palakura pulusu- Spinach stew

INGREDIENTS:

Spinach 1 bunch
Chanadal 1/3 cup
Tamarind big lemon size(soaked in water)
Green chillis 3 mediem size
Jaggary mediem size lemon
Salt as per taste
water to boil 2 rice cooker (meisure)
Turmeric 1/4 tsps

Seasoning:

Musterd seeds 1tsps
Jeera 1tsps
Red chillis 3

Method:
1. Wash and chop spinach.
2. Heat vessel add spinach and water.
3.Add chanadal and green chilli.
4.Add turmeric and salt and cook .
5.Take pure from soaked tamarind and add to the spinach when it is half cooked.
6.Add jaggary and chilli powder and cook them when it is done.
7. Heat oil in a pan add seasoning when it splitter add to the cooked spinach.

This item goes with rice and roti.

వంకాయ పచ్చి పులుసు :Vankaya pacchi pulusu- Eggplant Tamarind Stew


INGREDIENTS:

Eggplant 1( Big)
Tamarind big lemon size
Salt as per taste
Jaggary 1 table spoons (powdered)
Red chilys 8 to 10 (as per taste)
Celantro for garnishing
Seasoninig:

Oil 1 tbl sp.
mustard seeds 1 tsp
Heeng 1/4 tsp
Fenugreek seeds powder 1/2 tsp (dry roast and grind)

Preparation:

1. Peel eggplant and microvave for 5 to 8 minits or cook in a pan./(roast it directly on the flame using wire mesh).
2. Soak tamarind for 30 min and make thin puree and keep aside.
3. Heat small pan add little bit oil and fry red chillyis.
4.Take tamarind water in a bowel and add Fri.ed red chillies (mashed)
5. Add jaggary, salt to the tamarind water.
6. Add cooked and mashed eggplant to the mixture.
7. Heat oil in small pan add mustard seeds when it splutter add heeng and fenugreek powder.
8. Add to the mixture and mix well and garnish with cilantro and serve.

This can be eaten with rice or roti.

1.Variations..

Instead of egg plant, you can use onions.
1. cut onion into small pieces.
2. fry it in a little oil untill they get soft.
3. add this in the tamarind juice.
4. rest is as above.
(Refer to Ullipaya pacchi pulusu for detail).

2.Variation..

1.white pumpkin vadis can be fried and can mixed in the tamarind juice.
2. rest is as above.