Every recipe I ever find anywhere, I have to adapt it according to our household. We eat minimal amounts of salt and little to no chilli/ spice in our food. Before I got married I used to eat raw green chillies with my meal. Now, even a little spice sends me to the cleaners. F has wrecked me and now he can officially eat spicier food than I can. Go figure
Despite his routine “but I want McDonald’s” range of hue and cry, I am able to sneak into the kitchen more often this Ramzan than I have in the past decade. (Also because we don’t have any house help for almost three months. Or more. I don’t remember. I started losing sight a month into it. So I’m officially running two brands Ánesi and Dotte, raising a one year old, cleaning, mopping and of course cooking whenever I can coerce F into it!)
He won’t even touch vegetables (tarkaari on its own) and since I made this, he has been sinking a spoon into it and stealing some every now and then. Happily polished off my 1year old’s leftover Zucchini and rice bowl too.
This recipe has the baseline of something a lovely person named Samia Qurni shared on KCH. I took her basic recipe but then went a little mad with my spice box.
Yeah I have a tendency to do that. Result? Gorgeous Sabzi. I’m not complaining.
Thank you Samia !!
I also tend to become lazy.
So you will see thick cut onions and easy-to-prep ingredients in my recipes more often than the next person’s.
I love to cook but I love Sassi too and can’t bear to be away from her. Yeah, I still am not able to muster up enough courage to hand her to anyone else except her dad to care for her.
Also because it’s so hot.
Also because I will find easier ways to do everything right. So I won’t do packet masalas but I will grind my own masalas or make pastes and store for a quick meal prep.
I digress. I give you…
Zucchini Tarkaari !
3 large Onion – thickly sliced (see, see, wink wink!)
4-5 Tomatoes- cubed
Ghee or olive oil- 0.5-1 cup
Kalonji (Nigella seeds)- 0.5 tsp
turmeric – 0.5 tsp
Coriander Powder- 0.5 tsp
Mace powder- a pinch
Garlic ginger paste- 1.5- 2 tbsp
Red chilli- 0.5 tsp (we are floozies, you can add more)
Salt to taste
To the Thick onions in a pot of your choice , add ghee (clarified butter) or olive oil and make it go translucent.
Then add Kalonji, Turmeric, Garlic Ginger Paste, red chilli and salt and fry it a little making sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan. Add tomatoes and break them down using your cooking spoon or sturdy spatula
Then add the thickly cut Zucchini and mix a few times for the Masala to coat it well. Then cover it and let it cook on medium heat. Keep checking for it to reduce to an almost mushy state and when it does slightly fry it until the water appearing separately mostly disappears and oil surfaces. Add chopped Fresh coriander and cook covered on low heat for a few minutes so it hugs the Zucchini Tarkaari and the Zucchini tarkaari hugs it back.
Zucchini Tarkaari without spice.
Well. Hardly any.
Then of course my favourite food ever. Karahi. Simple, fresh looking and adapted to a without green chilli version yet still beating that freshness. There’s absolutely nothing in there to qualify as a recipe or even something different or new. It’s nice and fresh and VERY simple.
Without further ado, I give you
Mutton Karahi (without spice but not without flavour!)
1kg Mutton Qorma cut
Olive oil – 0.5 cup
2tbsp Ginger Garlic paste
1 kg tomatoes
Ghee (clarified butter) 1 tblsp
Chilli Flakes 0.5 tsp (Promise you can add more. Please do. We are just, who we are. You don’t have to suffer)
Salt 1 tsp or to taste
Half bundle of Fresh Coriander
Two large-ish pieces of Ginger cut like matchsticks.
You can add whole/ slitted/ finely sliced (depending on the heat you want!) green chilli if you want, when you add tomatoes. Maybe some at the end to garnish.
Add meat to oil and as soon as it changes colour, add Ginger Garlic paste. Cook it a little till the GG stops looking watery and separate.
Add the tomatoes (and green chillies if you’re the fun type) with the salt and close the lid for a bit. Really just 3 minutes. Then open and mash the tomatoes slightly. There should be a lot of water by now. Add chilli flakes, mix a bit and cook till oil surfaces. Now add two cups of water and leave it covered on low heat to cook. Once the meat is tender, add half the chopped ginger and fresh coriander and let it cook for another 20 minutes (adjust water if need be).
Then switch the stove off and garnish with leftover coriander, (green chillies if that’s how your heart sings) and ginger slivers.
There you go.
Served these with plain Sabit Masur ki daal (more popularly known as Kaali Daal, Jummay vaali daal, dark brown masur, kharaa masar.)
& Simple boiled rice.
You can add roti (unleavened bread/ chapati) to the mix too.
I was too tired and just wanted to hug Sass.