Saturday 6 September 2014

Bhendi Masala (Maharashtrian style)

There are so many different ways of making Bhendi masala, but the one i love most (obviously!) is the one that is made back home in Maharashtra. Spicy, tangy, crunchy, chewy, this dish has all flavours blended in one. Bhendi or Bhindi or Okra as it is called, tastes best when it's stuffed. And there are many versions of making the stuffing. Some make it with onions and spices, some add grated fresh coconut, some add peanut powder, and some with only spices. But the main ingredients in making this aromatic recipe Maharashtrian style is the sesame seeds and the goda masala. I feel it really transforms the dish into something else and gives it a distinct taste.

Making this vegetable requires a little more oil, but it helps prevent "bhendi" from being soggy. Hubby dearest loves this version, and the first time i made it, he called me from office just to tell me how tasty it was. So, be assured that if you make this version, you are going to get loads of pats on your back :) And the best part- It's super easy to make :)


Bhendi/Bhindi/Okra/Lady's finger - 1/4 kg
Onion - 1 (cut lengthwise)
Oil - for deep frying
Oil - 2 tbsp
Sesame seeds - 1 tbsp
Roasted Peanut powder - 4 tsp
Chilli powder - 1 tsp
Turmeric - 1/4 tsp
Corriander powder - 1 tsp
Garam masala - 1/2 tsp
Goda masala - 1 tsp
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Amchur powder - 1/2 tsp
Salt - to taste
Sugar - just sprinkle on top ( about 1/2 tsp)
Corriander leaves - 1/4 cup
Cashewnuts - 4-5 halved (This is optional, just to make the dish rich. At home, we don't add cashewnuts, but i took this idea from the famous WahChef)

Recipe :

Wash the bhendi properly and pat dry. It is very important to dry them properly, as if they remain moist, they will be sticky and soggy when you deep fry them.

Remove the end portions from both sides, and slit them vertically from one side keeping the other side intact.

Heat oil in a kadhai. When the oil is hot enough, fry the onions and remove them just when they start turning brown. Keep aside.

To the same oil, add cashews and fry till they get a nice golden colour. Keep aside.

Now add the Bhendi to this oil, and deep fry them till they are crisp. You will know when they start browning that they are done. Remove and keep aside. 

I purposely didn't drain the oil from all the 3 deep fried items as it helps coat the masala properly when they ooze out oil.

Now in a pan/kadhai, add 2 tbsp oil. Add cumin seeds and then sesame seeds. When they splutter, switch off the gas.

Now add the peanut powder, and mix it well. Then add all the dry spices like chilli powder, turmeric powder, corriander powder, amchur powder, salt, sugar, garam masala and goda masala. Give it a nice mix. Lastly add the corriander leaves and then the onions, cashews and bhendi.

Do not cover the pan. The masala will coat automatically to the bhendi when you mix it. Also please note : Add all the spices after switching off the flame.

Now that really looks tempting, doesn't it?

Happy Cooking :)

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