I see red
With the price of tomatoes skyrocketing, chefs list ways to reinvent popular dishes with alternate souring agents
Our kitchens might be stuffed with groceries, but some items have been constants. Among them are tomatoes, an integral part of most Indian dishes, starting from salad to main-course. However, given the price rise—R80 a kg—it might just be time to reconsider its usage. Mumbai's chefs share their secret to recipes of tomato-centric dishes, without it.
Seema Pratap, head chef and owner of Dadar's MRP helps us curate the most loved North Indian dish, kadhai paneer using beetroot and pumpkins.
Paneer 250 gm, 1 medium sized onion chopped, 1 medium sized onion diced into cubes, 1 capsicum diced into cubes, 2 tsp oil, 1 green chilli chopped, 1 tsp ginger garlic paste, 1 tsp cashew paste, 1 bay leaf, 100 gm red pumpkin boiled with 1 tsp pureed beet root, salt to taste, 1/4 tsp red chilli powder, 1/4 tsp garam masala, 1 whole red chilli
Heat oil in a kadhai.
Add ginger garlic paste, saute for a minute and add chopped onions. Cook for few mins, add capsicum and onion cubes. Add green chillies, pumpkin puree and dry masala. Cook till oil separates. Add paneer cook for three mins. Garnish with coriander and cream. Serve hot.
Chef Dharmesh Kamraokar, co-founder and culinary director at Luciferous Ventures, brings in a new way to have the mutton special, Gongura maans, without using tomatoes. "Tomato was never an Indian fruit. It was brought in by the Greeks. Now, of course, it is a regular ingredient but we can definitely have our dishes without using it as an ingredient," he says.
Mutton 200 gm, Gongura leaves 50 gm, pumpkin 130 gm, garlic 15 gm, ghee 75 gm, salt to taste, coconut milk 120 ml, coriander leaves, curry leaves, black pepper whole 10 gm, cinnamon 15 gm, whole cumin 20 gm, butter 15 gm, tamarind water 30 ml, green cardamom 10gm, onions 150 gm.
Heat oil, add cinnamon, cardamom, pepper corns, chopped onions and saute till brown. Add curry leaves, green chillies. and add garlic. Then add the mutton pieces. Stir till it is well seared. Add water and bring to a boil. Pressure cook it for two whistles. Separately saute the gongura leaves and cook. Add pumkin and fry. Add the cooked mutton and mix well with the cooked gongura leaves. Add ghee and garnish with corriander leaves.
A Sindhi dish which is known for its tangy flavour is reinvented by chef Mitesh Rangras, corporate chef at Derby, in a way that the tanginess is intact and your pocket, safe.
Gram flour 15 gm, mustard seeds ½ tsp, fenugreek seeds ¼ tsp, cumin seeds 1 tsp, curry leaves up to 12, tamarind pulp 15 gm, green chillies chopped 3, red chili powder 1/2 tsp, turmeric powder ¼ tsp, salt to taste, oil 30 ml, potatoes 1 large, cauliflower 200 gm, cluster beans 100 gm, drumstick 1, baby aubergine 5, ladies finger 6 pieces.
Heat oil in a cooker, add curry leaves, cumin seeds, mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds. Add gram flour and stir for 4 minutes, making sure it doesn't stick to the base.
You can add a cup of water to this. Add red chili powder, green chillies, turmeric and salt and mix thoroughly. Close the cooker for 5 to 7 minutes and cook
(one whistle should suffice). Add vegetables, except ladies finger and stir. Mix it with 1 litre water. Cook for 10 minutes. By now, the vegetables should have softened. Add the tamarind pulp at and cook for a couple of minutes. Add okra and cook for two more minutes. Serve.
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