Undhiyu inspired sabzi

I have great love for the Gujarati Undhiyu. It can sway my vote away from chaat as I wrote in my post about our Atlanta trip. I have an even greater love for "Matla Undhiyo" which is like a cross between chaat and undhiyo. That is more about the entire experience. Ideally, in a farm outdoors on a winter afternoon. The fresh papdi and tuvar beans are cooked in an earthen pot (aka Matlo in gujarati). It is an elaborate setting of digging a hole, adding coal, covering the mouth of the pot with straw and then cooking the beans and the root vegetables. The vegetables are served right out of the pot and the diner has to peel the beans, mash the vegetables themselves, add the different and unique chutneys, oil (probably sesame oil), sev and eat like a chaat. Jalebi on the side is kind of mandatory :)
That is probably my favorite childhood food memory. Mostly because of the inherent party like atmosphere of lots of people eating on a farm, using their hands, customizing it and partly because it is not everyday you get to eat this.

The undiyo that most people know about is the other kind of undhiyo : cooked like a sabzi and eaten with roti. Even this kind of undhiyo is not an everyday thing because this is quite elaborate too. You need a dozen different vegetables, make the green masala, stuff the baby vegetables, make the muthiyas and then bring everything together as one dish.

I am not the one for elaborate cooking. In this case, specially because the husband wont eat the "real" Undhiyo as it has eggplants and weird vegetables (according to him) in it. So I take the easy middle path - I make a sabzi with all the flavors of the undhiyo without all the elaborate effort and offending vegetables. It satisfies my craving for undhiyo without all the effort and the husband really loves it too. I do have to thank my mom for the basic idea. She always makes papdi along these lines.

On this occasion, I had leftover methi muthiyas from the previous day. I may or may not have saved them with the intention of adding them in this undhiyo inspired sabzi. ;)

Undhiyo inspired sabzi

1 lb surti papdi
2 small potatoes
2 small carrots
1/2 bell pepper
1 tomato
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/8 tsp asafoetida (hing)
1/2 tsp ajwain (carom seeds)
1 tbsp sesame seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp chilli powder
1 tbsp minced garlic cloves
1 tbsp minced ginger
1 tbsp jaggery
1 tsp dhaniya-jeera powder
1 tsp undhiyo masala or gujarati garam masala
1 tbsp coconut powder (dessicated coconut)
1 tbsp peanut powder
8 methi muthiyas (optional)
  • String the Surti papdi. Remove the seeds and keep some tender skin aside.
  • Heat one and half tablespoon of oil and add mustard seeds, hing, ajwain, sesame seeds, turmeric and red chilli powders. Add the minced ginger and garlic.
  • Immediately add the potatoes and carrots. Saute and cover for 2 minutes.
  • Add the papdi seeds. Cover and cook for 5 minutes. Add the papdi skin and cook for 5 more minutes.
  • How colorful does this look?
  • Add the bell pepper and tomatoes. Add 1 tsp salt or to taste, jaggery, dhaniya-jeera powder and undhiyo masala. Mix, cover and cook for about 5 minutes. The vegetables should be more than half cooked by now.
  • Add 1 cup of water. Cover and bring to a boil.
  • Add the muthiyas, coconut powder and peanut powder. Cover and let it sit for about 5 minutes on low heat.
  • Serve with rotis.
The vegetables used can be varied. I made this another time when I did not make muthiyas and used some different vegetables.
I used tuvar seeds, sweet potato, a tiny bit of beet and some spinach (methi would work wonderfully too) along with the usual potato and tomato. As long as you have tuvar, papdi or both and some root vegetables, it can be an undhiyo inspired sabzi. When using sweet potatoes, you will not need as much jaggery due to the sweetness of sweet potatoes.
I have to say, the version with the muthiyas was takes it to the next level but the one without muthiyas was still quite tasty.


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