Monday, September 28, 2015

Saoji mutton

Nagpur and Vidarbha has its own culinary treats. Nagpur itself has its own specialty cuisine like  “Saoji”. Nagpurians are known for their love for spicy food which is prominently evident in popularity of Saoji Food.  Saoji Mutton is cooked in a delicious gravy of dry coconut and whole garam masalas roasted and ground. The key ingredient in this recipe is " Saoji spice powder",which gives very robust flavour to this dish.

“Saoji spice power/garam masala powder” recipe is consisting of varieties of garam masala which enhance the taste of this mutton curry. This is one of best garam masala powder recipe which has best combination of Indian spices. Additionally dry coconut used while cooking brings extra thickness to mutton gravy. This recipe is also famous  because of its spicy flavor and aroma.The recipe may seem long, but is incredibly easy to make. Just make sure you have all the ingredients ready.This curry  powder can even be made a week in advance and stored in air-tight bottles.

  1. 1 kg -Mutton,  (Cut that into small pieces of 1 inch with bone)
  2. 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  3. Salt to taste
  4. 2tsp Lemon Juice
  5.  Saoji Garam Masala powder
  6. Brown onion paste*
  7. 3 tomatoes ,chopped
  8. 2tbsp+2tbsp  Ginger Garlic paste
  9. 1tsp byadgi chilli powder
  10. 1/2 cup Coriander leaves chopped
Saoji Garam Masala powder*:
  1. Oil- 3 tablespoons
  2. Dry coconut- 1/2 cup ,grated
  3. Black cardamoms- 1
  4. Green cardamoms- 10
  5. Coriander seeds- 4tsp
  6. Shahi jeera- 1teaspoon
  7. Cumin-1tsp
  8. Cloves- 12
  9. Black pepper- 1tsp
  10. Cinnamon- 4 pieces of 1 inch each
  11. Bay leaves- 2
  12. Dry byadgi red chilies-10-12
  13. Khuskhus (poppy seeds) 2 tsp
  14. Stone flower (Dagad phool)- 2 tsp
  15. Mace-1 small
  16. Salt- 3tsp
Method for the saoji masala powder*
Heat oil in a shallow/heavy bottomed pan,add all the ingredient.Roast till copra turns to dark golden brown colour. Make sure to roast on very low flame to prevent burning of the spices.

Method of making brown onion paste:
Slice 3 onions and deep fry in oil till it changes to golden brown colour and drain the excess oil from onions and grind to a paste by adding little amount of water.

Method for the main curry:

  1. Marinate the pieces of mutton with lemon and turmeric powder for about 3-4 hours
  2. Now take pressure cooker add marinated muttton pieces and saute them on high gas till pieces get light brown.
  3. Then add paste of ginger garlic and fried onions and mix well with the mutton pieces.
  4. Once these pieces gets fried with both the paste add 1/2 of the Saoji masala powder * which is made earlier.
  5. Add salt as per taste and 3-4 cups water and mix well and then cover the cooker with a lid.
  6. Cook this mutton in pressure cooker till three- four whistles depending on the tenderness .
  7. Meantime prepare one more masala paste by adding remaining Saoji masala powder,1/2 of the coriander leaves and tomatoes and grind it to smooth paste.
  8. Take a pan add some oil and saute this ground masala paste and add 2tbsp ginger garlic paste and 1tsp chilly powder and saute till oil comes on top.
  9. Now add the cooked mutton pieces and bring it boil,check the seasoning and cook for about 10 minutes on medium flame
  10. Serve this mutton with bread/ pav or rice bhakri

Capsicum- Rava Bhath

Rava bhath is a popular breakfast made in most of the Indian houses known for its delicious taste and quick cooking process. This dish is very similar to the basis upma with an additional ingredient added .Normally a basic upma dish does not have any other veggies in it but as capsicum is added to this dish hence the name Capsicum bhath. Preparing a basic upma or capsicum bhath hardly takes about 10 minutes hence this is popularly cooked for breakfast or served during marriage functions or get-togethers as this dish is fast and easy to cook. Caspsicum  bhath made with Bombay rava or Bansi rava is served with either peanut chutney or coconut chutney,but i like to relish it plain.
Generally there are many versions of preparing the Capsicum Bhath. It can be made with rice, onions, tomatoes and other spices or with broken wheat cooked in the same way like basic upma combined with capsicum, tomato pieces, green chillies and curry leaves. This recipe of tomato bhath with semolina is prepared with upma rava or Bansi rava, green chillies, onions, tomato, garam masala (optional) and fresh curry  leaves and coriander leaves. You can also add fresh chopped veggies like potato, carrot or green peas to make it nutritious and healthy. Kids would love to eat it as it would look colorful too.
  1. 1 cup  Bansi rava/Kesari Rava
  2. 3 cups of Water
  3. 2 Big Green Capsicum
  4. 1 Small Tomato
  5. 1 medium Onion
  6. 4Tbsp Ghee
  7. 1/2tsp Garam Masala (optional)
  8. 1/2tsp Mustard seeds
  9. 1/4 tsp Cumin seeds
  10. 1tsp Urad dal
  11. 1/2tsp Chana dal
  12. 5-6 Green chillies,slit
  13. Few curry leaves
  14. Coriander leaves for garnishing

  • First keep a thick bottom pan on the stove and add the ghee.and put mustard seeds,cumin seeds,urad dal, chana dal and curry leaves for Tampering. 
  • After they get fried add chopped onions and green chillis, saute for 2 minutes then add chopped tomatoes and Capsicum. 
  • Saute them for 2-3 minutes ,then add salt and 3 cups of water and let it boil.
  •  When water starts boiling, add the bansi rava or semolina and keep stirring continuously till it is almost cooked.
  • Cover it with a lid and cook on low flame for about 2 mintues.
  •  Then switch off the stove and add coriander leaves .Serve hot.