Sunday, March 15, 2009

Instant Gongura Pachadi

There is a popular dialogue from the Telugu classic Mayabazar referring to gongura as “Sakhambaridevi prasadam”, and why not? After aavakaaya, gongura pachadi is the most savoured chutney in Andhra households.

Gongura is a leafy vegetable like spinach and mint leaves. It is an average sized leaf with zigzag ends. The leaf has a completely different and slightly pungent and tangy taste when bit as it is. Gongura like spinach, mint and methi are sold in bunches in the markets. It is easy to spot gongura because of the distinctions mentioned above (as is evident from the pic). Gongura is also called puntikura in Telangana areas of Andhra Pradesh. Gongura is called Sorrel leaves in English, Ambada in Hindi, Pulichikeerai in Tamizh and Pundi Soppu in Kannada.
Instant gongura pachadi is named so because it can be stored for not more than a week. It is not like the conventional gongura pachadi that can be stored for months together.
Preparation time 20-25 mins

Sorrel leaves (Gongura) 1 bunch
Green chillies 5
Refined cooking oil 6-7 tsp
Red chillies 2
Mustard seeds ½ tsp
Fenugreek seeds ½ tsp
Pinch of Asafoetida
Salt to taste
Wash and pluck the gongura. Slit the green chillies (if more spice is required, more than 5 green chillies can be used)
Now in a kadai take 4 tsps of oil and add the gongura and green chillies and sauté till the gongura becomes a small lump and changes colur into pinkish brown. As the gongura is just leaves it will leave out a lot of water and the whole big bunch of leaves will just form a small lump. It is advisable to sauté on simmer.
Leave the gongura and green chillies to cool.
Once cool grind the gongura, green chillies, salt to taste (ideally a pinch for a bunch of gongura). Grind into a fine paste.
Now in a kadai/pan add 2 tsps of oil. Once hot add ½ tsp mustard seeds and once they splutter add red chillies and fenugreek seeds. Also add a pinch of asafoetida or hing. Now add the gongura paste. Please keep the stove on simmer. Now mix the chutney well to absorb the oil and tempering and switch the stove off.
Leave the chutney to cool and then transfer into an air tight container and keep it in the fridge.
Since the chutney is instant, it shall last only for around a week and not long like the conventional gongura pachadi. This is because the gongura is not dried before use and green chillies are used and not red chillies like in the traditionally made gongura pachadi.
Gongura pachadi can be had with bread or any of the Indian breads and rice. The right way to enjoy gongura pachadi is however to mix gongura pachadi with rice a tsp of oil and munch an onion with the gongura rice. The pungent onions and tangy, spicy gongura will give the tongue complete entertainment.

As Dr. C. Narayanreddy (Cinare), a popular contemporary telugu poet had once written, "Panchabhakshya paramannalu unna gongura kosamai gutakalesevadu- evarayya vaadu? Inkevarayya telugu vaadu". Gongura pachadi is indeed the route to every Telugu's heart.


Anonymous said...

gongura naaki, ullipaaya koriki, annam thintunte abbabbabbo!!! what a combo!!! :)

Shastry said...

The gongura pachadi is realy good.

Pratnee said...

Thank you Amusing Hoink and Thank you Shastry:)

Dragonfly said...

The dishes all look very good. I will give them a try. Thanks

Pratnee said...

Thank you Dragonfly:)

devils advocate said...

wow i was searchin for this... but naku gongura ekkaada dorukuthadhi abba eppudu

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