SEEKING LORD GANESH’S BLESSINGS THIS CHOVOTH…

With the recipes of Hindu Goa

ANOTHER Chovoth is here and coronavirus or no coronavirus most folk will be celebrating and invoking Hindu religious folklore’s favorite god — the elephant-headed Lord Ganesh — seeking blessings with puja, bhajan and mithai! Here some of our favorite recipes for the season of Chovoth (sometimes Chavath)…make one or all of them for a meal fit for Ganpati Bappa, family, friends and whomsoever you wish!

Ukadiche Modak

Ukadiche Modak
(Steamed rice flour potli dumplings packed with a filling of cardamom-spiked fresh grated coconut and palm jaggery choon.)
Ingredients
For the modak wrap: You will need a cup of rice flour, a cup of water (or more) water, 2 tsp pure ghee, pinch salt.
For the filling: You will need one and half cup freshly grated coconut, one cup grated jaggery, pinch salt, a tsp pure ghee and half tsp cardamom powder.
Method
Make the filling first. Combine scraped coconut and jaggery in a pan and slow cook, stirring, over low flame for a minute or two till you get a light gold mass. Stir in pinch salt and cardamom powder. Remove and cool.
Now put cup of water to boil in a pan and when it brews add in bit pure ghee, pinch salt, stir and sprinkle in the rice flour spoon by spoon deftly, stirring so that a soft steaming mass forms. Remove from fire and while still fairly hot rub into a smooth rice flour dough.
Take out walnut size portions and pat out into puri on palm of hand, put dollop of coconut-jaggery choon at center and bring together edges to flute in potli shape. When all the modak are done steam them till translucently steam cooked.
Remove and serve dabbed with pure ghee while hot or cooled at room temperature. Steamed modak are meant for savoring and relishing the very same day. Don’t keep well even in the fridge.
Steamed rice modak are a painstakingly learned culinary art form! Practice makes perfect. A steamed modak should be pristinely thin white skinned with its dark, moist sweet filling faintly visible, divine temptation and easily gone once served. In Maharashtra steamed modak take pride of place in homes, although there are also fried modak which keep longer, heavier in calories.

NEVRYO (nevreo, neuri, neurio)

NEVRYO (nevreo, neuri, neurio)


(These ivory half-moon crunchies are a favorite in Goa but they must have a soft crunch and not a hard crunch on which you may break a tooth!)
Ingredients
Dough: Half kg flour, 2 tbs ghee, oil to fry, water for kneading dough, pinch salt.
Filling: Finely grated coconut, half cup poppy seeds, half kg sugar, chopped caju, quarter tsp cardamom, half kg sugar, 2 tsp ghee, golden raisins chopped, half kg sugar, 2 tsp ghee, oil for frying.
Method
Make dough by binding flour, pinch salt, pure ghee and enough water to get a smooth dough. Cover with wrung out wet cloth and set aside.
Roast the ingredients of the filling together in a bit of pure ghee till you get an aromatic mix.
Now make about 20 to 25 puri using the dough. On each puri place a portion of the choon, fold in half and seal by fluting the edges. When all the nevri are done deep fry till very light pale gold. Store in air-tight tin box.

MOOGACHYO GAATTI

MOOGACHYO GAATTI


(Green moong gravy)
Ingredients
One and half cup sprouted moog, 1 cup grated coconut, 5 dry red chilies, 2 green chilies split and quartered, turmeric powder, 1 tsp jaggery, two curry leaf sprigs, inch piece tamarind, salt to taste, one and half tsp dry coriander seeds, Shankar brand hing, mustard seeds, 1 tbs coconut oil.
Method
Soak moong in water overnight. Drain next morning. Keep in drainer. Cover and keep aside for the whole day. At night soak the moog in water once again and next morning remove all the green shells floating atop. Rinse out moog sprouts, discard skins. Fry chilies and coriander in 1 tsp coconut oil and grind to a fine paste, adding coconut, turmeric powder and tamarind.
Now cook the sprouted moog in sufficient water. Do not pressure cook. When half cooked take out any excess water, add green chilies, curry leaf sprigs, salt to taste, jaggery. When sprouts are well cooked add coconut and salt. Simmer for another five or so minutes. Do phodni in coconut oil with mustard seeds and hing. Serve with rice.

CUCUMBER KARAM

CUCUMBER KARAM


Ingredients
1 medium size cucumber peeled and cut into cubes, 1 cup grated coconut, 2 green chilies, half inch piece tamarind, salt to taste, hing and mustard seeds.
Method
Grind together coconut, green chilies, tamarind and salt to taste to a coarse chutney. Add in cucumber pieces and mix well. Do phodni in bit coconut oil with mustard seeds and hing.
PAACHPALYACHI BHAJI
(For Gauri Pujan, five different varieties of green leafy vegetables are prepared, called Pachpalyachi Bhaji.)
Ingredients
Kuddukachi Bhaji, Dudyachi Bhaji, Maskachi Bhaji, talkilo, mulo, tambdi bhaji, dhavi bhaji, methi, grated coconut and salt to taste.
Method
Cook all the leafy vegetable together with little water. Add grated coconut and salt to taste and if required a chilly.

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