Monday, September 16, 2013

Raji Bhajji (A mixed vegetable dish, I learnt from my aunt and her mom.. )


Vegetable and how to cut them
1 large cauliflower, break into small florets(neither too big nor too small)and chop the stem(don't discard)
1-2 large onion chopped 
1-2 capsicum/Green bell pepper chopped
1-2 carrots(optional) for color, chopped
2-4 potatoes chopped
4-5 large tomatoes chopped
1/2 to 1 cup of water

 For Tadka(Saute)
- 1-2 tbsp cooking oil
- 1 tbsp cumin seeds

For Seasoning
- 1 tsp red chilli powder
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp each of cumin and coriander powder
OR 1 tsp of dhana-jeera (coriander+cumin) powder
salt to taste

Garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves.

  1. Take oil in a deep wok/pan with a lid, add jeera, cover and keep in medium heat until it splutters.
  2. Add chopped onion, stir well.
  3. Add chopped capsicum/bell pepper.  Stir, cover and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add chopped tomato, stir well and cook for a minute or two.
  5. Add the potatoes, stir well and cook for 2-3 minutes. 
  6. Add the cauliflower, stir well.
  7. Add a cup of water(less is okay but don't add more since most of the vegetables release water when cooked) this allows the vegetables to cook evenly and also create the gravy for the dish..
  8. Cover and cook on high heat, when the water starts boiling, add turmeric powder and salt to taste and stir well. Cover and cook for 3-4 minutes.
  9. Add the seasoning spices(cumin, coriander, red chilli powder and salt).  You can add more red chilli to make it spicier or less to make it milder.
  10. Stir well, cover and cook until the potatoes are done stirring occasionally on medium flame (too much cooking and the cauliflower will disintegrate).
  11. *Cook without lid for a few minutes.
  12. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and enjoy.
The above is my dysfunctional style of cooking a mixed vegetable dish that tastes good with roti's, naan, chapatti or mixed with rice.  
At a potluck party, a long time ago, I was asked to make a mixed veg makhani dish and was completely clueless(no Internet to the rescue in those days)..  So followed the above recipe using 1/2 cup of water while cooking.  Finally at *step 11, added one cup of sour cream whisked smooth, to the vegetable and let it cook for a couple of minutes to absorb the spices.  Please don't bring to a complete boil as the cream will split.  Finally, garnish with coriander and enjoy. 
The sabzi/vegetable tastes delicious with or without the sour cream added in.  I often cook the sour cream version for my non-Indian friends who want to be introduced to Indian food.  It has been compared to butter chicken on occasion. :)

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