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Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Bagaara Celery and Mathaan (yellow pumpkin)

I am from HyderabAd, a city known for its Biryani, Mirchi ka Saalan and Bagaara Baingan. My inspiration for this particular recipe is the famous Bagaara Baingan (Brinjal). I have never been able to find information on the origin of this word Bagaara but have concluded that it simply means to spice things up!

There may be different versions of the same dish and each one had its own pros and cons. My procedure is thanks to my health or lack of it(I am a bit low on energy levels and stamina, so have short cuts for standard methods).

You need: serves 2
Pumpkin - cubed - 1 cup
Celery - chopped - 1 cup
water 2 or 3 Tbsp
oil - 1 tsp ( optional as I skipped it)
bay leaf - 1
cumin- 1/4 tsp
curry leaves -2 or 3

onion - 1/4 cup
Coriander seeds - 1 1/2 T
Cumin - 1  1/2 tsp
Ginger - 1" piece
Garlic - 2 cloves
cardamon - 2
cinnamon - 1/2" piece
clove - 2
Coconut (preferably dry) - 1/4 cup
Tamarind - size of a small lime
Ground nuts and/or almonds - 2 T
salt to taste
oil - 1 tsp
turmeric powder
til / sesame seeds - 1 tsp

cilantro leaves / coriander leaves



  • Dry roast all of masala ingredients (except the tamarind)
  •  Grind roasted spices into a fine paste with pre soaked tamarind
  • Saute one bay leaf, a little cumin, add the Celery and pumpkin (diced).
  • Add salt and turmeric, add a little water
  • Once the veggies look translucent, add the paste and cook with curry leaves and coriander/cilantro leaves until the gravy has a nice aroma
  • Garnish with coriander/cilantro leaves before serving
This is works well as is or as a side dish for roti or rice. Call me crazy, but I have tried combining this curry (minus the ginger) with penne and also spaghetti. I loved it. I definitely don't like a layer of oil floating over food. Trick to skip oil completely for this recipe is to dry roast all your spices with coconut going in last. Oil layer left behind works just lke your cooking spray. If you think food doesn't taste "good" without oil, I' d say, have an open mind, try something new and you'll love it. 

Before I sign off, herez the picture.

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