Monday, September 24, 2007

Tindora - Two Ways

Tindora or Kovakkai as it is known in Tamil was not a prevalent vegetable at home during my childhood. I've probably tasted it on some very rare occassions and didn't particularly like it. The very first time I warmed up to it was when I tasted a fry made by Kalai athai (for which I am yet to get the recipe). Later, I forgot all about it until I tasted a poriyal when Raji anni made it. The first preparation that I'm going to write about today is similar to Raji annis but is made a whole lot simpler by using the microwave. Even in the microwave this takes a while but it's low-maintenance and just needs some stirring once every 12-15 minutes, also it uses very little oil. We make this very often at home and is spicy and crisp.

TINDORA CRISPS

Ingredients:

Tindora - 1 pound, trimmed and cut into round slices
Onion - 1 medium, chopped finely.
Chilli powder - 1 tsp
Salt - to taste
Oil - 1 tsp + PAM

Method:

1) In a glass bowl, add the tindora pieces and microwave for 15 mins on High. No need to stir in between or add any water.

2) Meanwhile, Heat 1 tsp of oil in a pan, add the chopped onions and cook till light brown. Next add chilli powder and salt, fry for 2 to 3 more minutes.

3) Once the 15 mins are up, mix the onion mixture with the Tindora and spray some PAM. Return to Microwave for another 15 minutes. Again no-stirring.

4) The tindora will slowly get brown and cook down considerably. Add more PAM if necessary, stir well, return to microwave and cook for 10 - 15 minutes more till done, stirring once / twice in between. The longer you cook, the crispier it will get and also a bit chewy.


STUFFED TINDORA

Recently I came across this recipe at Ammalu's Kitchen and now this is another favorite preparation at home for Kovakai (besides the one above). It's a bit more labor intensive and time consuming but very well worth the effort. Ammalu says that it's her Pedatha's recipe who is famous for stuffed vegetables and I can very easily see why after tasting this. I am documenting her recipe here for my future reference.

Ingredients:

Tindora - 25
Oil - 1 tbsp

To Grind:

Besan (Kadalai Maavu) - 1/4 cup
Coconut (dessicated) - 1/4 cup
Chilli Powder - 1 tsp
Salt - to taste

Method:

1) Make a plus-shaped slit in the Tindora leaving one end intact so it holds it's shape. Microwave these for 5 mins on High with a few tbsp of water and some salt. Drain the water.

2) Grind the besan, coconut, chilli powder and salt. Stuff this mixture into the Tindora carefully.

3) Heat a wide pan with the oil and put the tindora as a single layer. Keep it on a medium flame. Cover this pan with a plate with some water on it.

4) Turn them over a few times so all sides of the tindora get cooked evenly and get browned.

I can't stop popping these into my mouth just by themselves. They are just so tasty. Thanks to Ammalu and her Pedatha.

16 comments:

  1. Beautiful recipes. I bought some frozen Tindoras 2 weeks ago, I know they don't taste the same as fresh but hey! That's all I can do!:D

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  2. Lavanya...I love both the versions of Tindoora......Nice ones dear :-)

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  3. fatastic recipes. These will be sent to mom to finish of her garden tindora.

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  4. laavanya.. i love kovakai! i have never made this in the microwave..yumm i will try it out!!

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  5. i am confused about which one to pick :)

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  6. I pressure cook my tindora. Microwaving is a good option too. Thx for pointing that out!

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  7. I was eating it before, but somehow now a days i don't eat this vegetable Laavanya. Your post tempts me to try again. RCI Tamil Festival food is on. Expecting your contribution as usua. Tks. Viji

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  8. Laavanya, I'm forever in search of the crisp tindora recipe that's made at home, I never succeed in replicating it - yours sounds like IT.

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  9. hey, i too like the crispy one. using the m/w is a good idea ;)

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  10. 1st time here. Great blog. All the best.

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  11. I love kovakka(tindora).I make it in a different way.
    The stuffed version sounds very good but is a lot of work. If only someone would do that for me!

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  12. Thank you Asha. I've not tried with frozen before.

    Thank you Sirisha :)

    Pooja.. it's great that your mom has fresh growing in her backyard.

    Rajitha, I love the mw version too. Do give it a shot. Towards the end, keep a watchful eye on it.

    Nags, don't pick.. try both :)

    Suganya, The mw also takes quite a bit of time but atleast it doesn't need a lot of tending to.

    Hope you give it a shot Viji. Just checked your blog with the new RCI. Sounds cool.. will definitely contribute.

    Hi Sra, Thanks.. i hope this is IT. Do try and let me know. :)

    Thank you Richa.

    Pushpa, Hi! Welcome... You have commented on my other blog before when I baked your banana bread! :) Good to have you back and your baking skills.

    TBC, you must try the stuffed... my husband's colleague (American lady) loved it after tasting it and wants me to make a big batch for her. Since it's quite time consuming, I only make 25 at a time so it's difficult to make a lot. Try with a little .. maybe 10 or 12.. then the taste will motivate you to do more. :)

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  13. Laavanya, I can eat tindora in any form and shape, t-crips looks yummy n so are the stuffed ones too!

    Try sailu's way thats fabulously rich in flavor, I make them when I have guest for lunch or dinner

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  14. hey, I love both the ways but for me both the recipes consume lot of oil. your method looks very simple. got to try it like this. I dont cook much in Microwave.

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  15. So sweet lavanya, you have made my day, this was such a common dish at home that I took it granted. Im impressed with the response and Im sure my pedatha will be happy to know this, she is in the US at the moment and maybe i will get a few more good ones from her and post!

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  16. Hey stuffed tindora is awesome. Chopping tindora is always a time consuming task to me.
    I guess the stuffed way should not take much time.

    Thanks for the lovely post.

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