The custom of cooking in community ovens or tandoors prevails in rural pockets even today. The cuisine is characterised by a profusion of dairy products in the form of malai, paneer and dahi. The dals are a speciality of this type of cuisine, made of whole pulses like black gram, green gram and Bengal gram. They are cooked on slow fire, often simmered for hours till they turn creamy and then flavoured with spices and rounded off with malai for that rich finish. The most unique thing about cooking in a tandoor is the smoky flavour that the food gets making it tastier. Moreover it is a healthy way of cooking since minimum fat is required and the food generally gets cooked in its own juices thus retaining its natural flavours. Besides it is not only easy to digest, it is also very hygienic. In conclusion one can safely say that it is through tandoori cooking that Indian cuisine first got globally acknowledged. So here is the recipe of masala Bhindi:
- Ladyfingers 500 grams
- Oil 4 tablespoons
- Cumin seeds 1/2 teaspoon
- Onions sliced 2 large
- Green chillies slit 3-4
- Red chilli powder 1 teaspoon
- Coriander powder 1 tablespoon
- Turmeric powder 1/2 teaspoon
- Dry mango powder (amchur) 2 teaspoons
- Wash and dry the bhindi or wipe with a wet cloth. Cut both the ends and cut into two inch long pieces. Slit the pieces horizontally without cutting them into two.
- Heat the oil in a kadai and add the cumin seeds. When they change colour, add the onions and saute till light golden. Add the green chillies and saute for half a minute.
- Add the bhindi and sprinkle the red chilli, coriander and turmeric powders. Mix well. Cook covered over low heat stirring occasionally.
- Add the salt and amchur. When the bhindi is almost cooked, increase the heat and cook for two minutes.
- You may use tiny onions for this recipe. Peel and make deep cross cuts in onions and stuff with a mixture of turmeric powder, coriander powder, red chilli powder, salt and amchur. Use same stuffing for bhindi and cook covered, with a little oil and green chillies.