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In the first episode of our ‘Our Kitchen Chef’ series, we visited the kitchen of Siddhi Kanadia, a housewife and a cook with magic in her fingers. She is from Ambreli (Rajkot) in Gujarat.

Siddhi’s generosity was evident during our brief visit to her place in Borivli – neighbors kept dropping in to say hi, her sister-in-law was there to spend time with her… each demanding her attention and turning to her for everything from food to making tea or to find something in the house… she answered and attended to all of them without a hint of a complaint, all the while ensuring that we were comfortable and telling us every possible detail about the dish she was going to prepare for us – undhiyu.

Siddhi began cooking when she was 12 and learnt the secrets of Gujarati cuisine from her mother. She has fond food memories about her mother that still brings tears to her eyes. Watch the video to see her talk about how she remembers sitting on the terrace of her home with her mother and siblings, cutting vegetables for undhiyu. I feel all good cooks are naturally warm and moving people, simply because it takes a lot of patience and a certain degree of selflessness to produce delicious yet healthy food for your loved ones.

I’ve tasted Siddhi’s food in the past. Be it thepla, undhiyu, or farsans like chakli and papadi, there is something about her food that reminds one of the comforts of home. And don’t even get me started on her pickles!

Siddhi told us that unidhiyu in Gujarat is of two types: one is the green undhiyu and the other is red undhiyu, prepared with masalas like turmeric, coriander powder and red chilies. She gave us the recipes for both but the one you see her making in the video is green undhiyu.

Real Review: Undhiyu Recipe

A quick brief on unidhiyu – it is mostly prepared during winter and hence consists mostly of winter vegetables. It is also a winter dish in the sense that there is a lot of fat content in undhiyu which makes it ideal to be eaten in a cold climate.

As I discovered, preparing authentic unidhiyu can be a time-consuming process but it helps you pick up some useful skills – you learn how to cut vegetables a certain way, how to keep spices fresh without using a refrigerator and how to prevent allergies that many people experience on consuming yam.

This is how Siddhi prepares undhiyu:

Real Reviews: Undhiyu Recipe

Ingredients:

1.  Green banana – 1

2. Purple yam (suran) –  1

3. Potatoes – 1 big or 2 small

4. Sweet potato (shakariya, shakarkandi or ratalu) – 1

5. Aubergine (baingan) – 4-5 small

6. Surtipapadi (sugar snaps or flat beans) – 100 gm

7. Tuaire or valpapadi– 100 gm

8. Peas – 100 gm

9. Green garlic cloves– 10-12

10. Green coriander leaves or cilantro –1 cup

11. Ginger and green chilly paste – 2 tsp

12. Sugar – 1 tsp (optional)

13. Green chilies – 1 or 2, cut fine (optional)

14. Coconut powder or flakes (fresh or dry) – 50 gm

15. Carom seeds (ajwain) – 2 tsp

16. Asafetida (heeng) – ½ tsp

17. Salt – according to taste

18. Water – 1-1.5 cups

19. Oil – enough for frying vegetables

real reviews: undhiyu recipe 

Ingredients for muthiyas:

1. Gram flour (besan) – 1cup

2. Green fenugreek leaves – 1 cup, chopped

3. Salt – 1 tsp

4. Sugar – ½ to 1 tsp

5. Red chilli powder – 1 tsp

6. Coriander powder – 1-2 tsp

7. Turmeric powder – 1tsp.

8. White sesame seeds – 1tsp

9. Ginger and green chilly paste – 1 tsp or 2 tsp as per the taste

10. Baking powder (meetha soda) – ¼ tsp

11. Lemon – ½ small

12. Garam masala (Indian all spices) – ¼ tsp

13. Oil for kneading – 4 tsp to bind the dough if required, then add little more

14. Oil for frying

Instructions for the muthiyas:

1. Mix all the ingredients together. Water from the green fenugreek leaves, lemon and oil work as the binders for the dough. The idea is to bring all the dry ingredients together so that you can shape them.

Remember: If you feel the dough is not moist enough, add a little water to bind the dough or bring it together.

2. Shape the dough into small muthiyas or balls.

3. Fry them in hot oil. While adding the muthiyas in the oil, ensure that the oil is hot enough and then reduce the flame to medium and fry muthiyas till they are slightly brown in colour.

Real reviews: undhiyu recipe

Instructions for Siddhiundhiyu:

1. Use the oil in which muthiyas were fried. If you feel it is not enough to fry all the vegetables, add some more oil and heat it again. The quantity of oil should be enough for frying.

2. When the oil is hot, fry all the vegetables on medium or high flame. Do one type of vegetable at a time, starting with the potatoes since they take a little longer to fry. Then fry the sweet potatoes, yam, green banana and so on. Finally, fry all the greens i.e. surati papadi (sugar snaps) and tuaire (val), These will take 2-3 minutes of frying. All the vegetables will become half-cooked.

3. In another pan, put some oil, enough to splutter carom seeds, sesame seeds and asafoetida. Add green garlic and ginger chilies paste and fry for two minutes.

4. Add fried vegetables, salt, coconut powder, coriander powder, sugar and add 1 cup of water. Cover the pan and cook all the ingredients together on a low flame for 5 minutes. If it is too dry, add an additional ½ cup of water. It’s better to add some extra water now because the muthiyas will later soak in most of the liquid and leave the undhiyu dry.

5. Now add the muthiyas and cook again for 5 min.

6. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with chapattis, puris or paranthas.

To make red undhiyu: Follow the same recipe, except that in Step 4, add 1-2 tsp of red chilly powder and 1 tsp of turmeric powder.

real reviews: undhiyu recipe

Things to remember 

Cutting vegetables (refer to the video to see how its done): 

Aubergines: Use small-sized aubergines. In undhiyu, the aubergines are kept whole and not sliced. However, to ensure that the aubergines are well-cooked, first remove the green stalk on top, then make a cut at the tail end up to ¾ the length of the aubergine. Then on the other end, make another cut of the same size. Both the cuts will be T-shaped.

Tuaire (val): The beans have to be taken out of the pods, the same way we do with peas.

Surti beans (sugar snaps): Remove the stringy part from both sides of the bean. Then separate the pod and cut to desired size

Yam: Many people complain of itching and a burning sensation on their hands while cutting yam and also a dryness or irritation in the throat on eating it. To avoid such an experience, after peeling the yam, rub a little salt on your hands before cutting. After the yam is cut, rub generous amounts of salt into the pieces and keep aside for 5 minutes. After this, wash the pieces thoroughly before cooking.

How to store coriander powder:

Dry roast whole coriander seeds until they are slightly brown in colour. Cool and grind them in the mixer. Store in an airtight container to keep the powder worm-free for upto 6 months.

How to make ginger green chilly paste:

Ginger and green chilly paste is a common ingredient in Gujarati food. Siddhi told us that she makes enough of this mixture and keeps it in the fridge for a month. All you have to do is chop 50 gm of ginger and 100 gm of green chillies and grind in a grinder. Add 1 tsp of lemon juice and ¼ tsp of salt to this mixture and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

2 Responses

  1. Manisha Sharma

    Hi leena,

    Thank you for the comment and visiting our website…

    regards
    manisha

    Reply

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