Cracked wheat with tons of veggies
This dish is modeled after the excellent Vegetable Baath that my mom makes. Baath is nothing to do with bathing, but this is a rice dish, that has loads of vegetables that are finely chopped, sauteed with whole spices and spice powders. The cooked rice is then cooled and delicately hand-mixed with the spiced vegetables. My favourite accompaniment to this is a ripe banana pachchadi (raita), the recipe for which I must share with you once I manage to capture a picture of this. This darn thing is so delicious that waiting to take a pic is an ultimate test of resolve
Here, I have not bothered to cook the veggies and wheat separately but cooked the wheat in a sort of stock where the vegetables have been half cooked. Next time, I intend to do it the way mom does it for the 'baath' and will update the results here
The result of the dish below is a cross between an upma and a pulao, which could have been due to some confusion in my head. The dals, ginger and curry leaves are the seasoning that are done in case of upmas and the whole spices are from the pulao end of the spectrum. You could use either one or both of them
- In a large wok, heat the ghee / butter and saute the cracked wheat for 3-4 minutes on medium flame till fragrant. Remove in a bowl. Cover with 3 cups of boiling hot water, cover and keep aside.
- In the same wok, heat the olive oil and add the whole spices (bay leaves, cloves, cumin, cardamom). After 30 seconds, add the mustard seeds. Let them crackle, and follow it with the udad dal and chana dal. These need to be sauteed for 1 minute on low to medium flame to turn them golden brown.
- Next, add the green chillies, ginger, curry leaves, red chillies. Stir them around for a minute or so, and transfer all the chopped veggies and greens into the wok. Add half the salt, sprinkle with water and cover with a tight fitting lid. Give it a stir every 2 minutes with more sprinkles of water. OR Place a thali (a dish with a rim) with one cup water in it to cover the wok and let the veggies cook for 6-8 minutes till almost tender.
- At this point, tip the bowl with the cracked wheat in hot water, into the wok. Add the spice powders (turmeric powder, sambhar powder), remaining salt, stir well and cover until the cracked wheat is cooked till tender. This will take around 6-8 minutes depending on size of the grains. Adjust salt and spiciness. Fluff with a fork and remove into a serving bowl.
- Serve hot with a bowl of chilled raita.
This is perfect when I don't want to fuss over making dinner. This one pot dish is nutritious, filling and tasty as well, and it is just right to send over to Meeta's Monthly Mingle : One dish dinners.