Todays post features a simple yet delicious subzi-roti combination which I enjoy as a breakfast or lunch or a dinner meal.
Bottle Gourd curry/Kaddu ka Salan with Layered Flat Bread/Varqi Roti
Today I prepared Varqi Roti and simple Bottle gourd curry for our lunch. The procedure for Varqi Roti is simple and I have explained it using the pictorial tutorial below:
This is the procedure how my Grandmother/Nani used to prepare Varqi Roti for her husband, my beloved late Grandfather/Nana, who was a Tehsildaar, from the state of Lucknow, a great foodie and food enthusiast.
Varqi Roti – Flaky Flat Bread
Makes : 7 Rotis
Durum Wheat flour – 2 1/2 cups
Water – 2/3 cup
Salt – 1 1/2 tsp
Canola oil – for cooking the Roti
The materials used to prepare any flat bread/roti are a Girda and a Belan. Girda is a flat wooden board on which the flat bread/roti are rolled using the belan, which is the rolling pin. If you did not happen to buy a girda from your trip to India, use any flat wooden board available or a any clean flat surface like your kitchen countertop or a wooden cutting board. Keep a kitchen towel below the board to keep it steady while rolling the roti with the rolling pin.
Girda & Belan (Image Source – Internet)
1. In a bowl, add the flour and salt and mix well. Gently pour in water, a little at a time, to form soft dough.
2. Make golf sized balls out of the dough and roll it using flour into circles using a rolling pin on the flat wooden board.
3. Sprinkle flour on the rolled out roti and fold it as shown in the picture. Keep sprinkling flour after every fold. Follow these steps until it is folded into a rectangle.
4. Once it is folded into a rectangle, roll it out into a roti again.
5. Heat a cast iron flat griddle/tawa on medium high heat. Once it is hot, put the rolled over prepared roti on the heated griddle. Let it cook for a few seconds. You will notice small bubbles on the roti. Flip it with a rubber spatula or a flat spoon which you have and cook it on the other side again for a few seconds.
6. Now quickly brush the roti with oil with a silicone basting brush or usian a teaspoon all over, and flip it over. Again, working quickly, spead the oil over the other side too and flip it to cook that side. Line a platter with a papertowel and remove the roti onto the lined platter. Cover the roti with a kitchen towel until all are done to keep warm. Alternately you can also use a ‘Milton casserole/hot-pot‘ to keep the rotis warm.
Milton Products – An Indian brand for household items that is my personal favorite
Opo Squash, Tomatoes, Onion
Bottle gourd is an another favorite subzi which we all enjoy a lot along with Roti for meals. The plants of bottle gourd produce vigorous climbing vines and tendrils with fragrant white flowers. Ammi had a large bottle gourd plant during my childhood. Bottle gourd are a good source of choline and various minerals. It is a commonly used vegetable in India. They have a spongy white flash with white seeds in a fibrous center pith. This easily digestable vegetable has a kind of bland but delicious taste, so it is used to prepare both sweet and savory preparations.
Kaddu Ka Salan – Bottle Gourd in Tomato-Onion gravy
Bottle Gourd/Opo Squash/Kaddu – 1, small sized (it came to around 770 gms of chopped bottle gourd after peeling)
Canola Oil – 2 tsp
Yellow Onion – 1, large, finely sliced
Tomato – 2, medium sized, finely chopped
Salt – 1 1/2 tsp
Turmeric – 1/4 tsp
Red Chilli powder – 2 tsp
1. Wash, peel and chop the bottle gourd into small pieces. (You can either discard the peels or store them to prepare this delicious curry) (Discard if the seeds are hard, but if the seeds are tender, use them in the curry)
2. Pour oil into a pressure cooker at medium heat and as soon as it warms up, add the sliced onion. Let it cook till it is light brown in colour. Keep stirring occasionally. Once the onion is soft and browned, add the chopped tomatoes and cover the lid ajar for 2 minutes.
3. Add the bottle gourd, red chilli powder, turmeric, salt and 1/2 cup water. Mix well and cover the lid and pressure cook for about 8-10 minutes or until the bottle gourd is completely cooked. Serve the curry warm.
Voting for the Lok Sabha Elections in India ends and Congress wins with Dr.Manmohan Singh returning to power as the Prime Minister of India for the second consecutive time.