Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Kanda Poha

For many Puneites or Maharashtrians, a Poha Program is a running joke and for some a pretty hair- raising experience. For the non-Maharashtrians, a poha program is when a boy of marriageable age goes to a girl's house for the purpose of an arranged marriage with the decision makers of his family. Decision maker in this case may or may not include the two parties actually getting hitched. The meeting usually takes place in the evening hours. Somewhere around tea time, but much before dinner time. The most popular dish that is served at this time is Kanda Pohe. Very quick and easy to make, and really hard to screw up. And no matter who makes the Poha, it is always passed off as a shining example of the bride-to-be's many special talents. As for those of you guys who fell in love without first testing the poha-power of your bride to be, you can still fix a decent plate for yourselves. Here's how:

3 cups Thick Poha
1 large White Onion finely chopped
1 Potato cut into small pieces
3-4 Chillis each cut into 3-4 pieces
6-7 Curry Leaves (Kaddipatta)
1/2 tsp Mustard Seeds
3/4 tsp Sugar
3/4 tsp Turmeric
1/2 cup Cilantro chopped (Coriander)
1/2 cup oil
Salt to taste
1/2 cup Fresh Coconut shredded
1 Lemon cut into quarters

Soak Poha in a sieve and drench completely
Place it aside
Place oil in a deep pot on medium heat.
Add mustard seeds and curry leaves.
Once mustard seeds splatter add chili, onion and potato in that order
Cover with a lid stirring occasionally
When potatoes are cooked
Add Poha, turmeric, sugar, salt and coriander
Mix well, close lid
Cook for 4-5 min on medium heat stirring occasionally
Serve hot in a flat quarter plate with a slice of Lemon
Garnish with Coconut and Cilantro