Today’s recipe is a very simple preparation, fresh and yet simple flavors. But staying true to this legendary Da Vinci saying “simplicity is the ultimate sophistication”, it will invariably make you build, quite unknowingly too, a sophisticated net of memories that come to surface every time you smell the tangy, steamy fragrance of Kande Pohe.
When I used to go to my grandma’s house situated in a tiny village perched between Sahyadri Ghaat and Arabian sea, we ate this nearly every other morning. And I never grew tired of it. It was perfect; in her neat riverside cottage style home, it was served piping hot on a banana leaf with mango pickle to go along with. We would sit on a cool clay covered floor, not too far from coconut and jackfruit trees and cows and eat this delicious breakfast together with all my cousins while my aunts would chat, laugh and make sure we all finished it properly.
It was pure happiness- stacked and overflowing in those timeless moments! This is an attempt to capture the mood of the house there. Sitting in the patio, we would look out on this barn which supplied (and still does) dairy for the household..
The dish that guarantees a fabulous trip down memory lane is a quintessential Sunday morning breakfast if you live along the coast of Maharashtra. It is in my (childhood nostalgia) eyes, the all time BEST breakfast/snack item. Perfect eaten steaming hot, immediately followed by a hot cup of tea, it’s comfort food, soul food, meditational and invigorating. I am not randomly sticking these words here because it sounds good. Try it on a Saturday or Sunday morning amidst a collage of particularly hectic weeks on either side, I guaranty eating this will sooth your worries. May be momentarily, but it sort of stops the time for you. Let’s you see the moment for what it is- a great warm morning on sun flooded patio looking out on to a nice full garden with fruit and flower trees you have always enjoyed!
Days like that are becoming rarer and luxury we all seek after in the year that goes by in a zap..
Therefore, you find clever ways to make each moment count. And let me tell ya- Pohe is it!!
This is made with flattened rice and is rich in carbohydrates but very low on fats. Hence, the primary consumption is during early hours of the day where you need a burst of energy to kick-start your day and have long hours ahead to burn off those calories. To add flavor and more content, you add onions (kande in Marathi) and potatoes. Sliced chilies, fresh cilantro and dash of lemon or lime juice! If you have fresh grated coconut, it will bring heaven in your plate and that’s a promise!
And what always makes it better? Unbelievably quick! No more than 20 minutes to whip this magic out…
Your Map to Kande Pohe
Author: Minty Chai
Total Time: 20 min
- 2 cups thick Pohe- flattened rice grain
- 1/2 onion
- 1 potato
- 1-2 chiles
- 3-4 curry leaves
- 1/3 teaspoon asafoetida
- 3/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
- chopped cilantro
- 1/4th lemon- cut into pieces
- salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- Wash and thoroughly rinse pohe 3 times and set them aside for 5 minutes to let them soak moisture and soften.
- In that time, finely chop onion, slice chilies and cut potatoes into small wedges.
- On medium heated pan, add the vegetable oil. Once it’s sufficiently hot, add mustard seeds, curry leaves, asafoetida and turmeric powder. Add onions, chilies and potatoes.
- Saute everything till onions are translucent and potatoes little tender. Add pohe and salt. Cover cooked for 2-3 minutes.
- Serve hot with sliced piece of lemon, garnish with cilantro.