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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Celebrating Three Years of Blogging With Gavhacha Cheek

Today we are celebrating Gudhi Padava. It marks a new year and new beginning. Its more joyous occasion for me as today I complete 3 years of food blogging. Lot of things have changed since I started blogging. I started with writing in Marathi and later changed to both Marathi and English and now completely switched to English. Writing in Marathi comes easily to me while writing in English gives me opportunity to share traditional Marathi recipes with all my non Marathi friends. Will I start writing in Marathi again? May be! But today lets concentrate on bloggiversary And is there a better way of celebrating the journey than sharing a traditional recipe?

Summer vacations were great fun back when I was in school. Going to different kinds of camps was not an option, at least in the town I grew up in. There was no TV so main entertainment used to be either reading, painting or playing outside. Playing outside in hot sunny day was not an option because mom would call us back as soon as we stepped out. Pappa got me my own library card and I read couple of books per day. I would paint as much as I could.

Another thing that I remember was mom and her friends making papads, kurdai, potato wafers, sandage for the whole year. Those few days were most memorable as we would get to eat things that we would not get the whole year. All these batters, doughs are the most tasty things you could ever eat and then came half dried papads, kurdais and sandage were even more tastier.

The process to make these delicacies is usually very time consuming and labor intensive. Moms would do it years after years with their busy schedules. My mom stopped making most of it recently when me and my brother left homes for further studies.

I was chatting about all these things to my sister-in-law in my past India visit and how I miss it etc. She immediately soaked wheat to make this cheek just for me. As I said earlier it is labor intensive to make all these things. But I couldn't stop her. She is one enthusiastic girl I know. After 3 days of soaking, then grinding, straining and cooking slowly the cheek was ready to eat. Here she is, making the cheek -




Kuradaya raw and fried

In my recent visit to Whole Foods, I got wheat berries and immediately got it home. As you guessed, I made nice saturday morning breakfast out of it. Here is how --

Gavhacha Cheek

1 c whole wheat berries
water as needed
1/2 tsp poppy seeds
salt per taste

Preparation -



Pick over and wash the wheat berries. Soak them in about 2-3 cups of water. Cover and set aside. Next day change the water. The berries will be plumper than the day before. Again change water on 3rd day.
On fourth day, drain and rinse soaked wheat. Add them to food processor bowl. Grind coarsely, adding little water at a time.

Now with large strainer, strain the whole thing squeezing as much starch as possible. Repeat the procedure until there in no starch left in the wheat. You can use as much water as you want to get the starch out of wheat. Throw away the remaining wheat bran. I put it in my compost bin.


Let the starchy liquid rest for at least 5-6 hours. Then slowly drain water from the starch. Throw away that drained water.



Now measure the starch that is at the bottom of the vessel. If you have 1 cup of starch, start boiling 1 cup of fresh water. Add poppy seeds and salt per taste.
Slowly pour the starch in boiling water stirring constantly.
On a low to medium flame start cooking and stirring constantly. In few minutes the whole mixture will start forming lumps. Keep on stirring.
In about 2-3 minutes whole thing will form a big lump and it will start becoming translucent. Keep stirring for couple more minutes and then cover it, lower the flame and let it cook for 3-4 minutes.
Mix it together the last time and serve with peanuts, oil and sesame seeds. It tastes better when its warm but I can eat it at any temperature!

It was a journey through memory lane for me and I hope it is for you too.

Tips -
  1. My mom told me, instead of adding starch to boiling water, mix water to starch and mix well and start cooking together to avoid lumps.
  2. It tastes great with milk and bit sugar as well.
  3. Now a days you get the dried starch in packages in Pune/Mumbai. It makes life easier :)
  4. if you are planning to make kurdaya, use shev press with piping hot cheek to get nice and white kurdaya after drying in sun for at least 3-4 days.

29 comments:

  1. Congratulations, Minoti! Wish you and the blog a very happy new year :). This recipe brings back so many memories. It is hard work, but I guess that's one of the ways how Granny would shower her love and affection. Perfect choice of recipe for bloggiversary!

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  2. My mom makes a sweet out of this gavacha dudh (that is what she calls it) with coconut milk and jaggery. Never had this savoury version though.
    You are right, making it is labour intensive, but I guess it is worth all the effort for the memories it stirs.

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  3. Happy Blog Birthday and wishing you many more!

    Wow, that is indeed a labor of love, and yes, you did bring back happy memories of summer vacations, and helping to make the annual dried stuff, and having to run to the terrace to pull in the drying stuff frantically when it threatened to rain.

    Looking at those wheat berries reminded me of a kheer with whole soaked wheat berries, coconut milk and jaggery (almost vegan exccept for the ghee perhaps) that my Konkani grandmother used to make. It was divine.

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  4. Congratulations on the blog anniversary.

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  5. Congratulations! My mom used to make papads during the summer vacation. It is hard work. Good job.

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  6. Bravo! Happy anniversary and happy new year too. Like Srimathi, this post brought back memories of summer papad and kurdaya making.

    It would be so great if Blogger could allow bilingual blogging in two columns side-by-side. It would be labour-intensive to do each post in English and Marathi, but no more than the gavhaachaa chiik! :-)

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  7. Fantastic - what a great post. Terrific job with the video Mints!

    And of course, a big Congratulations on the blog anniversary.

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  8. Happy Blog anniversary.Nice post,informative video and too much of work :)

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  9. Nandan, Thank you!

    Aquadaze - I like the sweet version as well. It tastes like Karachi Halawa.

    Nupur - Thanks! And the running to terrace when there is even a slim chance of rain. And I love the gavhachi kheer! I have blogged about it here.

    Jayashri and Shrimati - Thank you!

    Desiknitter - Thanks! I wish there was good marathi - english translator available to help us bloggers!

    ET - Thank you!

    Ash - Thanks girl!

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  10. Happy Blog Anniversary!!! What a great post and definitely too much of hard work...

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  11. Happy Blog B'day!
    This post brought back so many memories of afternoons spent on hot terraces and stomach aches brought on by eating half dried papad and kurdaya.

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  12. How lovely Mints....you brought back many lovely childhood memories..I try as much to give such things to my kids..but as you said those days we didn't have TV..these days kids refuse to get away from it!..

    Happy Blog Anniversary again..wishes for many more to come!

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  13. Happy Anniversary! I once did something like this for some halwa, it took ages! I don't even remember the outcome. Nice pic of the Kuradaya.

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  14. Rachana - thanks.

    TC - Thanks! I am glad you remembered the times as well.

    Valli - Thanks! And surely times have changed.

    Sra - Thanks! And yes I know what you mean! Karachi halawa is pretty hard to make :) I am not going there yet.

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  15. Congrats for completing 3 years! Wish you many more wonderful years ahead!

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  16. aha!!! aai,sasu bai ajunahee karataat gavachya kurudya. tandalachya kurudyala tee chav yet naahee. bhayankar kashtacha kam aahe ga khar he.
    simply superb post.:)
    Seema

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  17. Hey Minoti! Abhinandan!

    you made so nostalgic by the gavhacha cheek bhanagaD! oh thoes golden summer holidays.... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .... .....! Keep it up!

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  18. Happy Birthday blog!!! May you live long!

    Only I know how many times I have stolen those half-done papad & kurdai, ripping them off from the plastic sheet (irrespective of whose sheet it belonged to – my mom or some neighbor kaku). If there was any imprisonment for pilfering those delicacies then I would have been behind bars every summer vacation :)

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  19. Happy birthday Blog!! May you live long! ;)

    Only I know how many times I have stolen that half-done papad & kurdai ripping it off from the plastic sheet (irrespective of whose sheet it belonged to – my mom or some neighbor kaku). If there was any imprisonment for pilfering those delicacies then I would have been behind bars every summer vacation :)

    ~ Mrinal

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  20. Parita - Thanks.

    Seema - Thank you!

    GD - It makes me nostalgic too :)

    Mrinal - Oh yeah! I would have behind the bars evey vacation too and for the same reasons probably :)

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  21. happy Blog anniversary!!!!! this recipe is new to me..looks simply delicious..
    First time here...cute space..

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  22. mast video and recipe.

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  23. Hi, I visited ur blog couple of times before..its wonderful...I can't believe that I found gavachya kurdaya recipe here...I feel like I should eat it right away...I still have few kurdaya left which my mom gave me during this india trip...lahan panichya athawani jagya zalya to gavacha cheek baghun..I will definitely try it during this summer!!

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  24. oh nice!! i do love it and craving for it during pregnancy.. dont know if its good to eat in pregnancy though....

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  25. Hi mints, I haven fallen in love with your blog for your maharashtrian recipes, I love authentic recipes, I have collected some from my sis who lives in pune from her Maharashtrian friends, but some I found here are so lovely, I am basically from karnataka, we make sweet out of this and call bit halbhai learnt from my Aunt, still planning to prepare, I will definitely try some of your authentic recipes., I am your new follower and fb fan, do visit me when you have time...thanks jayasri

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Jayasri for your lovely comment. Yes, we also make sweet out of this.

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  26. the bran is seasoned and dried to make what is called bhooswadi! it shd be fried and eaten.

    ReplyDelete

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