RataLyacha Khees

RataLe - Japanese Sweet Potatoes
Khees - Grated

Sweet Potatoes, yams, multiple types of potatoes available in this country used to be extremely confusing for me. Initially I must have spent almost 30 minutes around the potato bin to find the sweet potatoes(that I knew) almost on all the grocery trips. Then I just gave up and stopped buying them altogether as they are humongous in size and turned really pasty/mushy when I cooked them. They were not sweet and I just did not care for them after number of tries. I did manage to make this RataLyacha Khees with orange versions or yam and sweet potatoes and that was okay but in general could get acquainted with the taste or the texture.

Fast Forward about a year and I found 'the sweet potatoes' in farmers market just like the ones we get in India! They are known as Japanese Sweet Potatoes. They are small, purple skinned, pale white flesh inside, fibrous, sweet and very flavorful in general. These show up in market seasonally and I eat them to my heart's content! A friend of mine slices them lengthwise and brushes little bit of butter and wraps with aluminum foil and then grills them. Oh they taste just awesome!

Now back to the recipe. This is a very traditional Maharashtrian recipe and usually made on the religious fasting days. As all the other religious fasting recipes, this also contains peanut powder. But this is more healthier than the Sabudana Khichadi. I make it once in a while for breakfast. After eating too many Diwali sweets, and deep fried snack, you might be craving for simple home made breakfast, just like me. Now let's see how to make it - 

RataLyacha Khees
2 Large Japanese Sweet Potatoes (It should yield about 5-6 cups grated)
5-6 Green Chilies (or per taste)
2-3 tbsp Oil
1/4 cup Roasted Peanut Powder (more if you like it)
1 tsp Cumin Seeds
7-8 Curry Leaves
Salt per taste
Juice of 1/2 Lime/Lemon 
Few sprigs of Cilantro, finely chopped.
RataLyacha Khees - Ready to serve
Preparation - 
Wash sweet potatoes thoroughly so that all the soil is washed away. If soil is stuck to the tubers, please soak them in water for 10-15 minutes and then wash them thoroughly. Pat them dry.
Now chop green chilies either to fine pieces or just keep them whole with just one slit on every chili.
Peel off the skin using potato peeler. It might be bit difficult to peel as these are much denser than potatoes.
Grate the sweet potatoes and keep them aside. **
Heat oil in non stick pan, add cumin seeds. Once cumin seeds start spluttering, add curry leaves and green chilies. Let them sizzle for about a minute on medium heat.
Now add half of the grated sweet potatoes, sprinkle salt and peanut powder.
Spread the rest of the grated sweet potatoes over.
Start mixing everything carefully on lower medium heat. Once everything is mixed well, cover and let it cook for about 4-5 minutes on lower-medium heat. Then mix again little, cover and cook.
It should not be mushy but should be cooked. Sprinkle lemon juice and chopped cilantro over, mix again for another couple of minute.
Enjoy while its warm with cup of tea!

Tips - 
  1. ** Sweet potatoes turn black too quickly.  Do not grate them and keep aside for more than 5 minutes. Some suggest washing the shredded potatoes with water, but I do not do that because it looses all its nutrients that way. 
  2. Add more roasted peanut powder if you like. 
  3. You might have to use more chilies than one normally use, as these are 'sweet' potatoes. :)


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