The year, that I was away from blogging, for every tough time that I went through, there were also some wonderful times and beautiful moments that I had with my loved ones. There were also moments filled with solace and immense peace. I travelled with my bua (paternal aunt) to my home town to attend the annual congregation of the followers of my late spiritual guru, a practice that began 85 years ago; initiated by Gurudev himself. Sessions are held where prolific orators (from amongst his followers) give discourse on his teachings and from the holy books that hold his teachings and hymns.
½ cup sour yogurt
1 cup shredded lauki/ghiya/dhoodhi (ash gourd) – you can even use courgette
½ cup shredded carrots
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 tsp fruit salt (I used Eno)
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp caster sugar
¼ tsp red chili powder
½ tsp turmeric
2 green chilies, ground to paste (I used 2 large ones)
1 heaped tsp ginger paste
1 heaped tsp garlic paste
Salt to taste (I used 1½ tsp)
3 tsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
10 curry leave (I tore them into two-three pieces with hand)
3-4 whole red chiles (I tore them into bite size pieces and removed seeds)
½ tsp black sesame seeds
½ tsp white sesame seeds
A few black and white sesame seeds for sprinkling
Soak the coarsely ground rice and lentils overnight using yogurt (curd/ dahi). Add some warm water (i used 1 table spoon at a time) to bring the batter to a very thick consistency. Ferment the batter overnight or for 10-12 hours.
Add shredded veggies in the morning along with chopped onion, lemon juice, sugar, chili powder, turmeric, salt and ginger garlic green chili paste. Mix well.
Heat oil in a pan and add together the mustard seeds and the red chilies (I fry them till they attain a deep color and a smoky flavor). Next tip in the sesame seeds. Add curry leaves and once everything starts crackling, remove from the heat and add to the batter. Mix well. Mix fruit salt with 1 tbsp of water and add to the mix. Mix well again. Bring the batter to a thick consistency using water gradually; a tablespoon at a time. T
o make the handvo the traditional way, grease a medium sized non stick pan with a little oil and heat it and pour in the batter. Sprinkle the sesame seeds, cover the pain and reduce the heat. Cook for approx 10 minutes. When cooked, it will leave sides. Turn it over and cook for another 5 minutes. Remove from the pan and slightly cool the handvo. Slice and serve with a chutney of your choice.
I made the handvo in the oven using a 9 inch square pan. Preheat the oven at 180-190 degrees C
Line the base and sides of the pan with parchment or butter paper. Pour the batter in the tin and bake it till it turns slightly golden and when a skewer inserted comes out clean (approximately 30-35 minutes)
Cool slightly and remove from the pan. Using a serrated knife, slice the handvo and serve with chutney. I served the handvo with Mint and Cilantro Chutney.
I used the following: 1 cup mint leaves ½ cup cilantro (dhaniya patta/ fresh green coriander) ½ tsp amchoor (dry mango powder) or lemon juice ½ tsp salt or to taste 1 shallot (small onion) 1 green chili Blitz everything together in a mixer-grinder and the chutney is done!
Update: (9th Sept. 2-13) – I suggest you double or even triple the amount of chutney ingredients to go with this much amount of handvo.
Note: While soaking the rice and lentils, don’t be tempted to make the batter loose since next morning veggies will be added and they will add their natural water to it
Note: The consistency of the batter should be approximately that of fritters. (However a thicker one is preferable)
Note: Feel free to use veggies of your choice – peas, courgettes, cabbage, beans, etc
Note: Do not be intimidated with the amount of chilies. Both, the whole red ones and fresh green ones add a different flavor to the dish.
Note: You can keep the lentils and rice ground separately in separate containers and use them at your convenience.
Note: There are special pans in which handvo is traditionally made, however, you can use a non-stick pan (as suggested in this recipe)
Serves – 5-6
Thanks for visiting and see you again! Post linked to MLLA event #63 hosted this month by Swathi of Zesty South Indian Kitchen. My Legume Love Affair or MLLA is an event that was the brain-work of Susan who began it in 2008. The show is now being run by Lisa of Food and Spice blog.