The next destination in our eclectic culinary adventure is Garhwal, a picturesque region nestled in the serene foothills of the Himalayas. The area is located in the Indian state of Uttarakhand – but Garhwal is far more ancient and has a rich history going all the way back to 688 CE when King Kanak Pal of the Panwar dynasty established the Garhwal Kingdom. This region also has a fascinating culinary heritage with many traditional recipes that have been passed down from one generation to the next for thousands of years.
In today’s post we will be exploring one such recipe – a traditional Garhwali dish called Kafuli, also known in some parts of Garhwal as Dhapdi. It is a spicy, flavoursome preparation made with spinach and fenugreek leaves.
Traditionally, a heavy Indian grinding stone known as Sil Batta is used to grind the spinach and fenugreek. Also, the cooking process involves gently simmering in an iron Kadhai (wok) over a low flame for an extended period of time. However, for our modern-day home-cooked version of Kafuli, we will speed things up by using everyday kitchen appliances like pressure cookers and blenders.
Here are the ingredients that you will require.
Spinach (Palak) Leaves: 300 grams
Fenugreek (Methi) Leaves: 100 grams
Yogurt (Dahi): 30 grams
Rice Flour: 1 tablespoon
Green Chillies: 2
Ginger (Adrak): One half-inch piece
Mustard Oil: 6 tablespoons
Asafoetida (Heeng): Just a pinch
Coriander (Dhania) Powder: 1 teaspoon
Turmeric (Haldi) Powder: Half a teaspoon
Cumin (Jeera) Powder: 1 teaspoon
Salt: to taste
The quantities mentioned above are for serving four persons. Adjust the quantities proportionately to suit the number of servings that you require.
Wash the spinach and fenugreek leaves, and gently squeeze them to remove any excess water. Then coarsely chop the spinach and fenugreek.
Finely chop the green chillies.
Peel and finely chop the ginger.
Take the yogurt in a bowl and beat it.
In a mixing bowl take the rice flour along with around 100 millilitres of water. Mix well and keep aside.
Take the spinach, fenugreek, green chillies and salt in a pressure cooker. Add a little water and then close the lid; pressure cook for two whistles. Then turn the heat off and let the pressure release slowly. Once the contents have cooled down, place them in a blender to create a smooth paste.
Heat the Mustard Oil in a pan on a High flame till it reaches its smoking point. This will be indicated by streams of white smoke rising from the surface of the oil. Then reduce the flame to Medium.
Add the ginger to the hot oil and sauté till it becomes soft.
Next, add the spinach-fenugreek paste and stir to mix well.
Now it’s time to add the spices one by one. Add the asafoetida, coriander powder, turmeric powder and cumin powder. Stir well to mix the spices with the spinach-fenugreek paste.
Slowly add the rice flour mixture to the pan, stirring to mix it with the other contents.
Next, add the beaten yogurt to the pan and continue to stir the mixture gently till it thickens. At this point you can also check and adjust the salt, if required.
Your traditional Garhwali Kafuli is now ready. Serve it hot. In Garhwali homes, this is usually eaten with rice. Chefs and moms in Garhwal believe that the relatively subdued taste of the rice will help you to identify and enjoy the distinctive flavour of this fascinating Pahadi dish.
You can find more recipes at : https://www.purioilmills.com/recipes-in-english/