Saturday, 24 May 2014

Motorshuti diye Chire Bhaja ( Crispy beaten rice with green peas)



Of late weather has been the hot topic of discussion in our country (no pun intended). The eastern part especially Kolkata is going through a terrible hot and humid climate and recording 41 degrees quite frequently. Whenever I call up Ma in the morning most of the days the chat would start with how hot it is currently in both ends of the country. Over here in Pune its been a mixed summer. There were hot, humid days, then there were chilly thunder shower days and currently its mix of hot during the day and  pleasant by the night. The weather forecast is predicting the Monsoon would be reaching Kerela by 3rd June which means in another week from that it would surely reach Maharashtra. Somehow I felt the Summers were short lived this time, maybe because of the occasional showers that we had throughout the past two months in Pune, the heat did not get onto our nerves. But not all states of Pune are that fortunate, parts of Solapur, Pandharpur, Latur and all such parts of the states are still reeling under the heatwave.

During the Summer months the appetite of having heavy greased food automatically comes down. We crave for lighter, easy on the tummy dishes and lot of chilled drinks to wash down the food. Unlike the past years where Summer would see us having lots of aerated drinks whenever we felt the urge of having something refreshing this year both me and hubby turned towards a healthier drink - the age old lebur sorbot or nimbu shikanji or lemonade. I make sure my fridge always has some of these juicy lemons to be squeezed and made into a drink. Even as I am write this blog post I am sipping lebur sorbot.


Me or hubby both are not much fond of tea during summers. Hence during the weekend evening a cup of tea and biscuits don't work for us. The moment he is up from his afternoon siesta, he will ask for something to eat. Now I am very poor in snack ideas. Maybe a bit lazy too in making elaborate evening snacks. Because that's the time I read or write usually. But then need to feed the hungry stomach too. So I usually think of some easy ways to get the snacks done in jiffy. A couple of weeks back I had got frozen momo which I would steam and serve and it only took me 15 minutes of work. But then unused stomach started revolting against the overdose of Maida (flour) and Momo was striked off from the list. Rainy season would see me making a lot of assorted pakodas but its still Summer and fried oily stuffs are not an option right now. So I reverted back to the safest and easiest option - Chire Bhaja.

Chire or Chiwda or beaten rice is such a versatile ingredient. It can be used to make healthy breakfast dishes or peppy fried snack preparations that are still healthy and light than any other fried snacks. Chire bhaja or crispy beaten rice is one of the many popular snacks among Bengalis. We like to have our chide bhajas with fried peanuts, shredded coconuts, chanachur, just with sugar, or with lightly fried green peas (motorshuti). Anything just goes fine with the unassuming chide bhaja. Often its taken along with a cup of tea. But as I have mentioned we dont prefer tea during hot evenings hence its Chire bhaja as is for us. My hubby who is a very choosey eater even likes this dish a lot.

I really like my chire bhaja with fried green peas. Its this mix of sweet and soft peas with the crispiness of the fresh fried beaten rice with the titillating aroma of fried ginger and crushed pepper ummm its really a winner preparation. Check out the recipe below.

Preparation Time: 5 minutes  

Cooking Time: 15 minutes

Serves: 2


Cuisine: Bengali 
Ingredients:
  • Chire (Beaten rice) - 2 cup
  • Dried Red Chilli - 2
  • Ginger - 1 inch chopped into thin pieces
  • Green Peas (Frozen or fresh) - 3/4th cup 
  • Pepper powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Salt & Sugar as per taste
  • Refines Oil for frying
  •  Sev (Chickpea noodles) - 1/2 cup (optional)

Procedure:

1.Heat two tbsp oil in a skillet

2. When its hot crack the red chillies and toss it into the oil

3. Add the ginger pieces and fry

4. Add the tender green peas into the skillet. Add a pinch of salt and coarsely crushed black pepper. Fold in. Saute for a couple of minutes and then take it out on a paper napkin

You can use either frozen or fresh peas. If you are using fresh peas then boil it till they are soft and drain the water. If your are using frozen then blanch the peas till tender.


5. Add some oil in the skillet and fry the beaten rice in batches taking care to put only a single layer of beaten rice everytime so that each one is fried properly. Do not overcrowd else there are chances the beaten rice will not puff correctly. This required patience and skill but its worth the final result.

6. Drain excess oil on a paper napkin.

Take a bowl and place the crispy fried rice first. place the fried peas on the bed of the beaten rice. Add some sugar and salt to balance the taste. Add the sev. Mix everything and eat immediately. If you like you can toss a few chopped onion pieces for that extra crunch and juiciness.


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