- Banana Flower - 200gms
- Turmeric Powder - 1tsp
- Green Gram - 25gms
- Bengal Gram - 1tsp
- Black Gram - 1tsp
- Mustard Seeds - 1/2tsp
- Cumin Seeds - 1/2tsp
- Green Chilies – 3
- Ginger - Small Piece (Make Paste of Ginger & Chilies)
- Curry Leaves – Few
- Red Chili Powder - 1/4tsp
- Turmeric Powder - 1/4tsp
- Salt to Taste
- Oil - 4tsps
- Vadiyalu & Curd Chilies – Few
Peel the leaf like things on the banana flower and find stems attached to the leaves. Take the stems and discard the leaves. Take each stem and observe carefully. There will be a flat and thin disc like cover which is called PILLELLU IN TELUGU. Remove the PILLELLU by plucking. Similarly find a thin stalk in the center of the stem which has a ball like sticky thing on the top. These are called DONGALLU (thieves) IN TELUGU. Remove the DONGALLU by plucking. For each stem we will find one DONGADU and one PILLEDU. Remove these two things from each stem. It is un- interesting to do this job by one person. So this job is done collectively by all family members. In olden days this job was entrusted to children. To make them do this job elders used tell them “Come let us play DONGA POLICE AATA ----Thief & Police Game”. If all the family members are involved in this job, it will be easily done.
Remove the leaves and take out the stems. And in each stem again remove the DONGADU and PILLEDU by plucking. As you go on plucking the leaves the size of the banana flower will become smaller and smaller. At this stage it will be difficult to remove the leaves. So chop that portion finely and add to the florets. At the end of this process you will find your fingers to be sticky and dark brown in color. Smear oil on both of your palms and add some salt. Now rub your palms applying force on the areas where it is dark in color. As salt is abrasive it will clean the dark spots of the banana flower. Then clean your palms with soap.
Take green gram into a bowl and wash it. Add water and soak the dal for 20 minutes.
Take banana florets into a processor bowl and add turmeric powder. Run the processor and chop them finely. Add the chopped banana florets to a bowl of water and wash them. Change water and wash the florets thoroughly for 5 to 6 times. As banana florets are bitter (HERE VAGARU) in taste we need to wash them thoroughly to remove the bitterness. So change water and wash them 5 to 6 times. After washing remove all water from the chopped florets by pressing between palms.
Take a microwave safe bowl and add the washed florets. Add 50ml water and place this bowl in a microwave oven and cover it partially. Now cook the florets on high power for 5 minutes. Remove the bowl from oven and strain the cooked florets into a strainer. Remove all water by pressing it with a spoon.
Fry the KOORA VADIYALU and curd chilies in sufficient oil till golden in color.
After 20 minutes, when the dal is soaked well, remove all the water from it.
Heat a pan and add oil to it. When oil is hot add the Bengal gram followed by black gram. Fry till the seeds start changing color. Then add mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Fry till the seeds splutter. Then add green chili-ginger paste and curry leaves. Fry the seasoning well and add the red chili powder, turmeric powder and mix well. Add cooked banana florets, soaked and drained green gram, and salt and mix well. Cover the pan and cook on low flame for one minute. Transfer the curry to a serving bowl and serve hot with plain rice and fried KOORA VADIYALU and curd chilies.
Points to Remember:
This curry will taste slightly bitter (VAGARU IN TELUGU). Some people like this VAGARU and they enjoy this curry.
Involve your family members in cleaning the banana flower.
Take care about the sticky thing coming out of the banana flower. If the sticky thing comes in contact with your clothes it will permanently remain forever. So avoid contact with the clothes you are wearing. Spread an old cloth and start removing the stalks.
I personally do not know what nutrients we get after so much of washing.
But it is absolutely necessary to wash it 5 to 6 times to remove the bitterness.
Serve this dish with fried VADIYALU and curd chilies which will add crunchy flavor to the bland taste of the curry.
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