Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Capsicum Zunka ~ Simla Mirch ki sabzi ~ Green bell pepper curry

Zunka as I mentioned in this post is a kind of curry that is made with veggies and chick pea flour/ besan and is from Maharastra ( a state in the western region of India). When I was living in Bombay and we moved to a suburb there, I was fascinated by the sheer number of small chapathi bhaji shops in our new locality.  Chapathi = Indian flat bread and Bhaji = curry in Marathi ( the language spoken in that region)

The variety of curries offered there were fun to try and I was introduced to a lot of Maharashtrian curries during that time. One curry that was consistently offered in almost all of these stores was Zunka. And from the first time I tried it I have loved this curry and now make it at home regularly.  This is a quick, easy curry that tastes great with phulkas/ flat bread and is ready in very little time making it ideal for weeknight dinners or when you are looking to rustle up something healthy and tasty in little time:)

Click here for the printable version of this recipe

Ingredients and method to make bell pepper curry
3 large green bell peppers / capsicum/ Simla mirch / koda molagai deseeded and cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1 large red onion cut fine (pyaaz/ vengayam)
1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp chick pea flour ( besan/ kadalai maavu)
2 garlic cloves cut very fine (lehsun/ poondu)
1 1/2 Tbsp + 1 Tbsp oil
3/4 tsp mustard seeds ( rai/ kadagu)
3/4 tsp cumin seeds ( jeera/ jeeragam)
1/4 tsp turmeric powder ( haldi)
salt to taste
3/4 tsp red chili powder ( lal mirch) or to taste
1/2 tsp coriander powder ( dhania pwd) ( optional)

Place a heavy bottomed pan on low to medium low heat, add 1 and 1/2 Tbsp oil and chick pea flour / besan to it and roast the flour until it emits an aroma. Take your time with this step, stir frequently so that the flour does not burn and remove from heat and keep aside when done.

Prep all the vegetables. In the same pan heat remaining 1 Tbsp of oil. Add mustard seeds to it, when the seeds begin to splutter add cumin seeds. When cumin sizzles, add garlic and stir until garlic begins to get creamy brown.

Add onions and sauté until onions turn translucent. Add turmeric powder and stir a couple of times. 

Add bell pepper/ capsicum, salt to taste, chili powder, coriander powder and stir until the capsicum is tender crisp.  Do not cover the pan with a lid while the bell pepper is cooking. Once bell pepper is cooked soft yet firm lower heat to low and add roasted flour to it a little at a time, stirring frequently.  Allow the curry to heat for a couple of minutes for the flavors to mingle, continue to stir frequently while the curry heats.

Remove the curry from heat and serve with  bhakri/ phulkas/ chapathis / rotis/ flat bread. 
Serves approx 2 to 3 

If you are looking for green bell pepper/ capsicum/ simla mirch recipes, here for a few more

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