Monday, 2 February 2015

Ajwain wali Gajar

With Winter bidding adieu, I was suddenly reminded of this recipe made by my Grandmother which she very lovingly prepared for the family. Beji, as we called her, was full of warmth and love and her sole mission was to feed her family very well. She was a wizard in the kitchen and would make sure not to waste anything. She had tonnes of patience to prepare everything from scratch and serve food fresh and hot. 
As a child I have memories of a small manji(cot) being laid in the sun which was used to dry the washed grains of wheat. Beji would get them ground to atta from the local chakki for rotis and all sorts of paranthas. I have no memory of her sitting idle. She was always found busy with something or the other. I remember her telling me stories of how she would knit sweaters at night so that the neighbour ladies would not copy the pattern. Stitching, knitting, cooking, she had the time and love for it all. 
She had the same consistent energy even after a shoulder dislocation. I remember with that stiff shoulder she still managed to do so many things. Her gentle face was always adorned with a sweet smile. She was truly my superwoman. 
Ajwain wali Gajar was my Beji's recipe which was served with soft Paranthas or as she would call 'Polae polae paronthe' as they were made with desi ghee. This recipe has no onion, garlic or tomato, the otherwise pillars of Punjabi cuisine. The sweetness and juiciness of the winter carrots along with the bitterness of the ajwain gives an amazing flavour to the dish. 
My Beji is no more but she is alive in my memories. Food is such a beautiful medium to keep stories alive.
Beji continues to live amongst us with her recipes. 
Last year I had shared my Beji's Matar ke chilke ki sabzi and pakode which will soon get featured on Rocky and Mayur's new food show.Will keep you all updated about it. 
As for now, while the winter carrots are still available in the market, do try my Beji's recipe.

Ingredients : For 2 servings
  • 4-5 medium sized Gajar/carrots (Winter carrots are best)
  • 2 tsp ajwain/Carom seeds
  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 1/4 tsp haldi/turmeric powder
  • salt to taste
Procedure : 
Peel and wash carrots and chop them in small cubes. 
(The only time consuming part of the recipe)

Take ghee in a kadai/ deep pan and add the chopped carrots.
Cook the carrots on low flame. It should take about 5-8 minutes for the carrots to cook.
Add salt and turmeric powder and mix well.
Add ajwain and mix and remove from flame. 
Serve with paranthas/rotis and with some raita.

Happy Carrot Indulging

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