If you want to experience the real power of vegan cooking, visit India!
A country where top industrialists host purely vegetarian dishes at the most exotic dinner parties, vegetarians are no longer the poor cousins. Vegetarian food is simply not just about cooking potatoes and carrots.
Apparently, Indian women are not cookbook chefs; recipes are discussed, the ingredients are decided upon and recipes are evolved. Every home has its own version of common Indian recipes, many times, totally vegan.
Let’s take a peep into an Indian Vegetarian Kitchen.
The first thing that will catch your attention is the box full of aromatic spices. Bay leaves, turmeric, dry coriander powder, cumin, whole and ground dried red chillies, fenugreek and dry mango powder. Each spice adds a unique flavour to food and even leaves of herbs like coriander, mint and fenugreek are used for seasoning and garnishing the dishes.
The garam masala finds a special place in Indian cooking and tastes best when dried, grounded and prepared at home. It’s a fine blend of spices like Cinnamon, Cumin, Cloves, Cardamom, Bay Leaves, Star Anise, and many more exotic flavours.
Snacks and main dishes
India revels in its bhajjias, pakoras, tikkis, and samosas. These deep fried snacks are enjoyed in the morning or as tea-time snacks. For the more conscious ones, baked and roasted versions of the dishes are also prepared. Salads are also served, again seasoned with salt, lemon, pepper and sometimes chillies.
The main course is a well-cooked meal comprising of a quintessential curry (sometimes more than one), some dry vegetables and bread or rice. Here again, spices are added to make the dishes delicious. You can find all kinds of flavours in a classic vegetarian Indian platter- sweet, salty, spicy and tangy.
Mixed vegetable Bhaji Recipe
- 2 cups medium sliced vegetables - potato, carrots, beans, capsicum, cauliflower, peas, and more
- 3 Tbsp oil
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
- 1 onion thinly sliced
- 2 sliced tomatoes
- Chilli powder
- ¼ tsp turmeric powder
- ½ tsp garam masala
- Coriander leaves for garnishing
- Boil all the vegetables in a pressure cooker, they should be tender soft.
- Heat a wok, add the oil and once heated, add the cumin seeds.
- Once it splutters, add the onion and fry for two minutes.
- Add the tomatoes, salt, turmeric, chilli powder, ginger garlic paste and fry for a few minutes.
- Now add all the vegetables and cook for another two minutes. Add the garam masala.
- Garnish with coriander leaves and serve with chapatti or rice