Saturday, January 24, 2009

matar ka nimona | a soupy spicy curry with liquidized green peas

Matar ka nimona is a favorite recipe of all the matar (green peas) lovers and the best taste comes in winters when farm fresh peas are available. Frozen peas are somehow not as good, though they can be used as a substitute, what is good when we use fresh peas is that the flavor is so rich that minimum seasoning is needed and the taste is beyond comparison. Whenever I use the frozen peas, I make it using onion-garlic and a bit more garam masala, so this one turns out a spicy recipe and goes well with rice or chapati. I am giving both the recipes here as both of them are different in taste and preparation.

I would tell you what a matar ka nimona is, as the name is quite unusual and it doesn't sound like a curry that it really is. I eastern UP, any curry that is cooked with a lentil paste (preferably fresh seasonal green lentils) to make a thick daal like gravy is called Nimona. So we make Harey chane (green garbanzo beans) ka nimona, kale chane ka nimona, mung ka nimona and so on. Some people even make a palak ka nimona that is simply a paste of steamed spinach leaves that makes the curry thick and creamy, some fried lentil dumplings, green peas and seasonal vegetables like cauliflowers or beans  are added to this palak ka nimona.

Now over to the Nimona cooked with fresh green peas...


ingredients (using fresh peas)
fresh peas 1 cup
desi ghee 2 tbsp
black pepper powder 1 tsp
jeera powder 1tsp
ginger chopped 1 tbsp or more
green chillies chopped 1 tbsp
whole jeera 1 tsp
tejpatta or bay leaf 1
salt to taste

procedure

first of all put the peas, ginger n green chillies in a grinder without water and make a coarse paste so that some of the peas are left whole.......keep aside.
heat ghee in a non stick pan or a cast iron one, put in whole jeera n tejpatta..........then add the ground peas paste when the jeera splutters, fry this on low heat for 5-6 mins, then add the powders, i don't use haldi so that a rich green clolor comes,it is optional.
add salt and keep frying on low heat until a nice aroma mixed with the smell of ghee starts coming.....add 2 cups of water........less water if thick consistency is needed, cover the pan and give it a boil, it is ready after 2 minutes.........garnish with chopped coriander leaves n serve hot.

the aroma and taste is so amazing that nobody can guess it is so simple to make, moreover, a minimum amount of masalas allows the flavour of the peas to take over..........awesome.

since there is no onion, garlic in this recipe it can be eaten on fasting days when evening meals are allowed.

i am on a low fat diet these days so the picture of this recipe shall come after a while.


ingredients ( for the frozen peas)

frozen peas 1 cup
onions chopped 2 tbsp
ginger, garlic n green chilly (equal amounts) paste 2 tbsp
tomato paste 2 tbsp
whole jeera 1 tsp
coriander, jeera, black pepper and garan masala powder 1 tsp each
haldi powder 1 tsp
salt to taste
coriander leaves 2 tbsp
bay leaf 1
desi ghee 2-3 tbsp
boiled potatoes cubed 1/2 cup or soya nuggets soaked and sqeased 1/2 cup or paneer 1/2 cup or dry mung daal wadi fried 1/2 cup


procedure

grind the peas coarsely as the above recipe and keep aside.
heat ghee in a pan and put in the jeera n tejpatta and let it splutter, now put in the onions n fry till translucent............add the ginger garlic chilly paste and fry till ghee separates, now add the powder masalas and fry till aromatic and finally add the tomato paste n salt, add the potato pieces at this time.........if not using potatoes , other ingredients will be added later..........fry a bit and add the peas paste.......keep frying for 3-4 minutes ...add 2 cups water and soya nuggets or paneer or fried mung wadi, cover and cook till done or when ghee comes on top, garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot.

Edited to add : another matar ka nimona with mungodi (fried mung dumplings) can be seen here.
                       and another delicately spiced version here 

19 comments:

  1. First time visitor....Recipe sounds new to me....Looks yum.

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  2. I am from U.P and and nimona chawal is one of my fav dish,my mum used to make it, loved it in winters.

    its true you can't get the real taste from frozen peas as fresh peas are hard to get abroad,

    thanks for sharing the variations of nimona.

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    1. I know hoe UP people love this nimona, I like it with chapatis too.
      Thanks Anonymous, let me know if you cook the recipes.

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  3. i am frm banaras n i just love nimona chawal....

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  4. I am from Andhra but my husband is from UP. I have made this today. Hope he likes it.

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    1. Would like to know how you all liked it :-)

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  5. I am amazed to see Banaras ka khana !! WOW my benaras food is so famous to have a site of itself !! I have always missed the food of benaras since i left it /..be it Kachori sabzi and jalebi of chowk / mint house in morning or small aloo kachori of maidagin or pizza of pizzaria ...

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    1. Thanks Mudita. I am so glad you liked the blog :-)
      Yes, Banaras is the best place to enjoy street food, even the home cooked food in most homes has some elements of street food there :-)

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  6. Awesome....
    Thanks for the recipe ...One of the best lunch in winter season

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  7. Most people in Banaras add Cauliflower and Potatoes to Nimona!Love it with dollops of ghee and hot steaming rice!!Thanks for posting the recipe.

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  8. Welcome to my blog DC. Yes I had forgot that, thanks for reminding..may be I'll make it with gobi and aloo withing a few days. My mom used to add gobi aloo to nimona.

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  9. delicious & easy to prepare light food. even a working man can prepare.


    Alok Bhardwaj

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    1. Thank you Alok. This is the best complement for this recipe or any other I have got till date :-)

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  10. I just loveeeeeeee nimona chawal. As i am from UP(allahabad) but my husband is sindhi. it makes me remember my mom's nimona. She cooks it just amazing. Thanks for the recipe. Love it in Winters.

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  11. I just loveeeeeeee nimona chawal. As i am from UP(allahabad) but my husband is sindhi. it makes me remember my mom's nimona. She cooks it just amazing. Thanks for the recipe. Love it in Winters.

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  12. I just love Nimona with chapati and steamed rice.Its my one of the favorite food.

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  13. Loved it. I have linked what I made to your place. Thanks we loved it. Its a new thing to us but it will go to be a regular at home.

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  14. Love your blog and the wonderful collection of Banarasi recipes among others :-) I made this nimona today, with a mix of green peas and hara chana. It's such a simple but delicious dish! As as aside, while I was scouring the internet for additional nimona recipes, I came across "Namita's Kitchen" - she has used some of your introductory text on nimona verbatim, with no mention that she's taken it directly from your blog! Such blatant plagiarism infuriates me, and I just wanted to let you know in case you feel like addressing this with the author of Namita's Kitchen...

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    1. Thanks for the appreciation and for the alert as well Payal. I am so used to this plagiarisation that it doesn't surprise me at all now. What to do?

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