Ghugni – A spicy Yellow Peas curry

Ghugni is a bengali dish which is often served for breakfast or as a snack. It is usually served with a butter toast. I even have it for dinner sometimes with Paratha. I don’t believe in labelling a food as a breakfast or a dinner dish, mostly for my own advantage.

This is a vegetarian dish, vegan as well. The main ingredient is yellow peas from the legume family that is cooked in spices and with potato. Well potato is an essential part of Bengali cuisine and we feel the obligation to include it in everything.

Here’s the recipe for this dish.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup dried yellow peas, soaked for at least 12 hours
  • 1 large potato, cubed
  • 1 large onion, thinly slices
  • 1 medium tomato, cubed
  • 1 tbsp ginger paste
  • Bay leaf, 2 pieces
  • Dried red chilly, 2 pieces
  • 4-5 cloves
  • 1 tsp whole cumin
  • 1 tbsp turmeric powder
  • T tsp Cumin powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • 1 green chilly, sliced
  • 2 tbsp oil, preferably mustard oil
  • 1 tsp ghee
  • Lemon juice
  • Chaat masala
  • Coconut, 2 tbsp, thinly sliced
  • Water to boil
  • Salt
  • Sugar, a pinch

METHOD

  1. In a large pot, add 3 cups of water and the soaked peas with 1 tbsp of salt. Bring it boil till the peas are soft but remains unbroken.
  2. In a pan, heat mustard oil and add bay leaf, dried red chilies, cloves and whole cumin. Once the whole spices are crackling, add the onion. Cook it until it turns lightly golden and add the ginger paste. Cook it for another minute. In a bowl mix all the powdered spices excluding garam masala and mix with 2 tbsp water. Add the spice mixture to the pan and let the spices cook till it release oil. Now add the cubed potatoes and cook for 3-4 minutes. the add the tomatoes. Cook until the tomato is mushy.
  3. Now add the boiled yellow peas and reverse the water. Let the yellow peas mix with the spices for 2-3 minutes. Then add the reserved water to it. Put a lid on the pan and let it cook for 5-10 minutes. Check and stir occasionally.
  4. In the mean time, heat up the ghee and lightly brown the coconut pieces.
  5. Ghugni usually doesn’t have much gravy in it. So once the water is almost evaporated, add the garam masala and fried coconuts with the ghee. Add a pinch of sugar. Give it a nice mix. Check for salt and add more if required. Switch off the gas.
  6. While serving, add some more chopped onions, green chilly slices, lemon juice and chaat masala on top. Serve hot.

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