Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Gongura Pachadi or Gongura Chutney ~ Andhra Special!

For this Weekend Herb Blogging, I am going to blog on something that's very dear to my heart and land! Gongura Pachadi or Gongura Chutney. Gongura akku as in telugu are the sour leaves known as Red Sorrel leaves, Hibiscus Cannabinus, roselle, Pulicha keerai (Tamil), Ambad bhaji, ambada, ambadi (Hindi). Gongura is a very rich source of Iron, vitamins and anti-oxidants essential for human nutrition. These are popular sour greens available in the Southern State of Andhra Pradesh, India. Red Sorrel comes in two varieties, one is green leaf and the other being red variety which is more sour than the green/white stem variety.

While it has many culinary uses, the most popular is the pickled version. Few other well known dishes that make use of Gongura are Gongura Pappu (Lentils), Gongura Pickle, Gongura mamsam (goat/mutton) and Gongura royyalu (shrimp). Apart from its source of Iron, the leaves are also known to be useful in the prevention and treatment of scurvy which is a deficiency caused by lack of vitamin C.

Today's chutney is my amma recipe, which is a class of its own. I have another chutney which is uses peanuts and equally good. But this one stays for long. The memories of this pachadi or chutney kindles childhood memories. My dad is very fond of this chutney and Amma makes sure she prepares for him frequently. Though I love this chutney, I never really learnt how to make this. Athamma makes it with Peanut and though it tastes great too, its not the same as this. And she is also fond of this variety that Amma makes. So when we got hold of a bunch, we decided that we are going to learn how to make this.


Though we don't have a garden to grow our vegetables, we proudly spot this at our backyard. The picture of the plant, was taken at my sister-in-law's place. There is nothing like plucking fresh ones for your cooking!

Ingredients Needed:

Gogura akku - 1 bundle (size can be measured by holding one bundle tightly)
Green Chillies - 11 - 12 long ones
Salt to taste

Seasoning
Mustard Seeds + Urad Dal (black gram dal) - 1/2 tsp
Dry Red chilis - 4-5 nos
Sambar Onions (Shallot) - 150 gms
Onion - 1 medium (100 gms)
Oil - 250 ml (app)

Method to prepare:

Wash and pick the leaves to remove any affected leaves. Amma is very particular about washing greens. She washes it some 3 times and then lets it soak in salt water. Let it drain in a sieve.

Take the leaves along with 11 chillies in a vessel. Add about half a cup of water and let it boil. Since the leaves let out water, you will have enough water for it to get cooked. We used about 11 chilies. Its mostly based on the sourness of the leaves.

Once its cooked, let it cool. Then grind the leaves along with the chillies. You can remove 2 of the chillies, grind the rest. Check the spicy and then add if required. Add salt. We found we needed about 11 of them. Once this is ground to a smooth paste, you can season it.


Heat a pan with oil Add the mustard and urad dal. Once it splutters, add the sambar onions, regular onions. Shallots are not chopped finely, they are just cut into halves. Sauté these to brown, along with the red chillies. Then add the ground gongura paste. Simmer and let it cook, till the oil comes out on the sides. You need to add oil, based on the texture of the chutney. Add some more if you find its not sufficient. Keep stirring and make sure the bottom is not burnt.

It takes about 15 to 20 mins for the ground paste to be fully cooked and the oil coming out. This pachadi tends to be little on the oily side as it can stay good for over a week when stored in refrigerator. We can safely store this in room temperature for 3 days. This tends more on the pickle than a pacchadi. though stays for a shorter period.

Enjoy this with hot steamed rice and Ghee! And it tastes great with Curd rice too!

Other pachadi that we make is with Ground Nuts or Peanuts, though this doesn't stay for long.

This is my entry for this week's edition of Weekend Herb Blogging hosted by Gay from A Scientist in the Kitchen, WHB, an event started by Kalyn.

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21 comments :

Arundathi said...

nice - with my new found appreciation for pulicha keerai, this recipe is right up my alley! thanks for the recipe!

Ben said...

This is a very informative post. I have never had gongura pachadi but that is something I would like to try. Thanks for sharing! :)

kamala said...

this is my fav one Valli.Drooling over urs as we dont get here.Looks yummy

Rachel said...

Never had this pachadi..so when you decide to make something auhtentic next time..you know where to send them over.

Vanamala said...

Hi valli

So nice recipe..Want to make if from since longtime but i dont know will get it here in gongura leaves. My husband's fav dish.
This is bookmarked in fav.

Uma said...

aha! fresh gongura pachadi! It has been ages I tasted it! thanks for reminding this. Yummy!

Kalai said...

I absolutely adore gongura!! Am just waiting for the weather to get better so that we can get some here. Will try this out! :)

Madhu said...

Looks delicious .

shriya said...

I heard about the gongura pachadi a lot and never get a chance to taste it. It looks mouthwatering srivalli. I am drooling over here.

Trupti said...

nice chutney srivalli

Sukanya Ramkumar said...

Hi Srivalli...
This is my fav... Looks YUM!... My mouth is watering on seeing ur picures... Nice recipe...

Divya Vikram said...

I had this during my hostel days..My andhra roommate used to bring this for me..loks too good

Mandira said...

this looks delicious, we are big fans of gongura pickle!

satya said...

Lovely pic of gongura plant Srivalli....pachchadi looks delicious....a slice of raw onion on the side is all I need to attack...:)

sra said...

My mouth's watering!

Asha said...

I have a bottled Gongura chutney, very sour!:D
Do you know Gongura is Hemp in English? Hahaha!!

Coffee & Vanilla said...

That is very interesting. I use sorrel / hibiscus to make tea but never thought of using it in savoury dishes...

http://www.coffeeandvanilla.com/?p=2036

Margot

gay said...

Sounds interesting. I've never had gongura pachadi, too.

Srivalli said...

Arundathi, you should try this out...its most excellent greens to eat this way!..esp you like tangy taste!

Ben, glad you liked it..do try if you ever get a chance..its fabulous!..

kamala, thank you..thats really bad..next time you come down..take loads of them back!...

Rachel, then next time I make it, surely send a packet to the side...:)

Mala, do try to get them..this is most awesome one...

Uma, Ah..then you must prepare this again!..nothing like enjoying it all over again right!

Kalai, all the best..I am sure this will be greatly appreciated

Madhu, thank you!

Shriya, you must taste this, if you ever get a chance..its really yummy!

Trupti, thank you!

Sukanya, glad you liked it!...

Divya, ehhmm..good...glad you have tasted this!

Mandira, glad to know that...am sure you must be making these too!

satya, thank you...yeah thats what Athamma said too...forgot to put that in the picture

sra, glad!

Asha, hahha..yeah the best!...seriously???..hahahah

Margot, thats something I got to check out..will be interesting to make!...do try to make the chutney if you can...its yummy!

gay, if you ever chance by, I advise you try it out...

Kalyn said...

So interesting, would love to taste it!

lzyjo said...

I made gongura chutney for the first time a few weeks ago. It was so good, I can't get the flavor out of my mind. I didn't use onion, but I will try your recipe next time.

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