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The Desi Lima

I live next to the biggest grocery store in Mumbai. And because "Hypercity" has pretty much every hard to find exotic ingredient you can buy in India, I rarely venture elsewhere. Except I was out shopping and landed up in Food Bazaar last weekend. What a shock it was! There was this whole section of stuff I never thought you could buy - Tamilian style chillies dried in yogurt, idli podi, garlic chutney powder, dried lemon pickle and lots of other stuff I can't name.

And then, the vegetable section was another shocker. I found green wheat, folks! Another excellent addition to my salads was ragi sprouts, something I never knew existed. But my proudest buy that day was a pack of green lima beans. I love beans and this is one kind I have never tasted before, fresh or dried. Clearly, I was in awe of my shopping.

Except my cook had one look at my fresh lima beans and told me bluntly that it's something I could have bought very easily if I'd been looking at the grocery shelves more carefully. She then proceeded to tell me not to bother with a recipe as this is something she makes at home all the time. And off she went to make her very desi lima bean masala. Here's her very delicious recipe if you find some green lima beans wherever you are.

Peel and coarsely chop a large onion, then grind to a paste. Blanch, peel and puree two tomatoes. In a pan, heat a tbsp of ghee. Add 1/2 tsp cumin seeds and wait for them to splutter. Add the onion paste and stir fry on a medium heat until the onions are lightly browned, very fragrant and the ghee starts to separate. Add 1/2 tsp turmeric and after a few seconds, add the tomato puree. Stir fry until the mixture is almost dry, then add green lima beans (i had about a cup of those), salt and 1/4 tsp red chilli powder. Add enough water to cover the beans, bring to a boil and let simmer until the beans are tender. It takes about 20-30 minutes this way, but you can always speed up the process with a pressure cooker.


Siri said…
I love lima beans especially the fresh ones..very desi curry as you said..;)

Curry Leaf said…
I agree with your cook :D.but the curry is surely desi and new to me.Never tried them this way.
Yes! these are indeed available in the dried form quite easily (called vaal). I'm yet to understand the difference betweeen lima and fava beans though..
shanthi said…
This is awesome and mouthwatering. Do visit my blog when time permits.
Linhy said…
Looks good!! become my follower!

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