Tuesday, April 16, 2013

STUFFED CAPSICUM

STUFFED CAPSICUM

A favourite in my family is Stuffed Capsicum ( also called Simla Mirch locally), which goes well as a side dish when served with rice and a curry. Although it is a dry dish, it can also be had with rotis or chappatis.

As those of you in North America would probably know, capsicum is what we in India call what you refer to as "Bell Pepper" which is available in different colours.

In this version, I have used the most commonly available green capsicum but if you want to jazz up this dish, you might like to have an assortment of capsicum in red, yellow as well as green. This considerably brightens up the dish and gives it a very different presentation.

Ingredients:
  • Large Capsicums, 6
  • Green Peas, cooked, 1/2 cup
  • Potatoes 4
  • Onions, medium sized, chopped 1-2
  • Chilly powder, 1 tsp
  • Garam Masala Powder, 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander Powder, 1 1/2 tsp
  • Tamarind extract, 1 tbsp
  • Cumin Seeds  (Jeera) 1/2 tsp
  • Oil, 3 tbsp
  • Salt to taste

Method: 

Wash the capsicums, cut them into half and de-seed them. Keep these capsicum 'jackets' aside.
Cook the potatoes, peel and mash them

Chop the onions finely 
Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a thick-bottomed kadhai, add cumin seeds and when it gets roasted add onions and fry them till they are golden. 
Lower the heat, add turmeric powder, chilly powder, coriander powder, and garam masala and fry for 1/2 minute
Now add the mashed potatoes, cooked peas, tamarind extract, and salt to taste. 
Cook this for 2-3 minutes and take it off the flame. Allow it to cool.
This forms the stuffing for the capsicum 



Fill the capsicum jackets with the stuffing mentioned above. Take care not to over stuff them. Pack the stuffing tightly in the capsicum jackets, so that it doesn't easily roll out.





Heat the remaining oil in the kadhai. Slip in the stuffed jackets of capsicum
Cook on medium flame by keeping them covered
When the bottom of the capsicums gets done, carefully turn them to their sides so as to have them evenly cooked

Serve hot as a side dish with rice and curry. We Konkanis believe stuffed capsicum tastes superb with our famous "dhalitoi."




Hints: 
  • You can use 1/2 tsp of amchoor ( dry mango) powder instead of tamarind extract, should you wish to.
  • While adding roasted onions to the stuffing enhances the taste, if you wish to save time, add chopped onions as an alternative.
  • If some of the stuffing falls out of the jacket while it is being cooked, that's fine as this too tastes quite delicious when it gets roasted.