Tuesday, March 17, 2015

TENDLE TALASANI: A STIR FRY OF WHOLE GHERKINS

TENDLE TALASANI: A STIR FRY OF WHOLE GHERKINS

I share today one of my favourite Konkani recipes, that of "Tendle Talasani." Tendle is the Konkani word for Ivy Gourd/Gherkins, which is called Thondaikai in Kannada, Tindora in Hindi and Tondli in Marathi. A "talasani" is a stir fry in which no water is used and the vegetable is cooked in oil.

The secret of making a good Tendle Talasini is to choose tender ones and discard those which are even slightly ripe. Also, you should slightly crush the whole gherkins without breaking them up or smashing them to a pulp. This helps them absorb salt and garlic and adds to the flavour and taste of the dish. I still continue the age old practice of lightly crushing the tendle individually by using a mortar and pestle.  There is no need to add any water as the talasani tastes best when cooked wholly in oil.




Ingredients:

  • Ivy Gourd/Gherkins/Tendle, 2 cups
  • Red Chillies, broken into two pieces, 3-4
  • Garlic pods, crushed, 10-12
  • Oil, 1 to 1 and 1/2 tbsp
  • Salt, to taste
Method:

First, wash the tendle thoroughly then snip off the two ends
Lightly crush the tendle by using a mortar and pestle or a rounded stone. The secret is to crush them whole without smashing them to a pulp.
Apply salt to the tendle and set aside for about 20 minutes
Squeeze out the tendle  as the salt applied to it leaves a little water. Keep aside.
Heat oil in a kadhai and when it gets heated, add the crushed garlic pods
Allow them to fry and when they turn golden and you get a good aroma, add the broken red chillies.
Fry till the chillies are crisp
Now add the marinated tendle  and cook on medium heat keeping the dish covered
From time to time, stir the tendle
Once the tendles are cooked, remove the cover, check for salt  and add salt only if required
Allow it cook for some more time till the tendle get evenly roasted
I prefer to cook them a little longer as we like to have the tendle well roasted.