There are numerous avatars of Pithalays. Most common Maharashtrian pithalay looks yellow. I love pithalay with garlic and drumsticks in it. I have tasted Pithalay made from Kulith flour (Horsegram beans) too. Tomato pithalay looks more reddish. The Maharashtrian cooking bible "Ruchira" has given at least a dozen different recipes for pithalay including adding milk and yogurt instead of water for the creamier taste. But today I am writing the simple recipe of very easy Pithalay the way I make at home.
Pithalay (Serves 4)
1 cup besan
3/4 cup water + 2 tbsp water
salt to taste
1 tbsp oil
4 cloves of garlic, sliced or smashed leaving entire garlic in tact
7-8 pieces of drumsticks (shevgyachya shenga)
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
You will also need
1 tbsp cilantro/coriander leaves, finely chopped
0. Whisk chickpea flour, water and salt till there are no lumps. Set aside.
1. Heat oil. Add mustard seeds, asafoetida and turmeric powder. When it sizzles, add garlic and saute till garlic turns a sahde darker.
2. Add drumsticks and 2 tbsp water. Cover and cook till drumsticks are soft. Add some salt to taste - remember we have already added salt to the chickpea mixture. So adjust accordingly.
3. Lower the flame. Stir besan mixture one more time and pour gently while stirring continuously with other hand. Keep stirring till the pithale reaches semi-set pudding consistency.
6. Garnish with cilantro.
7. Serve hot with Bhakri (or pita) or Rice with raw onions on the side.
Note - Pithalay gets ready very soon. You have to eat it immediately because as time goes by, it becomes thicker and it will be a disaster to eat cold, dry and thick pithalay.