Friday, February 15, 2008

Kutchi Beer/Masala Chhas

It was a hot summer afternoon. After playing for a while on the playground, all of us cousins were busy running up to my mavshi's (mom's sister) home for a drink of water."How about a peg of Kutchi Beer for you all?" When our teetotaler and vegetarian Gujarati Masaji (mavshi's husband/maternal uncle) asked all of us cousins, we were startled and worried about him. Frankly, we were expecting a royal scolding for playing in the hot sun and not a peg of some beer!

He called our mavshi, and she too brought tall, steel glasses in a tray. "Cheers!" Masaji and mavshi said cheerfully. and all of us kids were flabbergasted. "Have they gone nuts?" .Then we peeked in - it was masala chhaas/buttermilk/maththa! which is also known as "Kutchi Beer"!! Sigh of relief and laughter followed!:-)

This masala chaas or Kutchi beer is made two ways. It can be delicately flavored by just surati jeeralu or to further enhance the flavor, it also can be given tadka (vaghar/fodni/tempering/chonk) of mustard seeds, asafoetida and cumin seeds.

For more information about Kutch, click here.

Kutchi Beer /Masala Chhas
4 cups Buttermilk
Salt to taste
sugar to taste
A generous pinch of Surti Jeeralu
1/2 tsp ginger+green chili paste or chopped
1 tsp chopped cilantro/coriander leaves (optional)

Tempering (Optional)
1 tsp oil or ghee
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp asafortida

1. Mix all the ingredients
2. Add tempering, if using.

1. I added red, fresh chili just to add contrast in my picture above. It is not mandatory.
2. If you do not prefer chopped chilies/cilantro/ginger in the buttermilk, add the ground paste. But that version will be spicier.

This post is my contribution to RCI: Gujarat at Mythili's.
RCI is brainchild of
Lakshmi of Veggiecuisine.


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