Monday, March 30, 2009

Nutty Hash Browns or Batatyacha Kees?

Batatyacha Kees is a classic Maharashtrian farali or upwas dish. It can be cooked even more quickly if you discover a packet of frozen hash browns in your freezer. Yes, I checked the date. It wasn't ancient, so it wasn't really an archaeological find from my freezer but just a forgotten packet screaming to be used up!!:-D

Batatyacha Kees
Seasoned Hash Browns
1 packet (16 oz) hash browns, frozen
salt to taste
1/2 tsp sugar
1/4 cup roasted, unsalted peanuts, crushed
1 tbsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed

2 tsp oil or ghee
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 green chili, minced or chopped
1 tsp ginger, minced or grated

1 tbsp cilantro/coriander leaves (optional)
1 tbsp fresh coconut

Suggested accompaniment
Sweetened yogurt (plain yogurt + sugar + salt)
plain yogurt
Upwasachi chutney (Recipe coming soon)

1. Heat oil or ghee in a nonstick wok.

2. Add all the ingredients for tempering. As the cumin seeds sizzle, add frozen hash browns.

3. Keep the gas high. Using the wooden spoon, try to break the frozen hash browns. Stir till they appear to be thawed.

4. Now stir in peanut powder, salt and sugar. Saute for 1 minute. Drizzle 1 tbsp water. Cover and let it cook for 5 minutes or till it is heated through.

5. Stir in lemon juice. Cook for 2 more minutes. Switch off the gas. Cover and let it stand for 5 minutes.

6. Garnish with coconut & cilantro - if using

Note -
1. I used Whole Foods brand of hash browns which was nothing but grated potatoes, lumped together due to freezing. It didn't have any salt so I had to add the salt. Check for the list of ingredients on the hash browns packet to make sure if it has salt or not. Adjust salt accordingly.

2. You can also use grated, peeled raw potatoes and follow the above recipe. In that case, you may have to keep a lid with water on top to cook the potatoes.

3. While sauteing the grated potatoes or hash browns, make sure that the potato strands are not broken or mashed.

4. Use a wide nonstick wok so the frozen hash browns are kept in a single layer, which will be easier to thaw.


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