Not in my wildest dream, - Yes! I dream about food!;-) - I had ever thought that I would see purple carrots in this life time, that too, of all the places in the United States. I had seen this unique Punjabi recipe called "Kanji" using black/purple carrots @Sanjeev Kapoor's website. I was intrigued as I had never seen these colorful carrots ever in Mumbai markets. Also, Kanji means something totally different where I come from. It's just another name for "Pej" - starchy rice water broth. But Sanjeev Kapoor's Kanji was more like a fermented drink involving purple/black carrots.
Well, as soon as I spied purple carrots at our local Sprouts, I knew I was going to make this Punjabi Kanji. I used Sanjeev Kapoor's recipe for reference and also added Himalayan Pink Salt (because I had it and hence, I am going through this Himalayan Pink salt phase!). I also added 2 Guntur chilies whole, thinking it may perk up the drink.
This drink gets beautiful color due to anti-oxidant rich purple carrots. By the end of 2-3 days of sunny window treatment, the drink turns shocking pink. You may mistake it for Kokum Drink. Carrots get completely drained out of their vibrant color and turn into mere orange. Now, I must caution you, that it could be an acquired taste for people who have not tried it ever. But you will certainly be won over by its color.
While I was raving and writing about these purple carrots, Gudiya stopped by and she shared the trivia of the day. It seems, all carrots were originally purple and orange carrots were cultivated much later. She'd read it in her school library. I googled it and found it to be true!
Kale Gajar Ki Kanji
2 Purple Carrots, peeled, cut into sticks
700 ml filtered water
1 tsp Pink Himalayan salt (or any salt)
2 Guntur Chilies, whole
A pinch of black pepper powder
1. Rinse and peel carrots. Cut into sticks.
3. Pour remaining spices and water.
4. Stir. Put a muslin cloth and tie it.
5. Keep on a sunny window for 2-3 days till it's vibrant shocking pink.
6. Consume immediately.
1. Refrigerate any unused drink and consume within 3-4 fays.
2. This drink may need an acquired taste.
3. I didn't add beetroot as Mr. Kapoor suggests in his recipe.