Yamuna Devi Recipe from the archives: Deep-Fried Stuffed Hot Green Chilies (Hari Mirchi Bhaji)

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Yet more serialising of recipes by my cooking guru, Yamuna Devi! Before attempting to cook any of her recipes, make sure you are aware of the difference between US measures and Australian/metric measures. See below*

Fresh hot green jalapenos, averaging 2½ inches (6.5 cm) long and 1 inch (2.5 cm) wide, are available in most areas. If their skin has begun to turn red but is still shiny and firm, they are still quite usable. Smaller chilies are inevitably the hottest, especially serranos, but they are next to impossible to seed and stuff.

Use jalapenos or the conical fresnos (usually limited to California markets). Srila Prabhupada once commented to his servant-cook Srutakirti das. “Chili pakoras and fried chilies are cooling in hot climates; they actually reduce the body temperature”.

They are also recognized as appetite stimulators by inhabitants of the tropics. If you fancy hot foods, by all means give this dish a try on a full Vedic menu. Warn the unseasoned newcomer, and, depending on personal tolerance, allow 1 or 2 per person.

Preparation time: 15 minutes,
Cooking time: 10 minutes,
Makes: 12 chilies.

12 hot green jalapeno chilies, each about 2 ½ inches (6.5 cm) long,
½ teaspoon ground mustard,
½ teaspoon turmeric,
¼ teaspoon salt,
¼ teaspoon cumin,
¼ teaspoon garam masala,
1 tablespoon chickpea flour,
about 1 tablespoon plain yogurt,
1 cup ghee or vegetable oil for deep-frying.

Wash the chilies and pat them dry. With a sharp paring knife, make a cut from the top to the bottom of each chili, cutting halfway through. Carefully pry out the seeds and membrane, then wash the cavity under running water and pat dry.

Combine the mustard, turmeric, salt, cumin, garam masala, chickpea flour and enough yogurt to make a paste. Mix well. Spread the paste evenly into the cavity of each chili.

Heat the ghee or oil in a 1-quart/liter saucepan over high heat until it reaches 360 F (180 C) on a deep-frying thermometer. Fry the chilies 4 at a time for 2-3 minutes or until they blister and turn brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.

*Note that since Yamuna wrote her recipes using US measurements, the weights are in US with metric in brackets.

More importantly, her tablespoons are US (15ml) whereas Australian/metric tablespoons are 20ml. So if you follow these recipes using metric measures, your tablespoons should be scant.

Similarly, the US cup is 240ml as distinct from the Australian/metric 250ml cup. The same scant measuring should thus apply to Australian/metric cup users.

The teaspoon is a universal 5ml.

Posted by Kurma on 15/11/11; 7:42:51 AM

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