This Dish is almost a must in Big Vegetarian Dinners and Feasts, with big menus, and is usually cooked in an earthenware pot (K- ‘Deg’). Generally, one piece with a spoonful of the Curdy Gravy, is served to each guest. It is also prepared in an earthenware smaller pot, a ‘Leij’, or in a steel ‘Patila’, for Dometic Meals. Each person takes 3 or 4 pieces, with a liberal serving of its delicious Gravy, with Plain Cooked Rice.
Note :- A stalk of Lotus Roots is called a ‘Nadur’ in Kashmir, and more than one stalk ‘Nadeir’.
1. Lotus Roots, of above 1″ diameter – 1 kg
2. Mustard oil – 1 cup
3. Curd – 1 kg
4. Milk – 1 cup
5. Cloves – 3 nos
6. Cumin Seeds – 1 tsp
7. Asafoetida – a pinch
8. Ginger Powder – 1 tsp
9. Aniseed Powder – 2 tsps
10. Black Pepper Powder – 1 tsp
11. Black Cardamom Powder – 1/2 tsp
12. Cinnamon Powder – 1/2 tsp
13. Caraway seeds – 1/2 tsp
14. ‘Garam Masala’ – 1 tsp
15. Salt – about 1 tsp
16. Sugar – 1/2 tsp
17. Green Cardamoms – a few
Scrape the Lotus Roots with a knife and cut off root heads, and any bad ends of the stalks. Cut horizontally, into about 2″ pieces. Wash thoroughly to clean the outside, and remove mud etc. from the holes of the pieces.
Method of Cooking
- In an earthenware pot (‘Leij’), or in a steel or tinned copper or brass ‘Patila’, boil, for half an hour, the prepared Lotus Root pieces, in enough water to keep these immersed wholly during boiling. To save time, only 5 to 10 minutes of pressure cooking is enough. Take out with a perforated ladle or strain through a colander, the boiled pieces, and retain the Soup in a steel bowl, and let it cool.
- Add to the Soup the Curd, Milk, Aniseed and Ginger Powders, Sugar and Salt, and blend the ingredients, by churning with a small churn–stick (H- ‘Biloni), to a Curdy Sauce.
- Now, in the cooking vessel, heat the oil on a medium flame, till foam disappears. Add the Cloves, Cumin Seeds and Asafoetida. Stir with a steel ladle, and add immediately the prepared Sauce. Continue stirring with the steel ladle, so that Curd does not crack, till the Sauce comes to a boil.
- Add boiled Lotus Root pieces, and let these cook on a low heat, for another 15 to 20 minutes, turning these now and then with the ladle. When the Curdy Gravy thickens, add Caraway Seeds and Cardamom, Cinnamon and Black Pepper Powders, along with the ‘Garam Masala’. Mix the Spices by stirring with the ladle. A few crushed Green Cardamoms may be added. ‘Nadier Yakhean’ is ready for serving.