Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Malai Mushroom

There was this Anupama Restaurant in Hotel Usha, Balmatta Road Mangalore where I used to frequent with my friends in the Eighties and the Nineties. They had a dish named Chicken White. They meant Chicken White Korma. It had a very subtle flavor of spices with a semi thick whitish gravy that tasted ultimate with Ceylon Parotas.

I tried to get the recipe for that but the partner, my close friend said he was helpless, since the admin chef knew the secret of most of the dishes. I didn't go further.

Then again, I tasted the mushroom masala at Tajmahal Restaurant in Hampankatta which had similar whitish gravy. Someone told me, they add ground white sesame seeds to achieve that flavour, colour and consistency. I didn't believe that, though a slight hint of sesame oil flavour was contained in that Mushroom Masala!

After a few years, when I got a grip on North Indian cooking especially Mughalai dishes following a few recipes from Femina magazine, I realised that this white gravy is a combo of cashewnut paste and thick cream!

First I wanted to experiment with Mushrooms, as Chicken was way too expensive those days compared to Mushrooms. I got a 200Gm pack of fresh Mushrooms from a nearby store and kept it in the fridge. Meena helped me with the preparation, making some pastes and keeping the spices and things ready by the gas stove.

Voila! Malai Mushroom was born in Kudpiraj's kitchen in the year 1994! I imagined how that dish can be made and till date, we have prepared this many times, once at a dinner party in 1995 where over 20 guests attended!

This is a run away success story about one dish that I prepared using my imagination. There are many to follow. All age group people love this one.

Fresh/Tinned Mushrooms without brine - 200Gms
Brown Onion Paste - 2 Tablespoons(2 big Onions sliced, shallow fried with oil till brown and ground to a paste)
Ginger Garlic Paste - 1 Tsp
Kasoori Methi - 1 Tsp
White Pepper Powder - 2 Tsp
Cumin Powder - 1/2 Tsp
Coriander Powder - 1/2 Tsp
Sugar - 1 Tsp
Garam Masala Powder - 1 Tsp
Cashewnut Paste - 2 Tbsp(25Gm cashew bits soaked in warm water and ground to a thick paste)
Fresh Cream - 2 Tbsp
Salt - To Taste
Refined Oil or Ghee - 1 Tbsp

Wash and cut Mushrooms into cubes or slices.
Heat oil/ghee in a Kadai or saucepan. Fry Brown Onion paste and Ginger Garlic paste together till raw spell disappears.
Add Kasoori Methi and all the powders and sugar except Garam Masala powder.
Fry well till the mass becomes thick and oil oozes from it.
Add the Mushrooms and fry till they are slightly tender.
Add a cup of water.
Mix well, add salt to taste, bring it to a boil, cover, simmer and keep cooking for 5 mins.
Open the lid, add cashew paste, stir well and if necessary, add little more water. Allow to simmer for another 5 mins.
Now add the beaten fresh thick Cream and Garam Masala powder. Switch off the flame.

Mix and serve with Rotis, Phulkas, Chapathis, Parathas, Bread or with Ghee Rice.


Unknown said...

Love mushrooms - this is mouthwatering. Am going to try it out this weekend. BTW - love your blog Raj

Rajanikanth Shenoy, Kudpi said...

Thank you Lata


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