Green Peas/Batani Usli
This is one such mouth-watering side dish often accompanied with pooris or chapattis in my household. At my place we used to prepare this dish only when fresh Green peas were available. I am not sure how they taste with dried peas, and I don’t think they taste as good as the fresh ones. In India that too especially in the South Kanara region sweet peas is not available all year round. I remember buying them sometime between late November thru March and the prices would be a bit too expensive. We all just loved the fresh peas and we used to make different varieties of dishes like aloo mattar, Batani/green peas Ambat etc. Here in US it’s available all year round and now its one of the must have’s in my freezer!!
Green pea’s sautéed in a simple seasoning and cooked till tender is just the thing. The sweetness of peas is incredible in this dish. Usli is usually dry and prepared using legumes like moong dal, chana dal etc. But this particular dish is not dry, adding good amount of water to cook and also retaining some of it will add up to its taste. The sweetness from peas and the spiciness from chillies complement very well and make this a yummy side dish with pooris or chapattis. We added a tsp of jaggery, believe me it really tastes good. I guess I add jaggery/brown sugar in most of my cooking. I guess a hint of sweetness brings out all the true flavors in a dish. Again just a hint does it all.If at all you don't like to add jaggery you can skipt it.
We all loved this dish and I must say who ever tried this combination just loved it. After my marriage I prepared this dish and everyone just got bowled with it.
So give a try and let me know.
2 cups Frozen green peas
3 green chillies slit
1 red chilli (torn into pieces)
½ tsp mustard seeds
2 tsp cooking oil
5 curry leaves torn into pieces
¼ tsp asafoetida
1 tbsp coconut gratings
Salt to taste
2 tsp Jaggery/brown sugar.
1. Heat a kadai or a sauce pan and add oil. When heated through add mustard seeds, as it starts crackling follow it by adding green chillies, red chilli pieces, curry leaves and asafoetida & stir for a minute.
2. Add the frozen peas and fry further for a minute or two. Add about 1cup of water and cook till the peas are soft and tender. Now season with salt and jaggery/brown sugar and mix well.
3. Finally add coconut gratings and cover and cook further for about 2 minutes.The usli must be soupy. The sweet peas cooked water makes it more tasty and flavorful!!
Serve with hot chapattis or pooris.