This is my entry to Nupur's RCI-Maharashtrian
Misal is a feast to your taste buds. Its fiery taste sweeps you off. Misal-Pav is a great one meal food. I was introduced to this in Kolhapur, I was visiting my friend R and her parents and that is when i ate it for the first time and from then on hooked to it. Kolhapuri Misal is much more hot, spicy, fiery than Puneri misal. One major difference between these two misal is that in Kolhapuri version they do not add Pohe. Misal as the name suggests is a mixture of pulses , spicy gravy, Poha, , spoonful of dahi and garnish of onions, tomatoes, cilatro, farsan, chivada etc. These things are arranged in multiple tier fashion and served. Pav/bread is also served along with misal. If your tastebuds are on fire biting into the bread will halp you out.
Lets walk through each and every layer of Misal. I have tried this dish as per Kolhapuri rassa but have toned it down a little to adjust the pungent taste.
When you serve misal the first thing that you will serve is Matki/Moth beans Usal. Usal is basically sprouted beans cooked in with tomatoes and onions. Its an dry dish without any gravy. You need to plan misal ahead of time since you need sprouted pulses. In India sprouted pulses are available in stores in packets but here you do not have that luxury :(. You will have to soak the beans overnight and then put these pulses in a damp cloth wait for 1-2 days . you could either cook this with diced potatoes or you could use these potatoes with rassa/gravy.
Pohe is the next layer over misal. Its very simple , cook pressed rice with minimum chillies in it. If you are lazy like me than substitute this with chivda. Though with Chivda your misal tends to be a little more oily.
Rassa/Gravy is basically made of tomatoes, dry coconut, onions etc. I prefer adding potatoes to this gravy instaed of plain rassa. Its this gravy that makes the misal fiery, hot and spicy. It should not be very thick, infact it should be thin enough. I loved the misal that was prepared by my friends mom so i made her share their recipe with me. I love it since this recipe has always helped me.
Now Lets start cooking Misal with One dish at a time.
1 Cup sprouted Matki/Moth Beans
1 tbl spn Turmeric powder
1 tbl spn Garam Masala
1/2 tbl spn Red chilli powder
1 tbl spn Ginger-garlic Paste
2 tbl spn oil
Salt to taste
Heat oil in a wok. Add ginger-garlic paste and saute for 2 mins. Add finely chopped onions, fry them till translucent. Add tuermeric , chili, garam masala Powder. Fry for just a minute. Now add tomatoes . Fry on low flame for a couple of minutes. Now put in boiled sprouted pulses. Cook for about 5 minutes till it is aromatic and dry.
p.s. You could add some water if required.
1 cup boiled and dices potatoes
2 onions ( 1 for grinding and other one is chopped)
1 tbl spn cumin seeds,
1 tbl spn coriander seeds
1 tbl spn sesame,
1/4 cup dried coconut,
1.5" cinnaman stick
2 tbl spns Red chili powder
1 tbl spn ginger garlic paste
few cilantro leaves
2 green chillies
salt to taste
Oil for cooking
( traditinally in R's house they use a lot of oil, almost 1/2 cup but have reduced it)
Dry roast Coconut, sesame,coriander seeeds, cumin seeds, cloves and cinammon. keep aside. in the mean time grind onion, ginger-garlic, chillies, cilantro to a fine paste. Keep aside. By this time the roasted contents will cool down. Grind these to a fine paste. Now heat oil, add onions and fry till translucent. Now add cocnut paste and fry for 4 minutes. Add in the other paste ( onion paste). dd red chilli powder, plenty of water and cook for 8-10 mins. Add salt to taste.
1 cup Pohe
1/2 spn Turmeric powder
1/2 Mustard seeds
1/4 spn Hing
Oil for cooking
Salt to taste
wash pohe and keep aside. Heat oil. Add mustard seeds. After they start spluttering add hing. Now add Pohe and salt. cook till done.We have prepared all the ingredients for Misal. It is time to arrange it in tiered manner. lets start with Matki Usal. this will form the lowest layer of Misal.
Now add Pohe
Pour in the rassa generaously.
Garnish with farsan/Mixture, onions, tomatoes,cilatro. Serve with a lemon wedge and Pav.
Njoy your Misal with taste buds on fire and water through your nose. R says that is the way to njoy misal in their house. R I tried it and it does make misal experience a anjoyable one.