This week has been busier than I’d ever imagined. Every time I sit down to write, something else prioritizes itself above my blog. I’m not complaining. Everything is right when I prioritize my family above my blog. I’ve backlogged a few recipes that need more testing before sharing. I’m glad I planned repeat recipes this week, too. Tonight we had Black Rice Salad. Later this week I’ve planned Adzuki and Kabocha Miso Stew to use my last kabocha of the season. All in all it was a great week to try a little something new.
This week we have been contemplating those less fortunate than us as plan our alms giving for the fast. A friend of mine shared this article, “How to Feed Your Family From a Food Bank.” It shares insights into those who are trying to make ends meet and sometimes need a little help to do so. Some of her shopping and cooking tips are ones I use to help keep our grocery bill down.
We have also been reading through What the World Eats all week. The kids love to flip through and look at all the pictures. Not only does it give us a peek into food from around the world, but it also includes recipes. I love when I stumble across cultural recipes that are already gluten and dairy free. It is very exciting to find that you can try something new and still be able to eat it in a form that is actually original. Nevertheless, I still had to omit the green chiles, but it was the only ingredient that had to go.
Poha is a flattened rice from India. Think rolled oats, but with rice instead. Though the book didn’t differentiate, there are two kinds of poha: thick and thin. With a little more research I discovered that thick poha is what you want for this recipe. Of course I discovered that after I purchased the thin variety from a local Indian grocery store. I even found a package that declares “No Allergens Present.” Just so you know, the package I purchased at the Indian grocery was less than half the price of the one that is linked in this post.
I wouldn’t normally go out for just two special ingredients, but a monthly appointment had us going past the bazar closest to us, and I was already stopping for another item. It was an ingredient for that recipe that needs testing, so I’ll tell you more about it later. That made my detour two aisles instead of a thirty minute drive. The kids are far more persuasive when a scenario works out so well.
I also had not heard of one of the garnishes recommended in the recipe. Sev is a fried chickpea noodle. It is sold in chip bags as a snack that comes in many flavors. Sadly all of the commercial ones have paprika or cayenne in the ingredients, so Buster can’t have them. I got a bag to decide if they were worth trying to make at home. The answer was a resounding, “Yum!” Now I need one of these so Buster can have some too.
Another interesting tidbit is that this savory dish is traditionally a breakfast in India, but I would gladly eat it any time of day. Also, be sure you prep everything before you start soaking the poha. You’ll need your undivided attention for the cooking process. There are many variations of poha. Some variations are sweeter with raisins and nuts. Others use legumes. I can’t wait to use the rest of the bag.
This recipe made exactly enough for my family. I’m going to have to double and triple the recipe as the boys grow.
Allergy Friendly Poha
2 cups thick poha
1 Tbsp safflower oil
1 tsp mustard seed
1/2 onion, sliced thin
1 med potato, diced in 1/4 inch cubes
1/2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
Optional garnishes: chopped cilantro, shredded unsweetened coconut, sev
Soak poha in a bowl for about five minutes. Then drain and let rest until ready to use.
While poha is soaking, heat the oil on medium-high in your wok or deep skillet. Add the mustard seeds and stir for one minute.
Add the potato and onions. Saute for 5-10 minutes, until the potatoes are turning golden and are cooked through. Stir constantly.
Add the soaked poha, sugar, salt, and turmeric. Stir fry for two minutes and stir well. Cover the pan and remove from the heat for two minutes.
Serve and garnish as desired.