When I was a kid, I thought becoming an adult was the answer to all my woes. You could sleep in late, spend money to buy as many Archie comics as you could read not and you did not have to eat vegetables.
Little did I know what I was in for.
I mean being an adult is ok and everything but you never get to do the things you had imagined and you DO EAT vegetables. The worst part is you eat them even when no one is forcing you to and you even shop for them.
Take Celery. I never had tasted a celery until I started going to BS's pre-school kiddie birthday parties a couple of years ago. These would be at one jumping place or the other and kids would have pizza while all the parents were offered was carrot sticks and celery ribs with a veggie dip. I loved the dip, I thought the celery was an instrument to scoop up that delicious dip. To eat them was blah.
I would still get celery to put in a soup or something or to rot in the refrigerator until LS's Nanny last year said "Didi apnara celery'r tarkari khan na"(Didi don't you eat celery sabzi). She must have recognized me as the ideal candidate to go on a celery diet.
I got the celery and she made a dish, Celery Chingri, a sabzi with celery and shrimp. It really was good, way better than anything with celery could have tasted. Like it wasn't something to die for but it was decent and would make for a nice side dish and it had shrimps, so why complain.
At this point though, let me tell you, if celery is not a vegetable local to where you are, like if you are in Cambodia and you have never seen your Mom cook celery DO NOT go out and buy if it is overpriced. It is not worth it. In that case just eat the shrimp.
And what is the Paprika doing in the picture you might ask ? It is NOT in the dish, the dish has red chili Powder, no mild paprika. The Paprika is what a harassed BongMom gives to the toddler to distract, so that she can take a pic on an overloaded work night. The outcome is not good, the pic lighted with no fancy Lowell ego but plain-jane side table lamps does not exactly glamorize the celery and the paprika has been dumped on the beige carpet. If I never ever blog again you know why.
Entries for Of Chalks and ChopSticks is welcome until Friday June 10th, midnight simply because I have not posted my entry yet. Tee hee !! I am the Super Power at least this one time.
Celery Chingri -- Celery with Shrimp
If using frozen shrimp defrost else clean and de-vein. Sprinkle with little salt and turmeric powder and keep aside for 10 minutes. I had about 10-12 shrimps
Chop the celery in really small pieces. Smaller than what you see in the pic.
The Celery Shrimp Sabzi
Heat Olive Oil in a saute pan
Fry the shrimp and remove and keep aside. When the shrimps are cool to touch, chop them in small pieces and eat a few
Add little more oil to the same pan if needed. Temper with 1 tsp of Paanch Phoron or Kalonji. If you have none of these use Cumin Seeds
When the spices sputter and pop, add 1/2 up of chopped red onion and little more. Fry the onion with a sprinkle of sugar till onion is pinkish brown
Add 1 heaped tsp of garlic paste and fry for say 1/2 a minute
Add 1 potato chopped in small cubes. Add 1/4 tsp of turmeric powder and fry the potatoes till light yellow
Add 1 tsp of roasted corriander powder and 1/2 tsp of red chili Powder.With a sprinkle of water fry the masala along with the potatoes.
Add about 2 cups of celery very finely chopped and mix everything well. The celery should be chopped thinner than shown in pic. Add salt to taste and cover the saute pan, letting the celery cook. Every couple of minutes remove the cover and stir the vegetables until done.
Taste for seasoning and adjust accordingly. If needed add a tsp of Garam Masala.
Add the shrimp pieces, give a good mix and serve with dal and other dishes.
Vegetarian Option: Instead of shrimp add fried pieces of paneer.