My ex-boss Ashit is a brilliant cook. Although I was familiar with the eternal adage that all the greatest cooks in the world are male, I was yet to encounter one… before I met Ashit. My father cannot cook to save his life, and although my husband does know a trick or two, he has given up after I entered his kitchen more than a decade ago…after a few displays of his gastronomic expertise in the initial days. That had more to do with impressing the new bride than anything else. Most men I am convinced, do certain things only to impress. The moment he has made his required impression, he just hangs his boots on them, and moves on to something more exciting. Women however, diligently keep carrying out the tasks society has entrusted them with without questioning much. That hugely feminist statement calls for a detailed discussion, which we can take up at a later date. Now let me quickly get into the reason which reminded me of Ashit in the first place.
Ashit stayed in the same building the office was housed and hence had the rare privilege of going home for lunch on most days. This also brought upon us the privilege of tasting some of the yummiest dishes prepared by him. He had this absolutely amazing taste for good food, and would starve to death rather than eating something which did not appeal to his palate. Just as this quest for good food made him travel miles to taste a particular dish in a particular eatery or to buy a particular ingredient from an authentic seller, it also made him rise early and retire late for the preparations to be made for his cooking. All of this labor culminated into some of the most mouth-watering dishes ever made. One of such dishes was the Matar-Mushroom, or finely chopped mushrooms cooked in a coarse green-peas gravy. I often asked the recipes of different dishes he let us taste and tried my hands at some on a much much later date. They almost never turned out the same. Because I did not want to believe that my memory had failed me and I had missed out an ingredient or two I always preferred to believe that boss had forgotten to mention an ingredient, maybe. The mutter-mushroom, much to my delight turned out exactly like his, juicy, and yummy.
Greenpeas: a cupful, coarsely ground
Mushroom : 200 gms chopped finely
Onion: One medium
Garlic: 2 cloves, chopped
Ginger paste : ½ spoonful
Green chillies : 2, slit
Salt: to taste
Turmeric: a pinch
Sugar : ½ spoon (optional)
Oil: 1 tsp
Sugar : a pinch,(not mandatory)
Step1: Heat 1 tsp of any oil of your choice and in it add the garlic first, and the onion after a minute.
Step2: Add the ginger paste and the green chillies, after the onion turn translucent.
Step3: Fry for about 5 more minutes and as the onion starts turning brown, add the coarsely ground green peas.
Step4:Another 5 minutes and add the chopped mushroom and mix thoroughly. Add the salt, and also a pinch of sugar, if you wish.
Cover, and allow it to cook for about 5 minutes.
Remove from heat. A great dish to go with hot rotis or dal-rice is ready !
Snaps as I do it :