Sweet Potato Sabji With Missi Roti

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Entree

“A Grateful Meal”

To see the entire seven- course meal menu, please click on the menu bar on the main blog page and click on the title of the menu- “A Grateful Meal”.

I have heard for years from your Grandmother on how my Nani used to make a sweet potato sabji with the base being made from methi (fenugreek) seeds. My Nani holds a very special place in my heart. When I was a toddler and she had come out to visit one of her sole duties was to feed me because I used to take forever to eat. So she would patiently sit there for a couple hours at a time and put bites into my mouth. This wasn’t because I was a picky eater but more so because I was a daydreamer. I couldn’t be rushed along because I was so caught up in whatever world I was in that eating was an afterthought. I find myself to be extremely blessed and fortunate to have someone there to understand that during my childhood. So often children are rushed and herded from one activity to the next because we can’t afford the time to let them just be and in my case, dream. She didn’t do it because she had nothing else to do. I learned this about her when I moved to India and sat with her for many afternoons. She had the patience then and all the way to the end, because she understood. People, no matter how big or small, always made sense to her. My Nani was never one to judge anyone and could care less about anyone else’s judgement. She once reacted to my cousin getting his tongue pierced by saying “Well, he should drink juice to make sure it doesn’t get infected”. I miss her dearly. I wanted to make this sabji to remember her. It was a hit at the meal, by the way. So many said they had never tasted a sabji like this before and then asked to take some home. The Missi Rotis were my own doing. They just seemed like the perfect accompaniment. Enjoy…

Sweet Potato Sabji With Missi Roti

Sweet Potato Sabji:

Serves 4- 6 within a seven course meal

2 Large Sweet Potatoes, Peeled and Chopped Into 1 Inch Pieces

1 Tbsp Oil

1 Tsp Methi Seeds

1 Medium Onion Diced

2 Cloves Garlic Minced

1 Inch Piece of Ginger Peeled and Minced

1 Medium Tomato Chopped

1 Tsp. Haldi (Turmeric)

1 Tbsp Achaari Aloo Masala (available at Indian grocery stores)

1 Tsp. Salt

1 Tbsp. Ghee

1 Tbsp. Chopped Cilantro

Technique

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees fahrenheit. Heat the oil in a sauté pan (I use a cast iron skillet) on medium heat. Add the methi seeds and let them warm up for about thirty seconds. Then add the onion, garlic and ginger. Keep stirring to make sure the garlic and ginger don’t burn. Once the onions have softened, add the tomato and cook for a few minutes. Sprinkle the haldi, achaari aloo masala and salt over the mixture. Now that the tarka (base) is done turn the heat off. Add the sweet potato cubes and ghee and mix everything together. Transfer it from the pan to a casserole dish if you aren’t using a cast iron skillet. Cover the casserole dish with foil.  If you are using a skillet then just cover it with foil and place it in the oven. Roast for about twenty minutes, until the potatoes are fork tender. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the chopped cilantro. Serve warm.

Missi Roti:

Makes 10- 12 small rotis.

2 Cups Whole Wheat Flour

1 Cup Besan (Gram) Flour

1 Tbsp Parantha Masala

1/4 Cup Kasoori Methi Crushed In Between Your Palms Until

2 Tsp Salt

2-4 Cups Warm Water

1 Tbsp Oil

1/2 Wheat Flour (In a bowl) To Help the Dough Not Stick When Cooking

*Ghee for Spreading on Top*

Technique

Combine the flours, the masala, kasoori methi, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Slowly add the warm water and begin to knead the dough. The more you knead it, the more gluten will develop and softer the roti will be. Keep adding the water slowly until a ball of dough forms. It should not be very sticky and should be able to stick together in a ball nicely. Coat another bowl with the oil and place the ball of dough inside of it. Use some of the oil from the sides of the bowl to coat the ball of dough on top. Allow the dough to rest for 15-20 minutes. Heat a skillet or a tawa on medium to high heat. Take a golf ball size of the dough and roll it around between your palms to make a smooth ball. Then dip it into the bowl of wheat flour and sprinkle a little extra flour on a flat surface. Slowly roll out the ball with a rolling pin into a salad plate sized circle. The extra flour should help the dough not stick to the rolling pin. Take a small pinch of the dough and smear it onto the skillet. If it turns a nice caramel color then the skillet is hot enough. Place the rolled out dough onto the skillet and allow it to cook for about two minutes and then flip it over. Once you flip it over it should start to puff up. When it puffs up you can use a folded paper towel to gently push down the puffed up areas or just let it simply puff up. Flip it over once more to make sure both sides are cooked and then take it out and spread a small dollop of ghee on top. Continue to make the rotis until the dough is finished. Yes, I fully understand how arduous this process is but this is quintessential Indian food. Millions of women in and around India spend a large part of their lives making rotis. It is a labor of love. I hope you appreciate that the next time someone makes you rotis.

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