The origins of this dish are in Gujarat. There are a lot of variations of cooking undhiyu. As this dish is my husband’s favourite, I made sure that I mastered this recipe by learning it from my dad who used to be a good cook. Undhiyu is cooked over a slow heat and I mean slow heat with lots of vegetables and muthia (fenugreek dumplings). The dish has a variety of vegetables such as papdi, valor, potatoes, small aubergines, peas, green chillies, onions, baby carrots etc... which are readily available in the UK.
The recipe is not as complicated as it looks. The preparation time for this recipe is more important than the cooking part.
For stuffing the vegetables:
2 tablespoons Chickpea flour
2 tablespoons cumin powder
2 tablespoons coriander powder
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
Salt to taste
Chilly powder to taste
4 cloves of crushed garlic
1 teaspoon of crushed ginger (optional)
1 tablespoon brown sugar
Sunflower oil about 4 or 5 tablespoons
Optional ingredients can be added to add extra flavour:
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
2 tablespoons ground peanuts -preferably roasted and ground
For the seasoning:
1 teaspoon of dried mustard seeds
Vegetables for the actual curry (all amounts are approximate and you can experiment with any vegetables you have in the fridge or freezer):
5 or 6 small potatoes (baby potatoes are preferable but any small ones are good.)
4 or 5 bullet chillies
3-4 small aubergines (brinjels)
mixed frozen vegetables - can also use any fresh vegetables you have in the fridge.
2 fresh tomatoes
A handful of valor beans
A handful of papdi beans
half a can crushed tomatoes
2 tablespoons of lemon
1 tablespoon jaggery
Fresh coriander or desiccated coconut to decorate the curry
Muthias ( recipe for muthias is at: http://givemesomespice.blogspot.com/2010/05/muthia-or-fenugreek-dumplings-to-add-to.html
For the stuffing:
1. Mix the Chickpea flour, cumin and coriander powder, salt , chilly powder, crushed garlic and jaggery in a saucepan. Add a couple of tablespoons of oil and stir the mixture. Warm this mixture gently until you get an aroma of the spices. For those of you who are unsure, I would suggest that you cover the mixture and microwave it for a minute, stir it and microwave it again for another minute. Stir and allow to cool. The mixture should be moist as this will help blend the flavours to the vegetables.
2. In the meantime, prepare the vegetables:
The potatoes, onions, tomatoes and chillies need to be prepared and left whole with just diagonal cuts – one at the top of the vegetable and one at the bottom end. The cuts should be long enough to enable you to stuff the spices as shown in my pictures below:
3. Heat 2 to 3 tablespoons of oil in a saucepan. Add the mustard seeds to the oil. Once the seeds start popping, gently take the vegetables one by one and lower them into the saucepan. Use a spoon if you are worried about the hot oil. My suggestion would be to put in the potatoes first, then onions, tomatoes, aubergines and lastly the stuffed chillies. Now add the valor, papdi and any other mixed vegetables you may have and sprinkle on any spices left over after stuffing the vegetables. The picture below may explain this better.
4. Allow the curry to cook on a gentle heat. I tend to add a few frozen mixed vegetables to the curry as they help to add moisture to the curry and also help the vegetables to cook well.
5. The trick is to cook this curry without stirring it. Cook it on a very low heat. To check if the vegetables have cooked, prick them with a knife. Once the potatoes are cooked, add the muthias to the curry. Add the crushed tomatoes and lemon juice to the curry and allow it to cook for 5 more minutes.
6. Undhiyu is usually made quite dry and served with chappatis, rice and Gujarati dall which is like a thin soup.
7. If you prefer your curry to have some gravy, you can add a glass of water to it.
The following picture is of an undhiyu I made by adding some water to it. It was a nice curry to have with rice.