One of negatives of trying all these new recipes and new ingredients is that you put on the backburner some of the things you grew up eating. I spend so much time and energy trying to simplify those intricate dishes that I forget the ones that are already simple and easy and oh so comforting. I decided to reprise one of these recipes that I grew up eating. Its called phana poha in konkani, meaning seasoned poha. Such a simple dish and so few ingredients and just good eats. They don't overwhelm your taste buds. You are not waiting for your taste buds to break into a song or go "bam" into your mouth. You don't have to brace for the explosion of flavors in your mouth. Not that there is anything wrong with that. It's just that, some days, you don't want all of those things. Somedays, you just want to lay back, have a morsel of food that comforts you, lulls you to a place long left behind like your childhood. Somedays, you just want to give your tastebuds some rest. Thats when I go back down memory lane and dig up dishes like these.
There are lots of ways to do this, but my family loves it this way and this is the way I do it.
So here goes,
2 cups poha -thin variety
1 cup coconut gratings
5 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp ghee
some mustard seeds and curry leaves
2 dried red chillies
A pinch of salt
Place a single layer of newspaper in the microwave. I always use the newspaper, but I guess wax paper should be fine. Spread the poha on it in a thin, single layer. Turn off the "turn table setting" on your microwave. Microwave on 1 minute interval till the poha crisps up. They are crisped up when it crumbles or at least breaks when you lightly press one between your thumb and forefinger. Cool completely.
Heat up a tbsp of ghee, add mustard seeds. When they sputter, add curry leaves and the dried red chillies. Pour it on the poha and mix well, coating the poha with the seasoned ghee.
Mix coconut gratings, sugar and salt. Just before serving, add this coconut mixture to the poha. Enjoy.
As you can see, the possibilities are endless. Add green chillies, dalia, peanuts etc. to the seasonings. Add chopped onion and coriander to the toppings. Shilpa of Aayi's Recipes has blogged a very nice way of doing it. But, today my goal was simplicity and this served my purposes just fine.