Monday, 24 May 2010
Hi friends, hope you all had a wonderful weekend. Our weekend was fine. We went on a trip to a city called Hamm. There is a big Kamakshi Amman temple. Will be posting some pictures of the journey soon. Here in Germany, today is a holiday too. We enjoyed this long weekend and I really feel lazy to get up earlier tomorrow :(.
How many of you like mushrooms? I guess not many. I am also not a fan of button mushrooms but these oyster mushrooms are a lovely, tasty and healthy treat. The oyster mushrooms which grow naturally on bark of banana-plant during rainy season have no equivalents. Since I come from a village surrounded by banana plantation we used to get them during rainy season. They taste like mutton, even more tastier. Village children used to eat them raw. Here in Germany we get artificially cultivated oyster mushrooms. Although they are not as tasty as the natural ones they taste good. Fry it or make a gravy out of it like this, they make an excellent accompaniment for rice and cahppathis. Back in India, every sunday we used to enjoy this mushroom fry and kuzhambu. If you haven't tried oyster mushrooms its time to try.
The scientific name of oyster mushroom is Pleurotus Ostreatus. They have very low fat content. They are also rich in cholesterol fighting statin called mevinolin. Oyster mushrooms have high protein and B complex vitamin content. Hence they make an excellent meat substitute for vegetarians. They have proven anti-tumour, anti-inflammatory, anti-viral and anti-bacterial property.
Oyster mushrooms- 250 grams
Tomato- 2 nos
Onion- 1 no or 10 shallots
Coconut milk- one cup or 2 tbspns of coconut powder
Ginger- a small piece, crushed
Garlic- 2 pods, crushed
Green chillies- 4 nos
Coriander powder- 2 tspns
Chilli powder- 2 tspns (adjust according to your taste)
Garam masala- 1 tspn (optional)
Turmeric- a pinch
Curry leaves- fistful
Cloves- 4 nos
Cinnamon- a half-inch piece
Tear mushrooms with your hand into big pieces (they shrunk when cooked, they have high water content). Wash them and keep aside. Cut onions and tomatoes into small pieces. Mince green chillies. Crush ginger and garlic. Heat oil in a pan. When the oil gets heated add cloves and cinnamon. When they emit a nice aroma add onions, green chillies, crushed ginger and garlic, turmeric and curry leaves. When the onions turn translucent add tomato pieces and salt to taste. Fry the mixture until the tomatoes become soft. Now add coriander and chilli powder and saute well until the raw smell goes away. Add oyster mushrooms at this stage and saute well for a few minutes. When they ooze out water and shrink add a cup of coconut milk. Add some water if necessary. Bring the mixture to boil and simmer it until the oil seperates on the top. Tasty kuzhambu will be ready to be served.
Taste enhancing tips for this recipe : Use fresh coconut milk if possible. Use oyster mushrooms for a better taste. The stem potion of the oyster mushroom is the most tastiest. Please do not throw away the stem. Button mushrooms can also be used. Fry the mushrooms well before you add coconut milk. Add any garam masala at the end of preparation for more flavour. Happy cooking !!!