Thursday, July 7, 2011

Corn on Cob Curry- "Bhutte Ki Sabzi"

"Sabzi" stands for vegetable. In Indian cuisine, we tend to eat a variety of "sabzi;" for instance aloo-ki-sabzi (potato), aloo-pyaaz-tamatar ki sabzi (potato+onion+tomato), bhindi ki sabzi (okra/lady finger), baingan ki sabzi (eggplant/brinjal), karele ki sabzi (bitter gourd/bitter melon- that most people hate!) etc etc. Basically you take any vegetable or a medley of vegetables and cook it/them in some spices and voila! you have one tasty "sabzi" (dry or wet) that you can eat with rotis (Indian bread) or rice.

And so, here is a recipe for my special "Bhutte ki Sabzi," that is corn on cob cooked in a lovely spicy masala or gravy:


I'll break the ingredients down into 3 parts, so that the list doesn't seem too overwhelming! Though, in reality, this is, like all my cooking, real easy:

1. A couple corn on the cob (not sure about the plural form.......corns on the cobs? corn on the cobs? corns on the cob?)
2. 1 tablespoon tomato paste
3. 1 russet potato (could use 2 medium potatoes) cut into fairly large cubes- this takes care of the consistency of the final gravy

Corn on Cob

For the Gravy/Masala:

1. 1 medium onion
2. 1 tomato
3. 3-4 cloves of garlic
4. 1"-2" ginger piece

Grind all the above 4 items in a food processor. This is the base for almost all masalas/gravies in North Indian cooking.

Masala/Gravy Base (onion+garlic+ginger+tomato)

The Rest:

1. 5-6 teaspoons of oil
2. 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds
3. Salt to taste
4. Red chilli powder (per desire!)
5. Pinch of turmeric powder
6. 1 or 2 teaspoons of garam masala/curry powder
7. 1-2 cups of water (gotta gauge this measurement a bit) 

Utensil of Choice: A Pressure Cooker- works best to cook corn on cob (10 minutes only). You may use a regular pot, though it will take way longer- maybe about 40-45 minutes up to an hour.


1. Pour in 5-6 teaspoons of oil into the pressure cooker and get the heat going. Add a teaspoon of cumin seeds to the heated oil followed by the masala base (onion+garlic+ginger+tomato). Immediately start stirring the masala (be careful, it might splatter around). I also add a pinch of turmeric at this point and continue to stir.

2. Ideally the masala needs to be fried until all the water has evaporated and you see oil floating on top of a thick masala. (And if you are on a time-crunch, it is OK to skip the oil-has-to-float-on-top part, but do fry it for minimum 5-7 minutes just to get that raw onion-garlic taste out).  Salt, red chilli powder and garam masala powder may be added at this point.

3. Throw in the chopped potato and the corn on cob into this masala, followed by a cup or two of water, plus 1 tablespoon of tomato paste. Stir everything and close the pressure cooker lid.

Just before closing the lid........
4. Once the pressure has built up in the cooker, lower the flame and cook for 10 minutes (if you have a pressure cooker that has a "whistle," I would say give it about 3-4 whistles) and then switch off the stove and allow the cooker to cool off.

5. Once all the pressure has been released from the cooker, open the lid and enjoy the view!

Before serving, I cut the corn on cob into nice individual pieces so that everybody gets to nibble on some corn. If you notice, in the picture above, there is one little piece on the left-- well, that was my failed attempt to cut the corn in the beginning- my knife didn't do the job too well. If you have a good sharp and strong knife, you could very well cut the corn on cob right at the start. 

Everybody can nibble on some corn!
The real fun lies in nibbling the corn and then sucking out all the juices from the cob. You know, you almost bite down on the cob, but not quite and then suck out the delightful juice out of it. YUM!

I made bhutte-ki-sabzi today for lunch and the kids loved it, especially the nibbling part. Here's a picture that my son wanted me to put up, just to show you how enjoyable this whole nibbling the corn on cob really is:

Delightful nibbling!
And finally, this is what was left on the table (in a bowl, of course!):

No more corn on the cob!


adibud34 said...

You could also try grilling the corn first to get some grill marks, and a little bit of a smoked flavor, and then pressure cook it! Tastes yum!

Dreamer said...

Good idea! Mmm hmmm! ;)