Recipes: Bhindi Do Pyaza aka Okra Onion Gravy

img_0254I’ve always seen Bhindi Do Pyaza in restaurant menus and have eaten it before also, but I’ve always wondered at the dish’s name and how they make it. Every restaurant has their own recipes and so this has been different in each restaurant I’ve eaten too.

The other day, fed up with cooking almost the same dishes every day and also facing rapidly diminishing refrigerator contents, I decided to make this, albeit slightly differently to go with a peas and corn pulao. Usually this recipe will be more dry than a gravy at restaurants, but since I was serving this with rice, decided to make it with a red tomato gravy. Bhindi Do Pyaza was a hit and everyone loved it and this will become part of our usual menu.

img_0251Bhindi Do Pyaza

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 kg bhindi or okra, washed and dried completely
  • 4-5 onions, cut into half and sliced finely lengthwise
  • 4 medium sized tomatoes
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp onion seeds
  • 2-3 tbsp oil
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1-2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala powder
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • Salt to taste
  • Coriander leaves to garnish

Method:

  • Make small x cuts in the top and bottom of each tomato and keep aside. Take some water in a pan and when the water starts boiling, put the tomatoes top down and let them cook. Keep an eye on them and turn occasionally.
  • In the meantime, cut the okra into 1 inch pieces.
  • Heat around 1 tbsp oil in a pan and when the oil heats up, put the okras to fry. Stir occasionally, shake the pan if needed. Cook the okras till they are three quarters done and remove from the pan and keep aside.
  • In the same pan, heat the remaining oil and add the cumin and onion seeds and fry for a couple of seconds. Then add the ginger and stir for a minute. Next add the onions and fry them till they become translucent and start to brown.
  • When the tomatoes are done, remove them from the water, peel the skin away and blend the pulp into a smooth paste.
  • When the onions start to brown, add the dry spices one by one – turmeric powder, red chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin power and and a bit of salt.
  • If the mixture is very dry and starts to burn, add some of the water which you boiled the tomatoes.
  • When the mixture is completely cooked, add the fried okra and cook for a few minutes.
  • Now add the tomato paste and check for seasoning. Add 1/2 to 1 tsp of garam masala if you want here.
  • Let the dish cook till it starts  bubbling and at this point, reduce the flame and let it cook for another 5 minutes. If you need to add water, use the water you used to boil the tomatoes. When you have the consistency you want, switch off the flame.
  • Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with a flatbread or rice of your choice.

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