Kadai Bhindi – A rich, flavorful dish made with aromatic spice blend, healthy, easy, quick and almost everyone’s favorite in Indian households! This humble vegetable will win the popularity vote any day!
In this post, Iam also sharing the awesome, versatile recipe of making the Kadai Masala at home. It’s a keeper. It truly enhances the taste of a lot of vegetable dishes. And the best part – you can make it in 15 minutes, and store it for use over the next 3 months!
I made this dish last year when I had temporarily moved to Malaysia on a project. I had a beautiful apartment, at a beautiful location, though it was quite minimalist home, especially the kitchen. I had brought a couple of vessels to make something in case I got tired of eating restaurant food (which I never thought I would – but believe me, I did). Also, during the times when I wasn’t working, I loved to try making stuff in my minimalist kitchen – just for the fun of it. And of course I discovered I actually enjoyed the challenge of cooking with minimal ingredients, accessories, kitchen gadgets. I felt triumphant when I discovered and made new stuff, at times so much so that I would forget to eat it. True story. The joy was in the making 🙂 It’s one thing to whip up a 20 ingredient fancy-shmancy recipe in my regular kitchen and feel happy about it.. but it was totally different to make something in my minimalist kitchen here with one vessel, few spoonful of ingredients and a stove top with one temperature setting. Oh joy!
My trip to Malaysia was planned at the very last minute and so didn’t get time to think of what all I needed to pack. Though while I was leaving house, I quickly ran back inside and filled a bottle of some freshly ground kadai masala that I had made few days ago, and couple of other things. One of the best things I packed in last 30 seconds 🙂 It helped me make so many of my meals on days when I didn’t have the energy left after a long work day to go to a restaurant or didn’t feel like having restaurant food.
Anyways, coming back to my Kadai Bhindi recipe.. I made this over a year ago, but blogging about it only now. Bhindi has been one of my favorite subzis since childhood. I used to go on a bhindi eating spree where for 2 months in a row, I would only eat bhindi subzi and roti for lunch. Trick to a great bhindi subzi is, to use a bit of lemon juice, get green, tender bhindi – the ones which you can easily snap a piece with a thumb, the ones which are not too thick.
- 20-25 qty Okra / Bhindi
- 2 qty Potatoes medium sized
- 2-3 teaspooons Oil
- a pinch Asafatida
- 4-6 qty Curry leaves
- to taste Salt
- 1/2 teaspoon Turmeric powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Coriander-cumin powder (dhania-jeera powder)
- 1 - 1/2 teaspoon Kadai masala (recipe included below)
- 1/2 teaspoon Red chili powder or use qty to taste
- 1 teaspoon Lemon juice
Wash and peel potatoes. Cut it into cubes.
Wash the bindi. Dry it really well with kitchen or paper towel. Make sure no moisture remains at all, else it will make the subzi sticky. Chop off the ends and cut the bhindi into approximately half inch pieces.
Heat oil in a wide bottomed pan on medium heat. Add asafetida, curry leaves. Add potato cubes. Saute’. In a couple of minutes, add turmeric powder. Mix.
When the potatoes are about half cooked, add the chopped bhindi, lemon juice. Mix it well. As much as possible, keep it all in single layer for it to cook evenly. Lemon juice helps remove the slime/stickiness. It also helps make the subzi a bit crispier.
Let it cook for 3-4 minutes. Then add the kadai masala (recipe is given below. You can also add bit of garam masala in case you don’t have kadai masala), salt, coriander-cumin powder, and red chili powder. Mix well. Let it cook until potatoes and bhindi are cooked completely.
Enjoy with rotis, parathas or rice!
See homemade Kadai masala recipe below in the post.
Recipe for Kadai Masala
This masala can be kept in an air-tight container for several months. If you don't want to spent time making kadai masala for this recipe, you may use garam masala instead.
- 10 qty Kashmiri whole red chillies
- 1 tablespoon Coriander seeds
- 1 tablespoon Cumin seeds
- 1 tablespoon Fennel seeds
- 3 qty Bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon Black peppercorn
- 8-10 qty Green cardamom
- 1-2 qty Black cardamom
- 2 inches Cinnamon stick
Dry roast all of the above spices individually for 1-2 minutes each, or until nicely roasted. You will smell the aroma and know if it’s done. Make sure not to burn the spice. The reason to roast it separately is, each of these have different heating points. So in order for these to get roasted well, it is advisable to roast separately.
Once done, let this cool down in a plate. Once it’s cool, coarsely grind it. Do not grind it into a powder. The masala tastes and looks really nice and flavorful when it’s consistency is a bit coarse.