Banana flower sabji
This is a delicious preparation made from the florets of the banana flower.
The flower of the banana tree has an amazing structure. It is fairly large .
The florets are hidden under the layers of the large purple colour bracts. When you peel away these bracts, you will notice a row of florets nestling under them.
The bhaaji is made from the florets. The bracts are to be discarded.
Cleaning these florets is a tedious process but the delicious taste and their high nutritive value , makes it all worth it.
Each floret has a thin black pistil ( a part of the flower) and a transparent plastic like part (the calyx). Discard both these.
Keep peeling off the bracts and use all the florets in the flower.
As you reach the rows towards in the end, the florets become very tender.
You can use these whole, without discarding the calyx and the pistil.
The bhaaji is a very simple recipe with basic ingredients. various parts of India make it in there own unique style.
At my place, we make it the ‘maharashtrian Konkani style”.
Black peas (kala vatana)are added to the dish to add volume and enhance the protein content.
1 kelful /banana flower
1/2 cup black peas (soaked overnight)
2 Tablespoon freshly scraped coconut
1 teaspoon green chilly paste
1 tablespoon thick tamarind pulp
2 teaspoons oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp jeera
1/2 tsp haldi
1/2 tsp hing
Pressure cook the soaked peas .
Clean and chop the florets of the kelphool.
Soak these in tamarind pulp for 30 minutes. Add enough water to completely cover the florets.
Heat oil in a pan and make the tadka.
Add the chilly paste and sauté.
Drain the florets and add to the pan.
Cover and cook for a few minutes.
Add the peas.
Add salt, 1/2 tsp of sugar or jaggery, coconut, chopped coriander and mix.
Add water if required, this is a dry sabji.
Serve hot with poli or steamed rice .
Here are some suggestions to making this bhaji
You could use fresh green peas if available .
You could bring the coconut, jeera, green chillies and coriander together and use it.
You could use red chilly powder instead of green chillies.
You could use buttermilk to soak the florets , instead of tamarind pulp.