Mirchi Ka Salaan

Mirchi ka Salaan is a popular dish made in Hyderabad and served as an accompaniment to biryani. We rarely ordered salaan while dining out fearing it might be spicy. But this recipe is a keeper and can be made mild or spicy depending on your taste buds. The dish can be made mild by scraping out the seeds and the light green veins inside the chilies. But make sure you wear gloves while handling the chilies as they can irritate or burn your skin.

This dish was introduced by my friend Vani who is from Hyderabad. Whenever I host potluck parties I have her bring Mirchi ka salaan and this dish is a hit at all parties. You must trust an Andhriite (native to Andhra) to make good biryani and salaan. I have eaten this dish multiple times and getting the recipe from her was inevitable. Of course she gladly agreed to share her recipe. I have made some minor changes to the recipe but still kept the essence of the original dish.

Mirchi ka salaan and biryani are complementary. I’m using serrano peppers here but feel free to use jalapenos too. Coconut, sesame and peanuts impart creaminess to the dish and can be made vegan by skipping yogurt.  You can serve salaan with biryani or rotis, parathas even plain rice. 

Try this dish and let me know how it went for you.

Servings

3-4 people

Prep Time

15 minutes

Cook Time

40-45 minutes

Total Time

About an hour

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tbsp peanuts
  • 2-3 tbsp coconut
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 8 serrano peppers
  • For the sauce:
  • ½  tbsp ginger paste
  • ½ tbsp garlic paste
  • 1 cup onion chopped
  • Salt to taste
  • 2-3 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tbsp cumin and coriander powder
  • ½  cup cilantro, chopped
  • 2 sprigs mint leaves
  • Pinch of turmeric powder
  • 2- 2 ½  cups of water
  • 2 tbsp oil plus 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp tamarind paste/pulp
  • 2 tbsp yogurt, whisked
  • 1 tsp jaggery

For seasoning:

  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • ⅛ tsp fenugreek seeds
  • ⅛ tsp asafetida powder
  • 2 sprigs curry leaves
PREPARATION

Step 1
Dry roast peanuts, coconut and sesame seeds one by one and keep aside.

Step 2 
Prepare the chilies by splitting lengthwise. Take the seeds and veins out. This is optional, if you prefer the dish spicy forgo the step and just split. Smear with salt on the inside.

Step 3
Take a pan add 2 tbsp oil and saute the chilies until golden brown by turning on all sides. Keep aside.

Step 4
In another pan add oil and all the seasoning ingredients except curry leaves. Once mustard splutters add curry leaves.

Step 5
Add chopped onion to the pan and salt. When onion is golden brown add ginger and garlic paste. Cook for a minute.

Step 6
Add red chili powder, turmeric powder and cumin coriander powder. Add 1 ½ cups of water. Let it cool. 

Step 7
Blend the onion mixture along with coconut, sesame and peanuts to a fine paste.

Step 8
Return the paste to the pan and add chopped mint and cilantro leaves. Adjust the consistency of the sauce by adding more water. Cover the lid and let it cook for 20-30 minutes.

Step 9
Add tamarind paste and yogurt and jaggery. After 2-3 minutes mix well and add the chilies. Cook for 2 minutes and serve hot. Yummy mirchi ka salaan is ready.

Notes: You can add more or less water to make the right consistency of  sauce.

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The famous proverb "you are what you eat” as quoted by the French author Anthelme Brillat-Savarin is very true. Food nourishes you from the inside out. Good health is of utmost importance to me. Vegetarianism and Veganism are gaining immense popularity these days. Natural, organic, healthy and homemade is my mantra.

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