When I say vegetarian fish, its the way this unique dish is presented. Making use of cabbage leaves to make rolls filled with a besan(chick pea flour) paste, and then deep fried , causing the cabbage to look like the skin of a fish.
Many years ago, I found this recipe in THE VEGETARIAN COOK BOOK BY SADHU VASWANI CENTER. Over the years I have made this dish frequently and with good results. It does require a little extra time, but the results are worth it.😊
Besan ki sabji is made in many different ways, the Rajhasthani people call it gaathe ki sabji, where in besan is mixed with spices, oil and water to form a dough, which is then made into small balls or cylindrical logs. These balls are then boiled in water , to be cooked and then added to delicious gravies.
We sindhis also make a delicious besan sabji, called besan ji ani. But the shape given to the dough is normally like small tikkis. These tikkis or anis are either steamed or fried, and added to different gravies.And the gravy to go with this is normally a seyal onion tomato one. Seyal gravy normally lets the onions turn just a light golden instead of brown. Its one of the basic gravies sindhis use.
The recipe I will share with you today uses besan and cabbage leaves. Do try this delicious sabji with hot phulkas…
Ingredients for the rolls
5 cabbage leaves, thick vein removed.
1 cup besan( chickpea flour)
2 tbsps chopped onion
1 tsp whole corriander seeds
1 tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp red chillie powder
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tbsps chopped corriander leaves
1/4th to 1/3 rd cup water
Thread to tie the rolls..
Soften the cabbage leaves by putting them in boiling water for a minute. Remove and pat dry.
Mix the besan, cumin seeds, red chilli powder, salt, corriander seeds and onions along with the water to make a thick paste.
Take a cabbage leaf, apply the besan paste, roll up the leaf and tie with a thread to keep it secured.
Deep fry the cabbage rolls, discard the thread and keep aside.
The cabbage after being fried looks like the skin of fish…hence the name.
Ingredients for the seyal gravy
2 finely chopped onions
3 tomatoes pureed
1 tbsp chopped garlic
1 tbsps chopped ginger
1/2 cup yogurt
1 tsp turmeric powder
2 tsps red chilli powder
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp salt
1 tsp shah jeera…caraway seeds
1/2 tsp ajwain
Heat 2 tbsps oil in a pan, add onions and salt .
When onions turn a pale golden brown, add cumin seeds and ajwain, and ginger, garlic.
Saute well, add red chilli powder, turmeric and garam masala.
Now add pureed tomatoes and let cook for a while, when oil seperates, add beaten curd and chopped corriander leaves.
After 5 mins, add the fried cabbage rolls.
Cover and cook for 5 mins.
Serve hot with phulkas.