Parval Aloo and memories of Nani’s Home.

Growing up in a primarily vegetarian household in the heart of UP meant vegetables were always an intrinsic part of our meals. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, nothing was complete without a sabzi. It could be the aloo ki sabzi in the tiffin, or bhindi fry for lunch; palak ki daal for dinner, or gajar ka halwa for dessert — vegetables were eaten everyday and in various forms.

I was not really averse to my sabzi but I did not love the kaddus and toris either, lauki ran out of my throat, tinda was only eaten bharwan. What I did love was Parval. It was neither squishy, nor pulpy, but a nice looking vegetable that retained its texture and shape even after it was cooked.

There was a problem though. It was not eaten in my dadi’s family and since we lived in this large joint family, it was hardly ever made at home. And so I longed for it all year.

I found my yearly dose of parval at my nani’s place. When we went there for the summer vacations. Summer happens to be prime time for parval, so that worked too. And so, afternoon after afternoon I ate Sukhe Parval-Aloo with dal,roti and chawal. It was made every day only for me.

I carried my love for Parval to my home after marriage too. Incidentally, husband, who is an avid sabzi eater, doesn’t like it too. If at all, he wants his with a lot of masala (Bengalis I tell you!). I eat it almost without any. Once again, prioritizing my love over my convenience, I gave up making the sabzi. I’d eat it at my mother’s and be happy.

But then I realized it’s not fair — not having something you love so much, only because another person does not. So, now I cook Parval all through the season, only for myself.

With #sabziTarkariDin I thought I’d share my recipe with you too.

Ingredients:

Parval sliced: 5-6 nos.

Potatoes Sliced: 1-2

Onions Sliced: – 1

Methi dana: 4-5 nos.

Turmeric: 1/2 teaspoon

Chilli Powder: 1/2 teaspoon, or as you prefer

Salt: To taste.

Mustard Oil: 2-3 tablespoon

Method.

In a kadhai smoke the mustard oil and add methi dana. As it turns brown, add sliced onion, stir.

Add the Parval and Potatoes, stir.

Add the turmeric and salt, stir and cover.

Let the Sabzi cook for 8-10 mins, stir a few times in between and add a few drops of water if needed.

When the potatoes are almost done, sprinkle the chilli powder and stir well. Cook for about 5 more minutes until nice and crisp. Serve hot with dal, rice, or parathas.

*

Do try and tell me how it turned out.

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