I have a recipe for a pomegranate leaf kadhi – I found it in Shyamala Kallianpur’s book ‘Cooking With Green Leafy Vegetables’.
When it came round to me to host AFAM-Pomegranate, started by Maheswari of Beyond the Usual, I blithely announced the fruit without much idea of what recipe(s) I would come up with and went off to Japan, but the presence of a pomegranate plant/bush in my compound waved me on reassuringly.
Late last night, at a loose end, I leafed through the book, and found out this kadhi required coconut. Which I don’t stock. And I’d gotten into one of those moods where I had to get it over with.
I had long ago decided the plucking of the leaves would be a covert operation under the cover of night – don’t want any funny looks from the neighbours, nor questions – but I’d forgotten to pluck the leaves, and I’d changed out of my work clothes. I changed back into my day clothes, went down with the white cup you see in the second photo and skulked under the pomegranate plant/bush trying to pick half a cup of leaves.
Problem! The recipe asked for young and tender leaves - and the plant/bush mostly had leaves that various plant-dependent creatures had feasted on. It was also located in a dark corner of the building, so yours truly couldn’t see the young and tender ones too well if they existed at all - but she was on a roll - so she quickly got herself as many unblemished ones as she could find and hightailed it back to her apartment.
She substituted the coconut with a handful of cashewnuts and a cup of coconut milk, and faltered several more times during the making of the recipe, but will not bore you with those details. Suffice it to say that it tastes like sol kadhi, bringing back the memories of a trip to Goa almost a year ago!
The pomegranate leaves aid digestion and is an ideal remedy for a bout of indigestion, says the author.
Here’s how I bumbled through the recipe:
½ cup tender leaves of pomegranate (chopped) – I didn’t chop them.
1 cup fresh grated coconut (I used a handful of cashews, soaked, and 200 ml of coconut milk)
A lime-sized ball of tamarind (I soaked it a little ahead)
2 flakes of garlic
4-5 red chillies (roasted)
Salt, to taste
1 tspn ghee (clarified butter)
8 flakes of garlic, crushed
Cook the leaves in a little water.
Grind together cashews, tamarind, garlic and chillies to a smooth paste.
Add the leaves to the paste and grind again.
Put this paste in a pan, add some water to give it a pouring consistency.
Add salt and bring to a boil, stirring well. Do not allow it to rise and boil over.
To temper, heat the ghee, add the crushed garlic, sauté and add to the kadhi. Cover the pan immediately. Serve hot with rice.
And the pomegranate arils you see in the cup – that is artistic licence, you don’t really need to do that. I was lucky they even showed up – because they initially sank to the bottom of the kadhi when I was setting up the shot!
Googling led me to this bit of info unexpectedly - now let's find a way to use this minus the cashews and the coconut milk!
AFAM Pomegranate Pomegranate Leaves Kadhi Cashew Coconut Milk Humour