This is modern Kashmiri cuisine that tracks its history to 15th century when Timur ( a Turco-Mongol conqueror) invaded India which led to the migration of 1700 skilled woodcarvers, weavers, architects, calligraphers and cooks from Samarkand to the valley of Kashmir.
The cuisine developed and evolved in the land of dreamers, poets, artists, emperors. Using the native plants and vegetables infused with spices produces beautiful delicacies to inspire your senses
Lotus is an amazing plant that rises from the mud and offers leaves, roots, flowers and seeds which are edible. It has special mystical significance for Buddhists and many non Buddhists.
Nadru or Lotus stems/roots are a delicious curious vegetable very popular in Kashmir and are often fried and served as a street snack food.
The stem is very low in Saturated Fat and Cholesterol. It is also a good source of Dietary Fiber, Thiamin, Vitamin B6, Phosphorus, Potassium, Copper and Manganese, and a very good source of Vitamin C.
With this dish there can be different ways of cooking, some households will simply cook these vegetables with green chilies and no spices which showcases the lotus stems and turnips in an exquisite manner. Other households may fry them and then use spices to sauté after frying. My version is somewhere in the middle and just the way we like it in our home.
The ingredients are simple and the recipe is simple. I always use a pressure cooker with root vegetables as it locks in the ingredient and saves time but you can use a heavy bottomed pan. Fat pieces of the lotus stem work best in this dish. Do make sure to rinse them well after slicing to remove any hidden soil in the crevices.
- 2 pieces of Lotus roots ( about 8 – 12 inches in size)
- 2 Turnips
- 3 green chilies
- Pinch of asafetida or Hing
- 1/2 to 1 tsp Kashmiri red chili powder
- 1 tsp fennel powder
- 1 tsp ginger powder
- Salt to taste
- 1 tbsp mustard oil
- Water 1- 2 cups where needed
- Wash and peel the turnips and cut in 1 inch thick cubes. Slice the green chilies.
- Cut the Nadru in 1/2 to 3/4 inch diagonal thick slices and wash thoroughly
- Heat mustard oil in a pressure cooker. Add asafetida and then add Turnips & Lotus Root .
- Stir and fry for about 5 mins and Add the green chilis and salt
- Add about a cup of water and Pressure cook for about 10 mins. If you are using an instant pot, you may want to reduce the water to 3/4 of a cup.
- Release the pressure from the cooker and then add red chili, fennel and ginger powder and sauté on medium heat for 5 minutes or so. You should be able to smell the beautiful spices and the turnips will be very soft. Add water as needed to get a gravy.
- Serve on top of white rice and yoghurt
Other Kashmiri Recipes
- Kashmiri Achar
- Gogji Nadir ( Lotus Stem with Turnips)
- Shalgam Sabzi ( Turnips)
- Haakh – Kashmiri Collard Greens
- Gand Chetin – Kashmiri Onion Chutney
- Kashmiri Phool Yakhni – Cauliflower in Yogurt sauce
- Kashmiri Chutney – Dodh AL ( Bottle Gourd in Yoghurt)
- Vost Haakh t, Nadir ( Lotus stems with Amaranth leaves)
- Haakh Tchaman- Kashmiri Cheese and Greens
- Kokur Roganjosh