Mirchi ka Salan

Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Even though I have seen several versions of Mirchi ka Salan around in the blog world, I haven't really tasted it myself. I only knew it was really spicy because of the jalapenos or peppers present in the curry. We happened to taste this in an Indian restaurant one weekend and got hooked to its taste. I knew, i had to make it at home and got a bunch of jalapeno peppers just to make this curry. I adapted this recipe according to our tastes and it turned out to be truly delicious. this recipe is a keeper.

This is a specialty of the cuisine of Andhra which is famous for all its spicy stuff starting from biryani to pickles. Whole chillies or pepper are pan fried in oil and then added to a thick gravy made with a mixture of sesame and peanuts which mellows down the spice level of the peppers making it tolerable to eat!I removed the inner seeds of the jalapenos to reduce the heat level. If you want the curry to be really really spicy, go ahead and leave the seeds in there at your own discretion!

Jalapenos/Chillies/Peppers (any variety) - 6
Red chilli powder - 1/2 teaspoon
Coriander powder - 1 teaspoon
Turmeric powder - 1 teaspoon
Cumin/Jeera powder - 1 teaspoon
Tamarind pulp - from a lemon sized ball of tamarind
Oil - 2 spoons

To grind into a smooth paste
Peanuts - 1/2 cup
Sesame seeds - 2 tablespoons
Onions - 1/2 chopped
Ginger garlic paste - 1 teaspoon
Cinnamon - 1/2 inch
Cloves - 3 to 4

For the tadka/tempering
Oil - 1 teaspoon
Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
Jeera/cumin seeds - 1 teaspoon
Methi/fenugreek seeds - 1/4 teaspoon
Curry leaves - a few

  • First prepare the jalapenos. Slit the jalapenos from the bottom about half way keeping the stem/stalk intact. Carefully remove the pith present in the center of the peppers along with the seeds. Take care to wash your hands immediately after handling the peppers to avoid hand burns.
  • In a wide skillet, add the oil. Once the oil turns hot, add the prepared peppers. Immediately cover with a lid because the oil starts spluttering outside. After about a minute, open the lid and give the peppers a turn. Cover and cook for two more minutes until the peppers have charred a little bit and the skin turns color. Remove the peppers and keep them aside.
  • Grind the ingredients listed into a smooth paste adding a little water.
  • In a saucepan/kadai, heat the oil for tempering and add the mustard seeds, jeera, methi and curry leaves one by one. Add the charred jalapeno peppers, chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, turmeric powder and the ground paste. Also add the tamarind pulp. Add about 1 cup or required quantity of water and required amount of salt to taste.
  • Cover and allow the gravy to simmer for around 12 to 15 minutes. The gravy should thicken and soak the jalapeno peppers with all the goodness!

Garnish with cilantro.

Serve along with chapatis, rotis, naan, plain rice or pulaos. Also tastes great with curd rice!!

Ready for some spice in your life?

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