Now is the season for tender mangoes and tender cashews and time for harvesting pineapples and jack fruits and many more tropical fruits in our country. My parents had a couple of orchards that had beautiful mango and cashew trees. During my childhood, we used to get tender green mangoes and tender cashews from these orchards every year between February and April. Now-a-days i am not getting the opportunity to visit my parents' place due to work and other exigencies. So i miss the spring/summer festivities associated with crop harvests and resultant jubilant moments with my brothers and cousins and all the family members of my parerntal home. I got suddenly relived all those memories this week. Few days ago, we visited a nearby village and spent a day at a health resort thats just 60 km away from where we live. To my utter surprise and excitement, that resort is built in the middle of a fruit orchard with many fruit-bearing trees including cashew-nuts.I captured some snaps of that garden and plucked some green cashew fruits which are as yet ripened, containing tender cashew-nuts.
Method of separating cashew kernels from the fruit:
You may know that removing cashew kernels from cashew-fruit is a difficult task and also an elaborate process, where skill, care and concentration are required in equal measures, so as to keep the skin of fingers doesn't get burnt-off by the juices flowing from the plume. Irrespective of the care taken, one will find that the next day several patches of skin peels off where-ever the fruit's secretions touch. But the fun of working with cashew kernels is something one can only experience and feel!
Let me come to the point of the day!
Briefly stated, the process of separating cashew kernels from the fruit and later from the shell of the nut is like this: We have to cut into half the tender cashew shells vertically separating them into two halves. From these shells, we have to remove tender kernels using a semi-blunt kitchen knife to separate the outer shell from the inner white; so that the tender nut is dropped into water. Once separated from the shell, the kernel still has one thin layer of covering, this may be removed while keeping them in the cold water. Leave them in cold water for some time in a freshly taken bowl so that they become crisp. The result is tasty tender cashews.(In Telugu language, we call these tender cashews - pachchi jeedi pappulu).
My mother used to make a very delicious curry using jack-fruit and tender cashews spiced with tamarind juice and masalas. She also used to feed us with another delicious curry made with cabbage and tender cashew. I will write about them once i try making them all myself, trying to recall how my mom used to prepare these delectable recipes. Inspired by the nostalgia of my mom's dishes, as a tribute to her culinary skills and love, today, I thought of putting together a very special dish that i tasted in Puri(Orissa), which was made by the locals there, using tomato and green, tender cashews. I hope you all will like it and enjoy. While I am not sure whether it is possible to get hold of tender cashews, the countries and regions where this crop is grown, it will be possible to attempt.
Hi folks, before you look forward to the recipe, enjoy few views of extracting tender cashew kernels - what i call from farm to fork... err.... to knife and fork!!!
Full bloom Cashew tree with cashew fruits
Freshly plucked cahsew fruits and tender cashew nuts
After the first cut (into vertical halves with the outer shell )
de-shelled tender cashew kernels in cold water
Tender Cashew in Tomato Gravy or Korma:
- Tomato pieces 2 cups
- Freshly deshelled tender cashew nuts 1 cup (where tender cashews are difficult to obtain, use regular dry cashews, to get a relatively similar taste)
- Garam masala 1 tea spoon
- ginger garlic paste 1 tea spoon(here i used freshly grated ginger and garlic)
- cumin powder 1 tea spoon
- coriander powder 1 tea spoon
- red chilli powder 1 table spoon
- turmeric powder 1/2 tea spoon
- onions (cut into dices) 1/2 cup
- salt 1 table spoon
- sugar 1 tea spoon
- raisins 2 table spoons
- green chillies 2 (cut into long pieces)
- Bay leaf 1
- fresh milk or fresh cream 2 table spoons
- Vegetable oil 2 table spoons
- Coriander leaves,curry leaves few
- water 1/2 a cup
- Heat oil in a pan in a medium flame. Add ginger garlic paste and bay leaf and shallow fry for few min.Then add onions and green chillies and fry till onions become golden brown.
- Now add tomato pieces and raisins mix well and add little amount of water and cover with a lid and cook for 5 min.
- Remove lid and add salt,cumin powder,coriander powder,red chilli powder,sugar,garam masala and turmeric. Mix well and cook for 2min. in a high flame.
- Now bring the flame to sim/low, add tender cashews and mix well and cook for few more minutes. In case using regular dry cashews, a time of five minutes would be sufficient or till they turn soft in the curry gravy; once the cashews are cooked, add milk and bring to high flame for another two minutes and turn of the flame. Keep covered with a lid till ready for serving.
- Take it into serving bowl and decorate with coriander leaves.
- Serve with butter nan or roti or Puri or bread.
frying grated ginger,garlic,green chilies and curry leaves
added onions are frying
Added tomatoes,raisins and little amount of water
cooking korma with lid
adding masals in korma
adding tender cashew nuts
Adding cream into korma
This is the Result of Korma
Tender cashew tomato Korma Served with Puris