Chill out with this hot raita

Besan,†mirchi and dahi, the time-tested trio to combat summer heat,
join hands to make a dish that is colourful and easy to prepare

SOME like it hot, even in the height of summer. Well, truth be told, this isnít a scorcher or palate singer. The recipe packs all the benefits of chillies that stoke a sluggish appetite and help the digestive system and so on but the pungency is beautifully tempered by sweet curds.

The dish is colourful, quickly fixed and the besan lends it some body and bouquet. You can treat it as a raita or a thandi sabzi. The lady who gifted us this recipe was from Rajasthan and sang paeans of praise claiming that the ingredients besan,`A0mirchi and dahi were the trio time-tested to combat and defeat heat. Isnít karhi and khata for that matter not an irresistible temptation when we lose our cool as the days heat up?

We didnít pick up the gauntlet then but decided to test the proof of the proverbial pudding. Well, we have since sent a letter of thanks to our host acknowledging our debt for this gem.

Besani  mirch  ka  raita†

Curd (whisked) 200 ml

Plump red chillies (long variety) two

Plump green chillies (long variety) two

Besan 2 tbsp

Jeera powder Ĺ tsp

Red chilli powder ľ tsp

Oil 2 tbsp

Salt to taste

Wipe clean the chillies and cut into about 1 inch long round pieces. Prepare a batter of thick pouring-consistency with besan. Blend the salt and powdered spices in the batter. Heat oil in a pan and put in the chillies. After stir-frying for 30 seconds, pour in the batter and keep stirring briskly. The chillies should be well coated with batter but not resemble pakora or mirchi bada! Cook till the besan exudes a pleasant well done aroma. Remove from flame and cool. Then put in a bowl and mix with curd. Treat yourself and the guests perhaps in reverse order.