Friday, February 20, 2015

Edamame Ghugra | Oven Baked Low Fat Recipe

Ghugra is a classic tea time snack in India. Savory Ghugras are typically made with green peas or green beans and deep fried. Sweet versions, know in the North as Gujiya are stuffed with Khoya (milk solids), coconut, cardamon, nuts, and dried fruits. They are especially popular during Holi or the Festival of Colors celebrated every year in Spring.

In fact with Holi just round the corner, its time to prepare some delicious festive treats. This year I decided to begin with preparing a Savoury Ghugra with edamame. To make this delicious treat healthy and guilt free, I also decided to bake it. The trick with baking Indian style snacks is to get the dough just right. You don't want it too tough and you don't want it too flaky either. In the recipe below, I combined maida and atta with some ghee for a dough that will be rolled out thin and will give a pastry with crispness and crunch.

Ingredients for the Dough:
1 cup atta (Indian Chappati Flour)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tbsp ghee (clarified butter)
1/4 tsp hing (asafoetida)
Salt to taste
1 tsp oil, for kneading

For the Filling:
2 cups edamame beans
1/2 cup grated coconut, fresh
1 tsp ginger, grated
1 tbsp oil
1/4 tsp hing (asafoetida)
1/2 tsp jeera (cumin seeds)
Salt to taste
1 tsp sugar
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped fine
1 tsp til (sesame seeds)
1-2 tbsp lemon juice

For Baking:
1 tsp oil


Make the Dough:
  1. Combine all the ingredients together in a bowl and add enough water to make a firm dough. Keep aside covered for 15 minutes.
  2. Knead again using oil til smooth. Keep aside covered with a wet muslin cloth.
Make the stuffing:
  1. Blend the green peas in a mixer to a coarse paste. Keep aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a pan, add the cumin seeds, ginger, and asafoetida.
  3. When the seeds crackle, add the green peas paste and saute on a gentle heat for a couple of minutes stirring continuously.
  4. Sprinkle 2 tbsp water, mix, cover, and cook on a low heat for 5 to 7 minutes.
  5. Remove the lid, saute till the mixture becomes dry. Cool for 5 minutes.
  6. Add the sugar, coconut, cilantro, sesame seeds, lemon juice and salt and mix well. Cool completely.
Put it Together:
  1. Divide the prepared dough into 16 equal portions.
  2. Take one, roll into a ball, flatten with the palm of your hand. 
  3. Next roll it out into a circle about 3" in diameter.
  4. Place a heaping tablespoonful of the stuffing in the center. 
  5. Fold the circle in half, pinch edges to seal.
  6. Set on a baking tray.
  7. Repeat for the rest of the dough.
  8. Preheat the oven to 400 F. Brush all the ghugra with oil.
  9. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until crisp and gently browned.
  10. Enjoy hot with your favorite chutney.

Nut Free Recipe
Vegan Substitute: Replace the ghee in this recipe with an equal quantity of oil.

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