During the grueling travelling period of my engineering days there was once in a while some respite that we friends used to get when our respective granny’s provided us with pit stops. Most of us had the granny’s house mid way between home and college. If you know what it means to travel from Vashi to Santacruz via harbor line then you can empathize with our plights. So although my dadi who stayed at chembur was providing me with some dry snacks and chivdas which was useful to munch on trains, a friend’s nani used to call us over whenever she made the lip smacking handvo at her place. Like hungry wolves we used to devour it all down .

Luckily for me, my MIL makes equally good handvo(handva is the slang). I learnt this dish from her immediately.  Handvo is a savoury cake that is also eaten for dinner when you are looking for some respite from the regular 4 dish meals. It has al lthe nutritions of a complete meal and can easily be classified as one pot meal. I am not aware of the variations for this dish in terms of the dals or pulses or the vegetables. I am too fond of this dish just this way to think of alternatives.

Ingredients for 4 people’s dinner
2 cups broken rice (avoid basmati as far as possible)
1 cup of Split Pigeon Peas/ Red Gram
2 cup peeled and  grated bottle gourd
1 cup sour beaten curd
2-3 green chillies
1 ½ inch ginger
2 tspn white sesame seeds (optional)
1 tspn fruit salt (Eno 1 packet)
1 tspn turmeric powder
salt to taste
For tempering
1 tspn white sesame seeds
1 tspn mustard seeds
2-3 sprigs of curry leaves
1 pinch of asafoetida
2 tbsp Oil
1) Soak the rice and dal separately for 4-6 hours.

2) Grind it using the curd to little water to make a batter of Idli batter consistency.
3) Also grind the chillies and ginger and add to the batter- I grind this with the last batch of the rice/ dal mixture.
4) Add grated bottle gourd and  salt to the mixture and mix well. Add the sesame seeds in the batter. Refrigerate at this stage if you wish to use it later.
5) In a thick bottomed pan, which has a relatively large base and also not very deep, heat some oil.
6) Add the mustard seeds and let them splutter, now add the sesame seeds, asafoetida and curry leaves.
7) Mix in fruit salt in the batter and  pour it in the pan. Cover the pan and let it cook on medium heat. After around 12-15 min. A thick crust would be formed at the bottom. And the centre should be thick and not runny.

8) Flip over using a large spatula and maybe a plate to support. This can be tricky so ask for help at this stage.

9) Cooking it for another 10 minutes until the mixture is well cooked in the centre.
10) Serve with curd, green chutney or even tomato ketchup


Kavi said…
hmm.. really interesting! never heard of this before!
Kavi | Edible Entertainment
@Kavi - Is it Kavi? You shud give it a try..its like a savoury cake with much lesser hassles to make. I have even done it in oven- like we do cakes- same technique except that you need to add a couple of teaspoon of oil to keep the interiors moist. Also, loved your space too

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