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by Richa Mittal
Phara, a recipe made from chana dal and rice, is generally prepared in eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. It is steam cooked and therefore very healthy. It is served with green and imli ki chutney.
The recipe is a complete meal in itself as it has both proteins and carbohydrates. The accompaniments fill for vitamins and minerals.
To make phara
Clean and soak chana dal. Grind rice. Make a dough with rice powder. Now grind the soaked daal with ginger, garlic and green chillies. Add salt to taste in the dal mixture. Make four or five balls with rice dough and with dal mixture. Press the rice dough ball flat with your hands and place the dal ball on it. Fold the rice dough so as to cover the dal ball. Similarly prepare all the four or five pharas. Steam cook them in pressure cooker or any other suitable deep cooking vessel for half-an-hour or 45 minutes. When cool, cut them into slices. Arrange the slices on a plate.
Heat mustard oil in a ladle, add heeng, mustard seeds, till seeds and when they start spluttering pour the tadka on the phara slices. Garnish with grated fresh coconut and green corriander leaves. Serve with the green and imli chutney.
To make green chutney
Grind corriander leaves, green chillies fine. Add salt and lemon juice and mix well.
To make imli ki chutney
Wash and soak ripe red tamarinds in water. With your hands press and remove the tamarind seeds and peels and strain the tamarind pulp. Heat this pulp with gur, black rock salt and roasted cumin powder till it is of the desired consistency.
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