Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Malaai ki Subz ....from my Mom.

A good cook is one who not only makes great food, but makes food taste great with what is available at hand.”
-- My late Nani ji
(the greatest cook I have known from close quarters, followed closely by mum)

That’s my maternal grand ma for you. I have discussed at length about her in few of my earlier posts, like this one.
She was the first one who instilled in me the desire to enter the kitchen and cook up delicacies in a jiffy with local stuff, food that enticed all the senses of sight, sound, smell, taste and feel.

We talk about plating dishes now, but she had taught her daughter and grand-daughter about presentation a long time ago. You would want to eat all that she dished out.
My mother being her direct descendant has inculcated the same skills and has obviously (like all future generations) has improved upon them. This is one such dish—
Malaai ki Subz.

I don’t know how many of you out there, collect the malaai (cream) of milk; like my mom I have been in the habit of collecting the milk’s cream/malaai.
It serves two purposes…
1) this makes the milk you drink comparatively less in fats.
2) also, you don’t have to but tetra packs of fresh cream , when you have it in your fridge at all times.

Like most of my dishes this one too has a story. It was when I was in standard eleventh (I guess), when in my ever varying tween moods I had given impromptu invitations to two of my buddies for lunch, without even informing my mum( read designated chef).

Anyways I did surprise my mum with my two friends. I didn’t have to tell her that they would be staying for lunch, for in my home it was a given that guests would be fed as if there was a gala party. So while mum had made lunch only for me, she had to check the pantry and the fridge to come up with something quick for all of us hungry souls.

It was then that this subzi was born. It was made with malaai/ milk cream and some aromatic Indian spices. And with a few veggies thrown in, the malaai was well disguised (urrgghh ! how we hated malaai back then), and the dish lip smackingly good.

I made this dish today, for lunch, as I wanted something tasty yet simple with no elaborate preparations. After which I called mom to tell her that she has taught me so much while not actually saying a word. Thanks Maa!!

Malaai ki Subz
4 tbsp malaai/milk cream
a pinch of cumin
2 tbsp chopped onion
1 medium sized potato, boiled and cubed
2 tbsp chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp carrot, diced
2 tbsp frozen peas
1 tbsp green bell-pepper/capsicum, diced
½ tsp ginger-garlic paste
a pinch of garam masala ( an indian spice mix)
½ tsp chopped green chillies
1 tsp cooking oil
salt to taste

In a wok, heat oil, and add cumin seeds. Once they splutter add the chopped onions and sweat them a little.
Now add the tomatoes, carrots, capsicum, peas and chillies . Add the ginger-garlic paste and garam masala. Add salt as desired. Cook covered for half a minute, stirring occasionally.
Finally add the boiled potatoes and milk cream. Stir well.
Serve hot with parathas/ chapattis.

I share this with Mahimaa for her 15 minutes cooking event, and with EC for her WYF Quick Meal event.


  1. I am sure it must be delicious with roties . Looks really yumm.

  2. I love both my grandmothers, both taught me a lot about everything! :)

    Malai dish looks very elegant, great recipe. Thanks for posting Navita, kids would love the Malai taste!

  3. Wow..that is a creamy one..looks lovely, thanks

  4. Yummy dish navita, love that you collect cream at home..

  5. I love malaai ki sabzi, looks delicious and yummy... Infact there are kitchen legacies that have been handed over from generations and its so nice and proud to be a part of...

  6. yummy sabji..my mom too prepares similar veggie using malai :)

  7. That quote is precious to remember always Navi..true and honest to the core !!
    and this subz is unique and i love to try this..bookmarking.Thanks

  8. Yummy flavours here...how do you collect malaai?

  9. I really have to get myself out there and stock up on spices, I love everything you make on here, I have not tried to cook it myself but I can live through you vicariously.

  10. I love the quote! I was just faced with that situation in the kitchen myself. This looks spicy and delicious! Our mothers are our best teachers!

  11. Wow..this is truly a lip smacking dish, Navita!
    Tks for sharing..quick n do-able! Tks a ton!

  12. Thanks guys...must say that our moms have had the most influence in the quitest ways...our best friends when we didn't know whats a best friend. :)

  13. This not only looks delicious but sounds so easy to make too! Great one Navita! :-)

  14. looks delicious and creamy..from next time, i am going to collect the malai from the milk..thats a good idea..

  15. Simple and easy to make.. Looks delicious!

  16. Thank you for sharing the story and the delicious dish! Perfect for a busy weekday and sound excellent!

  17. Mmmm...The malai ki sabzi looks delicious and would taste great too, I;m sure!
    And guess what, my Ma always says the same words as your GrandMom...that a good cook would manage to dish out delicious stuff with whatever was readily available...

  18. Delicious and creamy dish..looks gorgeous!

  19. Looks inviting. Sounds simple tooo... will try sometime.

  20. yummy entry... love this one. even my mom used to collect malai.. but not anymore.

  21. It sounds like you had the best of teachers in your Mom and Grandma :)

  22. Navita this sounds delicious and easy to make.

  23. Hi, thanks for stopping by my blog to comment on the no-knead bread. I've enjoyed reading some of your entries. I just took an Indian cooking class with a James Beard chef. It was fun but wow! I don't have all the spices I need at home to try out the recipes at home, but it was really fun.

  24. Very creamy and tasty ur dish!

  25. Oh wow what a creamy indulgence....


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