Cabbage-Onion Zunka is a quintessential Maharashtrian dish which is traditionally eaten with Bhakar, made from millets.
This cabbage-onion zunka is a part of the Indian Cooking Challenge. I had completely forgotten about it till today morning and scheduled another post for today.
Anyway, I finally managed to post this recipe today. So zunka, also spelt as jhunka is a traditional poor man’s food in Maharashtra. With besan for proteins and onions for taste, this dish is usually made with only two ingredients. Of course there are variations to it like adding cabbage or other vegetables to it. But traditionally, it is made from besan, spices and onions. Pair with the bhakar or the bhakri (millet based flatbread), this dish is wholesome and healthy.
If you have guests who come in unannounced, I would definitely recommend making this zunka, because it is so easy to make and gets done with just basic ingredients in the kitchen. In fact, all over Maharashtra, especially in Mumbai, you can see zunka bhakar stalls, which sell this dish for a minimum price, and these are extremely popular.
This dish is often accompanied by the thecha, which is a made from red chillies and garlic and is super spicy. But it is so delicious that you just can’t stop eating it!
When I made this at home, it was a big hit. We loved it and there was a little left next morning and I made stuffed paranthas with it which was an even bigger hit. So much so, that N has told me that whenever I make zunka next, I have to make extra for the next day paranthas.
Now that is a great idea isn’t it? The paranthas are a bit like the missi rotis of Punjab. Now that is what I call, eating two dishes with one recipe 🙂
Recipe Adapted from here
- 1 cup cabbage Grated (using the large grater)
- 2 onion chopped
- 1/2 cup Besan gram flour
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- to taste Chilli salt (but I think it will taste good only slightly spicy) powder and
- coriander leaves for garnishing
- Dry roast besan in a heavy bottom pan until it slightly changes color and leaves a lovely aroma (Don't over do it, while I was cooking it, there was a call that came and I roasted it little more than I would like too and hence the little dark color).
- Cook cabbage in some water either in microwave or on stove.
- Drain the water and keep the cabbage aside.
- Heat oil in a pan (I used a wide non stick pan and thought it was useful) and add mustard and cumin seeds to it and let it splutter.
- Add chopped onions fry until it changes color. Add cooked cabbage, red chilli powder, besan and mix well.
- At this point, lumps will start forming start breaking them.
- Cook on low flame till the besan completely cooks and you have a dry sabzi ready,