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India is a country where vegetables are cooked in various ways using different ingredients. They are made in the form of dry vegetables or vegetable curries. Many times eggs and cottage cheese are also used for making delicious combinations. The general name of all these preparations is commonly known as 'Sabji' in India.
In this article we will learn the preparation of common Indian egg sabji using microwave cooking. One can of course make it using conventional cooking ways also.
Some basics of microwave cooking
Indian vegetables can be easily cooked in the conventional ways on a gas stove or hot plate using the appropriate metallic cooking vessel. But most of them including this particular vegetable (Egg sabji) can also be made using a glass bowl or microwave compatible bowl used as a cooking vessel for keeping inside the microwave.
Many of us use microwave only for heating the food and do not know much about its utility as a perfect cooking alternative. So, we will go through some general and basic information in this regard before using a microwave for preparing this dish.
Microwave has generally 4 or 5 cooking intensity ranges starting from very high to very low. So, most of them will have ranges like very high, high, medium, low, and very low. Some microwave cookers come with menu and are driven by the program inside and depending on the menu selected the cooker will choose the range automatically. For cooking vegetables one can use very high or high heat option. As per my experience it is better to use high position so that the chances of getting the food burnt or charred due to wrong water proportions in very high position are reduced. So, using high position is a precautionary thing which many housewives will love to prefer.
The golden rule for using the microwave is that never forget to add the required quantity of water in the dish before putting it inside the microwave for cooking. If there is any doubt then one should stop the microwave in between at suitable intervals and check the dish and add little water if so needed.
One of the most important thing in microwave cooking, especially for preparing a finished dry vegetable, is that one has to mix a calculated quantity of water in the vegetable before cooking it and it should be sufficient to cook it and evaporate in the process so that the dish becomes just dry as planned. This of course comes with experience but if one is preparing a dry vegetable for 2-3 people then on an average 1 medium cup of water is sufficient to make the finished dish dry as required. However depending on the type of vegetable this would require some caliberation.
Anyway, we are preparing the Egg sabji in a curry form so we do not worry for this aspect as we will be adding enough water in this so the question of burning or charring does not arise in this particular recipe.
Those who are not comfortable with microwave cooking can always go for the traditional saute and cook mode using their own basic culnery skills.
The following quantity of ingredients will suffice for 2-3 persons and the quantity can be increased for more people, if required, accordingly.
The dish takes about 30-35 minutes time in getting ready which includes time for boiling the eggs and potato also.
- Eggs (hen) - 2 Nos.
- Potato - 1 No.
- Tomato - 3 Nos.
- Onion - 2 Nos.
- Garlic cloves - 8 Nos.
- Green coriander leaves - 1/2 cup.
- Ginger - 1/2 inch piece.
- Bay leaf - 2 Nos.
- Clove - 2 Nos.
- Red Chilli whole - 1 No. (Optional).
- Whole black pepper - 6 to 8 Nos.
- Star anise - few (3 to 4) broken pieces.
- Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp.
- Kasuri methi (dry Fenugreek leaves) - 1/2 tsp.
- Coriander powder - 1 tsp.
- Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp.
- Mango powder - 1 tsp.
- Black pepper powder - 1/2 tsp.
- Red chilli powder - 1/2 tsp (Optional).
- Sugar - 1/2 tsp.
- Cooking oil - 1 tbsp.
- Salt - as per taste.
Boil the eggs and potato fully immersed in water in a pan. They can be boiled together also. It takes 10 to 12 minutes time in that. Meanwhile peel the onions, garlic cloves, and ginger. Chop onions, tomato, garlic, green coriander leaves and ginger. Break whole red chilli in 3-4 parts and discard the seeds. Keep all of the items aside.
Once eggs and potato are boiled, peel them and cut in wedges. Normally we make 6 wedge pieces of each boiled egg as well as the boiled potato. If one likes a thick curry then boiled potato can be finely meshed.
Take a microwave bowl and pour 1 tbsp cooking oil in it. Add chopped onion, garlic cloves, ginger, and green coriander leaves. Then add whole black pepper, black pepper powder, cumin seeds, cloves, chilli pieces, star anise pieces, bay leaves, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, kasuri methi, coriander powder, and salt to it and mix with a spatula or spoon. Keep the bowl in the microwave and cook it in second heat position for 3-4 minutes. This is equivalent to sauteing in conventional cooking. This should not be done for more than 3-4 minutes time as that may charr the onions and other items in it. If one wants that onion is to be made brown then one can keep heating only for a half of a minute more. It will often require to stop and open the door of microwave to check the status.
Stop the microwave, open the door, and take out the bowl. Now add chopped tomatoes to it and cook in the same heat position for 3-4 minutes. Again, take out the bowl and now add potato pieces (or meshed potato) and egg pieces. Add mango powder, sugar, and 4 to 5 medium cups of water. Now keep the bowl inside the microwave and cook in second heat range for 5 to 6 minutes.
Open microwave door and check for consistency and add some water, if required, and cook for another 1-2 minutes and the dish is ready.
Decoration and serving
Once the dish is ready it can be transferred to the porcelain or bone china bowl and can be decorated with grated cheese, green coriander leaves, white cream etc by lining and designing them on the dish surface.
The dish can be served in medium bowls and can be consumed with bread, chapati, or rice.
Those who are health concious can reduce the quantity of cooking oil and avoid adding potato to the dish.
The quantity of the dish prepared with above instructions will be about 5 to 6 medium cups and assuming that we serve half a cup at one time as one serving, the total numbers of servings would be around 11 and from nutritional calculations I get a value of about 45 calories per serving which is pretty average value in our routine foods we take.
Common Indian Egg Sabji (simple egg curry) is an easy item to be prepared using only two main ingredients as eggs and tomatoes and goes well as one of the main dishes during the meal times. The Indian spices used in this dish give it the ethnic Indian/Asian taste and many people across the globe like its favour.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Umesh Chandra Bhatt