It’s afternoon in June. Kids are on summer vacation, and not a single person out on the streets. It’s so hot here I wish it would rain – not so much for us because we have seen it.:) But for the in-laws, who came all the way from Nandyala to escape the heat and expecting some cold US weather.
Well, what can we do? Instead of moping around mumbling “it’s hot, it’s too hot …”, we decided to put the sun power to some culinary use. We started making traditional majjiga mirapa, vadiyalu and appadaalu.
What is that you ask? Let’s begin the series with Majjiga Mirapa. Telugu to ingleesh translation: sun-dried yogurt chillies. In Hindi, dahi mirchi.
How to: Pick slender and straight looking green chillies. I used fresh cayenne peppers for today’s recipe. with a sharp knife, slit the chilli in middle on one side. Keep the ends and the stem intact. Prepare all the chillies this way.
Take homemade Indian yogurt in a wide vessel. Add salt to yogurt. For a cup of yogurt, at least two tablespoons salt is needed. Add the slit chillies and soak them in salted yogurt for three to four days. Chillies should be covered completely with salted yogurt.
Stir the chillies two or three times a day for uniform coating. Do not cover the vessel at any stage. The acid in yogurt preserves the chillies and bleaches them to white. Chilli taste also changes from pure hot to a mix of sour, salty and spicy.
On the fourth day, remove the chillies from yogurt. Place them on a thick cotton cloth, under hot Sun for drying. It would take usually one or two days for them to completely dry. Bring the chillies inside during night, and keep under Sun during day time. Sun-dry until they are completely moisture-free. Store in a jar. They stay fresh for upto a year.
To Cook: Heat a cup of peanut oil and deep-fry majjiga mirapa to golden. We usually enjoy them with rice and dal /sambar/rasam or yogurt.
The taste: Sour, salty and spicy… very flavorful and addictive. One can’t help but say, “Salutation oh supreme Sun. May your shiny rays warm upon on our food always.”
Here are the Majjiga Mirapa Making in Images:
Chillies in Salted Indian Yogurt
Chillies Drying Under Hot Sun ~ Day One
Do you have this type of traditional culinary sun salutations? Do you practice?