A Simple Meal

Some days you just feel like having a simple meal. And yesterday, I asked my neighbour from Rajasthan the recipe to something she makes everyday. Rotla, dal and dudhi (bottle gourd) sabzi.

  • 1 1/2 cups of wheat flour
  • Water
  • 2-3 tsp oil
  • 2-3 tsp ghee
  • Salt to taste

  • Knead all ingredients except for ghee to form a dough. Don't add a lot of water, the dough should be a little hard, not as smooth as for chapatti. Knead till most of the cracks are filled.
  • Roll out the dough into one thick, flat circle. Make small cuts on one side using a knife.
  • Heat a shallow iron tava and roast the rotla on it. This could take a while.
  • Once, one side is done make impressions using your fingers on the uncooked side and flip it over.
  • Cook it till it turns red and serve with lots of ghee and dal.
A quarter of a rotla with dal can easily be a meal for one person.


2 cups split moong dal
3 cups water
A pinch of asafoetida
Handful of curry leaves
2 tomatoes diced
1/2 tsp aamchoor (dry mango powder)
1/2 tsp mutard
1/2 tsp jeera (cumin seeds)
3-4 cloves of garlic chopped
2 green chillies chopped
1/2 tsp red chili powder

  • Soak dal in water one hour prior to cooking it. If you are running short of time, you can also cook it directly in a pressure cooker for 3-4 whistles.
  • Once the dal is cooked, heat oil in a pan, add mustard, jeera, garlic, green chilies and curry leaves.
  • Cook it for two minutes and add tomatoes, asafoetida, aamchoor, salt and red chili powder. Cook for 3-4 minutes and add this mixture to the dal.

Semi dry bottle gourd curry (dudhi subzi)
One medium sized bottle gourd diced.
One tomato diced
1 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
2 green chillies split into half.
1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds
1/2 tsp kalonji (onion seeds)
1/2 tsp red chili powder
1/2 tsp ginger-garlic paste
Salt to taste

  • In a thick bottomed vessel, heat some oil.
  • Add coriander seeds, fenugreek seeds, kalonji, green chillies and ginger-garlic paste to it. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add diced tomatoes and cook for 2-3 minutes more.
  • Finally, add bottle gourd, salt and cook for 10 minutes.

It is a simple and wholesome meal and can be very satiating. Moreover nothing beats the satisfaction of eating a meal you've prepared from scratch, isn't it? True, this can be time consuming, but it can be easily done simultaneously and beats junk food or take-aways anyday!


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