It is probably the 5557th time he has asked me, “What time is the flight landing?” The baby bear of our home is a big fan of his dad. He calls themselves “the twins.” To him, his dad can’t do anything wrong or say anything wrong. His trust and love for him is unparalleled. When I am cross, it doesn’t take him a moment more to say I was wrong. He’s around his dad every minute possible. He’s the biggest fan of his dad, and takes every word his dad says to heart, and those are the final words. Imagine a kid who sounds squeaky and loud going daddy, daddy this, daddy that. It can get quite annoying, but it’s too cute for us not to smile.
The funniest thing he said a couple of weeks ago after watching Fast and Furious, “Dad, you are so much more muscly and good looking than Vin Diesel.” I’m laughing now as he is hovering over my shoulder as I type this and thinking about the moment when it actually happened. He was just not happy that I was talking about how Vin Diesel’s muscles were. Don’t bash at me for this, I know how people feel about him… Just FYI, both hubby and I are small built, no where near 5 and half feet..that says something about the kiddo.
Hubby has been travelling, and the little one missed him quite a bit. We do too, but he is papa’s little Bruce Lee. He has been overly clingy with us, which I don’t mind at all. Who can blame him? Hubby is so good with the boys, from building robots to teaching them to build tables. They built a vegetable patch and he promised the kiddo he’ll get him a dog if he grew an apple. Unfortunately, the apple tree is still with two branches. It’s good for me though :). Daddy to him is everything other than cricket.
I made Handvo/Vegetable cake a few weeks ago when hubby was not around, and the little one enjoyed it so much that he requested I make it for his dad because he wasn’t there to enjoy it. The repeat happened, and I decided to share this popular Indian snack with you guys.
This Savory cake comes from the region of Gujarat. It’s crispy and bursts with spices and vegetables, while it’s soft on the inside. The crispy outer part is to die for. Traditionally, it’s made by soaking all the grains overnight, grinding it and leaving it to ferment. It’s nice but requires a bit of time. I prefer instant gratification (especially if you have kids, you know what I mean). They crave something and when it’s something like this, it takes a lot of prep. I fry the lentils and rice separately for few minutes each and grind it to a fine powder and store it. With this method, in a matter for an 1 or 1.5 hours, you have a traditional Handvo which tastes equally amazing. The vegetables you add in this are up to your imagination. The traditional vegetable used is Opa Squash and carrots. Gluten free, perfect light snack, or a nice lunch with some Apple Chutney. Made in a bundt pan, it’s perfect to take for parties and entertain with.
- 2 cup rice par boiled
- 1 cup channa daal
- 2 cup urad daal
- ½ cup green moong daal
- ½ cup tuvar daal
- ½ cup yellow split daal
- 2 tbsp corn flour
- For the vegetable stuffing and the additions:
- 2 cups of the handvo mix
- 1 cup grated Zucchini or Opa Squash
- 1 cup carrot shredded
- ½ cup peas(optional)
- ½ cup sour yogurt(no fat free)
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- ½ tsp chilli powder
- ⅓ tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp fresh garlic paste
- 1 tsp fresh ginger grated
- 1 tsp fresh green chilly grated
- 2 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp salt or accordingly
- ½ tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ⅓ cup vegetable oil
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- few curry leaves
- green chillies thinly sliced(optional)
- pinch of asafoetida
- 2 tbsp white sesame seeds
- Toast each daal and rice separately on a flat bottomed large non stick pan for few minutes. It takes anywhere from 5-7 minutes. Fry on very low heat- simmer. You do not want any color on the rice and lentils.Then cool it and grind it to a coarse powder. Cool and store in airtight container. You can use 1 cup of this mix anytime you are making handvo or savory cake.
- To make the Handvo-Savory cake:
- In a large bowl, add the handvo flour mix we've already made, add the vegetable, the flour mixture, yogurt, lemon juice, chili powder, garlic, green chilli and ginger paste, sugar and mix well. The mixture should be thick. Do NOT make it watery.
- Lastly add the baking soda and baking powder and fold into the batter. Do not over mix.
- Keep a pan, add the oil and let it get medium hot. Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, curry leaves, green chilies and asafoetida and let is splutter. Turn off the heat and add the sesame seeds.
- At this point Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Slowly add the tempered oil to the flour and vegetable mix. Lightly fold it in. Keep 2 tsp of the tempered oil to top the cake.
- Pour the mixture in a pan which is liberally coated with oil. Top with the reserved oil and some more sesame seeds.
- Bake at 400 degrees.
- It depends on what size of pan you use. For muffins, it might take 15-20 minutes. Larger muffins might take 30 minutes. For a large cake mold, it might take 50min-1 hour.
- If you find the tops are getting too brown, cover it with some aluminium foil and bake. Insert a toothpick to see if it is thoroughly cooked.
- Take it out and rest for 15 minutes, turn it out on a serving tray and serve with some Apple Green chutney(I have recipe for it on the archive)
You can make this handvo or cake on a thick bottomed pan. Cast iron works perfectly.
You can use any vegetable, fenugreek leaves works well, opa squash is traditional. Handvo freezes well too. Take it out and de freeze and toss with some onion and fresh herbs.
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