Kantolas (Phagil in Konkani) is the vegetable that belongs to the same family as Bitter guard does. Bitter guard is bitter whereas this is actually sweet. It is available for 3-4 months in a year in my part of India. It is grown in plenty in the North east. Interestingly frozen kantolas are available throughout the year at Indian stores in the US.
In our community, kantolas are a must for the Ganapathi festival. Most popular thing to do with Kantolas is to fry them – either shallow fried or deep fried versions. Today I will put each of the 2 versions and also additional variation with a different vegetable – raw banana.
What you need to have:
1. Kantolas : a few slices ( see image below )
1. Rice Atta 4 Teaspoons
2. Chick peas Atta 1 Teaspoon
3. Dhania jeera powder 1 Teaspoon
4. Chilli powder 1 Teaspoon
5. Turmeric powder 1/2 Teaspoon
6. Asafoetida powder 1/2 Teaspoon
7. Sujee – 1/2 Teaspoon
8. Salt To taste
9. Oil To fry
Ingredients of shallow frying Masala
What you do with what you have:
1. Wash and slice Kantolas, apply a little salt to it and keep it aside as shown in the image below.
Salt being applied to sliced Kantolas
2. Mix all the Masala ingredients except oil in a bowl and just dust the sliced Kantolas in it and keep it aside for about 10 minutes as shown in the image below. This gives enough time for the Masala to settle down well with the vegetable, so that it does not come off when you fry them.
Kantolas with Masala and the Masala mix
3. Place a dosa griddle on the flame with cooking oil on it. When heated place the masala dusted slices of Kantolas on it and sprinkle one or two spoons of oil again on top of it and close it with a lid.
4. After around 3-4 minutes just flip the slices and sprinkle oil again and leave it for a while.
When fried just remove it and serve hot with rice for either lunch or dinner. Shallow fried Kantolas are as shown in the image below. Truly yummy, a favorite in every home and certainly at mine.
What to remember:
1. While shallow frying make sure that you have enough oil to avoid the vegetable being burnt.
2. Also the quantity of chilli powder depends upon one’s preferences.
How long it takes: 30 minutes