“There were many elaborate meals that she had cooked and would cook in the future. But that day, with the simple white rice and the humble dal, the shaami with its crisply fried edges and warm soft body inside added a sheen to the afternoon that was hard to replicate. Tahera didn’t know it yet, but every time she needed comfort, she was going to reach out for the chana dal and the gently thawing frozen meat chunks.”
Chana dal – 100 gm
Meat – cleaned, deboned – ¼ kg
Onions – 1 big
Whole red chillies/green chillies – 2
Coriander leaves – a handful
Garam masala powder – ½ tsp
Ground coconut – 2 tsp
Adrak-lehsun paste – ½ tsp
Haldi – a pinch
- Put all the above ingredients in an open vessel like a kadai.
- Save a little bit of the raw meat separately.
- Add just enough water to immerse the dal and meat. Don’t add too much or too less.
- Cook on medium flame until the water dries up.
- Let the mixture cool.
- Adding a little bit of the raw meat, grind the mixture in two batches in a mixer.
- Don’t add too much water while grinding. In fact, avoid using water as far as possible.
- When the shaami dough is ready, oil your palms.
- Take small, walnut sized rounds, and between two palms roll it until smooth and there are no cracks.
- Start rolling it oblong and then make both ends taper.
- Finally flatten the shaami along the base of your palm gently.
- Heat oil in a kadai and fry the shaamis.
Be careful as they might break and sputter. If by any chance they start disintegrating in the oil, mix a little cornflour/besan ka atta into the shaami dough.