Jun 18, 2007

The ultimate comfort food – Metkut Bhaat

(RCI is a blog event started by Lakshmi and hosted this month by Nupur. Every month, a different host chooses a cuisine from India and bloggers come up with mouth-watering dishes special from that cuisine. The cuisine of the month is Maharashtrian. This cuisine is dear to my heart for the obvious reasons.)

Imagine you are sick with fever or a sore throat. What would you like to eat? If I was posed this question, I would say, “Metkut Bhaat”.

It was not easy for me to decide what to make for RCI: Maharashtrian cuisine; I wanted the dish to be something very special and unique to me. So, when I started rewinding my favorite dishes since childhood, one dish topped the list. Metkut Bhaat Tup Loncha ani Limbachi fod has been my favorite since I was a kid. This is a Maharashtrian specialty and an ultimate comfort dish for all seasons. I think the love for metkut has been passed on from generations to generations.

Metkut is a simple powder; it’s a mixture of spices and daal. It has a smooth texture and spicy taste. I don’t exactly remember mom making this, but we sure used to purchase Bedekar special metkut a zillion times. When I would be down with fever, metkut bhaat would be the only dish I would eat. Of course, mom would make me skip the pickle, to which I would agree with a frown.

For me, discovering the recipe and making metkut at home was like discovering an age-old secret. Don’t you think that sometimes we are unaware how easy it is to make something and we keep getting it from stores? That’s what happened in this case. I would have never imagined making metkut is so easy. The best part is all the ingredients would be readily available in your pantry. Here goes the method for making this delicious spicy powder.


(Adapted from Annapurna)

1.Heat a pan on medium flame. Add 1 cup harbhare (kala chana or black chickpeas), 1/2 cup rice, 1/2 cup urad daal, 3 tsp wheat flour. Fry till the udad daal becomes light brown. This would take around 8 minutes. You will know it is fine to turn off the gas from the aroma.
2.Grind the above fried mixture with 1 tbsp cumin seeds, 1 tsp asafetida, 1 tsp turmeric powder, 2 tsp red chilli powder, 1 tsp coriander seeds, 1 tsp mustard seeds, 1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds, 1 tsp cardamom powder, 1 tsp cinnamon powder, 1 tsp ginger powder, and 1/8 tsp nutmeg powder. Sieve to get a fine powder.
3. Store in a jar or air tight container. This powder can be used for several weeks.

Serving suggestion: Take a small ball of cooked rice. Add 1 tsp metkut, 1 tsp ghee, and 1 tsp lemon juice to the rice. Mix well and enjoy with pickle. You can also add metkut to waran bhaat if you don’t like eating dry dishes.

Verdict: No more store bought metkut packets for me. I was elated on tasting this savory powder mixed with steaming rice. The taste was exactly how I remembered it. The US mixtures are pathetic. I had a tough time grinding all the ingredients. If you have a coffee maker, I think it would be easier to grind using it. This is a must-try for all Maharashtrian food lovers.

The recipe for metkut also happens to be Vaishali’s debut post. Some other Maharashtrian comfort foods that I found were:
Nupur’s Waran Bhaat
Manisha’s Wangi Bhaat
TC’s Shevgyachya shenganchi amti


Coffee said...

That name is so cute. :)

I was not aware of this spiced mix at all...... and you so rightly mentioned the benefits of making it at home. :) It surely sounds like a comfort meal. :)

Sia said...

very well said swapna. necessity becomes mother of all inventions;) just few days back i wanted to make puliyogare and i had no MTR mix with me. after checking some blogs and cookbooks i relaised how simple it is to make it at home and it turned out to be really delicious as it was freshly ground:)
i have to try this metuki powder someday. looks like ultimate comfort food as u said:)

Nupur said...

Oh, that is truly comfort food at its best! Thanks for a wonderful entry!

Asha said...

Sound like a great recipe! Very traditional and a quick dish too.I have Vangi Bhaat too!:)

Supriya said...

harbhare mhanje,chanyachi dal na?

Vini K said...

Hi Swapna,this spice powder looks similar to what we in Andhra make for our curries.It is called Menthi podi..BTW,I have the same Q as supriya above-isharbhare same as chana dal or is it kabuli chana?

Swapna said...

Coffee: You are always the first to comment:)
Sia: I am going to take ur word and try making puliogare powder at home.
Nupur: Glad u liked the entry.
Supriya and Vini: I have used kala chana or black chickpeas for this powder.

Sharmi said...

that sounds very similar to the dal powder relished in Andhra and tamilnadu. looks very nice.

Roopa said...

Making fresh always adds a great taste. Looks like comfort food just like menthe hittu. i will try this for my kids

Vcuisine said...

Something totally new for us Swapna. Interesting. Though we make different powders to mix with rice and eat, this is different. Tks. Viji

Manisha said...

Swapna! Metkut bhaat is to die for! Varan bhaat and metkut bhaat. And add more tup to that bhaat. Go on!


TheCooker said...

You made your own metkut!! Very impressive.
Metkut-bhaat or metkut-pohe are a favourite in our family.

KitchenAromas said...

Hi Swapna,
Commenting on your blog for the first time! Metkut is my all time favorite! Though I am from Karnataka, my cooking has a lot of Maharashtrian influence. My mom makes a tangy curry of sorts with metkut - temper mustard seeds with some chana dal, urad dal, curry leaves and hing; add metkut and fry for a second, then add tamarind pulp and jaggery. Adjust the consistency and that's it! The taste is to die for! :)

Manisha said...

I'm visiting my s-i-l next week and she asked me to bring metkut for her as she can't get it in the stores. Guess what? I made it this evening using your recipe and added cloves as in Vaishali's recipe. And, it was so easy! I dry roasted all the masala separately, too. And then we had metkut bhaat for dinner! It was fabulous!

Can't thank you enough cos if I hadn't seen your post, I would have just gone to the store and bought a packet of metkut! This is way way way better!

jaba said...

yeah I like it very much I think it has a nick name gun powder . IWOULD LIKE TO KNOW DO U SAUTE the spices before grinding

Bhavna said...

hi, from so many days i was seraching for the Metkut receipe tahnk you so much for giving it....this is really very tasty and healthy too..

Anonymous said...

Don't stop posting such articles. I like to read articles like that. By the way add more pics :)

ngaher91 said...

it is very fantastic recepies, which we are using in konkan.