LET’S CELEBRATE SPRING
Today marks the start of spring. Traditional rites and festivals of spring revolved around its importance in growing food. Plants start to grow and animals come out of hibernation and begin reproducing. People come out of hibernation too!
So let’s celebrate spring with another Traditional Pakistani food (Kachnar Keema).
A Lil Bit About Kachnar:
Kachnar/Orchid is a species of flowering plant in the family Fabaceae, native to southeastern Asia, from southern China west to Pakistan and India.
Kachnar tree, Bauhinia variegate, is also known as Orchid tree or Butterfly tree because of the way it’s flowers look. This is a very popular ornamental tree in subtropical and tropical climates, grown for its scented flowers and also used as food item in South Asian cuisine.
Varieties of Kachnar:
Kachnar has three varieties (red, white and mauve) depending upon the colour of its flowers.
In Pakistan, its buds are considered a delicacy. They are available for a short season only and are difficult and expensive to buy. Eating Kachnar ( Orchid)is very beneficial for our health as this vegetable is blessed with advantages and it taste is really good when cooked with addition of any mince meat(keema).
One thing I love about cooking is discovering new flavours that go together, especially when it’s flavours that you wouldn’t necessarily think to put together and today’s Kachnar Keema recipe is one of those creations.
My take on a traditional Pakistani Kachnar Keema with lamb mince, kachnar buds, and served hot chapatai and Raita.
I’ve been trying to perfect Kachnar Keema for a while, but I’ve always found that it was lacking a little something – it had meatiness from the lamb, bitterness from the kachnar buds and saltiness from the spices but it needed just a hint of creaminess. A few weeks ago on a whim (figuring that mince meat and yogurt go well) I decided to add some yogurt to my Kachnar Keema and the problem was solved – it is delicious.
If you’re reading this and thinking “hmmmm, what would be the taste, or would I like this recipe?” then stop!! Whilst you can taste the flavour of the kachnar, it compliments the mince rather than overpowering it.
Soooooooo…. convinced? 😉
Extra-Bonus Tips :
Here is an easy to cook Kachnar Keema recipe to try out!
Kachnar Keema Recipe
- 1 kg mutton or lamb mince keema
- 1/2 kg kachnar
- 1/2 cup oil or ghee
- 3 onions finely chopped
- 2 large tomatoes finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon ginger paste
- 1 teaspoon garlic paste
- 1/2 cup plain yogurt
- 2 teaspoon red chili powder
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder
- 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
- salt to taste
- Wash kachnar properly with water.
- Now heat oil in a skillet or wok over medium high heat.
- Saute onion in hot oil until transculant.
- Now add ginger garlic paste and cook for 30 seconds.
- Then add tomatoes, and mince.
- Cook on high flame for few minutes or until meat is no longer pink.
- Season with red chili, salt, cumin powder, coriander powder and turmeric powder.
- Add 1 cup water and cover with the lid.
- Let it simmer for 40 minutes or until mince is cooked thoroughly.
- Remove the lid and cook mince on high heat for 5-8 minutes or until oil comes on top.
- Now add kachnar and yogurt.
- Cook and stir for 10 minutes or until done.
- Now put on dum for few minutes then dish it out. Kachnar keema is ready to serve. ENJOY!!
Serve Kachnar Keema with hot Chapati, Zeera Raita and Salad
If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a photo and hashtag it #Recipestable. I’d love to see what you cook!