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Thursday, June 9, 2016

Bhee Gobi Masala ( Lotus Stem Curry )

Though lotus stem is one of those vegetables that I had never tasted in Odisha, it has become one of my favorites these days. Though it is somewhat bland with a slight hint of nuttiness, it reminds me strongly of the banana stem that we use in authentic Odia cuisine. Both of them tend to be quite fibrous and need to be cooked with the right combination of spices to make a tasty curry. But even more than the taste ( and it's good looks ), I was sold on the health benefits of this vegetable. It is power-packed with minerals like potassium, phosphorous, copper, zinc, iron and manganese while also being a source of vitamins B6, C, thiamine and pantothenic acid. It is also a good source of dietary fiber and protein. Lotus root is recommended to people suffering from blood pressure, slow bowel movements and also for aiding weight loss.

Being a very popular vegetable with the Sindhi folks, I first started looking up Sindhi preparations with lotus root. And I stumbled upon manyrecipes that belonged to Veitnam or Thailand. Turns out that it's a quite popular vegetable in those parts of the world. But anyways, I finally checked this wonder recipe 'Bhee Alu Vadi Masala' by Nisha Madhulika. Did some adaptations to suit my taste and made the curry. Turned out to be nice and easy.

The only time consuming procedure was cleaning the lotus root. The outer layer needs to be peeled and it should be sliced into thin slanting slices . If the holes inside have some mud sticking to them, soak in hot water for sometime and then clean with a soft brush.

Here's the recipe -

Preparation Time - 30 mins

Ingredients -

  • 300 gm lotus root ( cut into thin slanting slices )
  • 1 1/2 cups cauliflower florets
  • 1/2 cup green peas
  • 1 small onion
  • 5-6 garlic flakes
  • 1 1/2 inch ginger
  • 1 green chili (optional)
  • 2 large tomatoes 
  • 50 gm paneer ( I think you can leave this out for a lighter gravy )
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder ( or to taste )
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 2-3 pinch garam masala 
  • 3 tsp oil
  • salt to taste

Preparation - Grind the onion, ginger and garlic into a fine paste. Keep aside.

Then make another paste out of the tomato, paneer and green chili.

Cooking - Heat oil in a pressure cooker. Add the cumin seeds and let them splutter. Add the onion-ginger-garlic paste and cook for few mins till raw smell goes off.

Add the tomato-paneer paste and let it cook for a while ( 8-9 mins ) till oil starts to float on the surface. Sprinkle the turmeric, chili powder, coriander powder and garam masala. Cook for 3-4 mins.

Finally add the lotus stem slices, cauliflower florets and green peas. Add 1/cup warm water. Close lid and cook covered on medium flame for 1 whistle.

Keep aside till steam escapes. Open lid and garnish with cilantro.

Serve hot with rotis/white rice and yellow dal.

Note - The original recipe by Nisha Madhulika had used potatoes and Amritsari Masala Urad dal Vadi. 


  1. I have been cooking it with dal vadi...will try this variation...sounds good with paneer in the gravy.

    1. And I have to try it with dal vadi :) !! Instead of paneer, one can use cashew/almond paste too

  2. I love lotus stem, however it is cooked. But this is an extra special recipe.

  3. Wow... looks very delicious :)


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