Chalna / Salna is typically a term related to non-veg category, its the watery leftover gravy from any meat curry preparation, mostly mutton or chicken. There isn't a vegetarian version and even if any veggies added to it, its termed as Saagu. Here I've created a vegetarian style salna which tastes pretty decent and could be one good quick gravy for roti / idli / dosai.
Salna / Vegetarian Salna / Sagu / Saagu / Chaaru / Meatless gravy
|2 no||Onion (roughly chopped)|
|1 no||Tomato (chopped)|
|2 clove||Garlic (crushed)|
|1 no||Green chili (slit open)|
|3 nos||Dry red chili|
|4 tbsp||Coriander seeds|
|½ tsp||Cumin seeds|
|½ tsp||Fennel seeds|
|½ tsp||Black peppercorn|
|1 tsp||Roasted gram(pottukadalai)|
|1 no||Cinnamon stick (very small)(1/2)|
|2 stks||Coriander leaves|
|2 tbsp||Dry coconut / fresh grated|
|¼ tsp||Mustard (for tempering)|
|¼ tsp||Cumin seeds (for tempering)|
|10 nos||Curry leaves (for tempering)|
|¼ tsp||Turmeric powder|
|1 tsp||Salt (or to taste)|
This recipe can be proceeded in 2 styles depending on your personal preference. Raw will taste slightly different from roasted.. in a good way though and could be a quick whip up. Infact I personally prefer the raw style for my parottas.
Raw Style : Grind (chopped onions + diced tomatoes + ginger + garlic + green chili + dry red chili + corainder seeds + cumin seeds + fennel seeds + black peppercorn + cinnamon + cloves + cardamom + roasted gram + corainder leaves + dry coconut ) all these with 1/4 cup water to fine consistency. Heat oil in a sauce pan, splutter mustard, cumin seeds and curry leaves. Add the blended gravy, turmeric powder and salt. Bring it to one boil, cover and simmer for 15 minutes over very low flame until the oil seperated on top. Add water and adjust the consistency depending on your preference. Thick salna goes very well with idli / doasi, watery thin salna for chappati or parotta.
Roasted Style : Heat a 3 tsp of oil and roast each ingredient listed (dry red chili, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, black peppercorn, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, roasted gram), add chopped onions, green chili, ginger and garlic. Fry these along with the dry spices until brown. Add chopped tomatoes and cook for few minutes or until it turns soft. Finally include the either fresh or dry coconut, coriander leaves and toss. Switch off and let cool completely. Grind this with water to a thin consistency and keep aside. Heat remaining oil, splutter mustard, cumin and curry leaves, add the blended gravy along with turmeric and salt. Bring it to one boil and simmer covered for 15 minutes.
Hosting a party ???? This could be one big handy gravy item for huge parties. This could feed both veg and non-vegetarians. Have simple boild eggs added to the this gravy and serve as a great accompaniment for any biryani or pulav item. Temper with lots of curry leaves for vegetarians or throw in boiled sliced potatoes and decorate with curry leaves.
My son is very picky when it comes to eating boiled eggs, so had to come up with some tricks… like the one shown above, decorated with mustards seeds and thin slice of tomato. Poured in little gravy on top for blondie looks.. and that did brighten up his face.
Yield: Serve 4 adults approx, adjust with water and salt for extra gravy.