Banana Stem Alkaline Stew (Khar)
This is a gut friendly dish traditionally made in Assam, India.
1 small banana stem (about 18 inches long)
6 cloves garlic
1/2 inch ginger
1 tsp mustard seed paste
1 green chilly, split lengthwise
100ml mustard oil
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
150g split pigeon peas (arhar dal), rinsed
Salt to taste
Coriander leaves for garnishing
Remove the outer skin layers of the banana stem until the tender white portion is reached. Remove the tender white stem and chop it finely. Soak the finely sliced stem in a bowl of water for 10 minutes.
Make a paste of the ginger and garlic.
Heat the oil in a pan. Add the the pastes (ginger, garlic, and mustard) and stir for 2 minutes.
Add the chopped banana stem and salt. Cook stirring occasionally for 5 minutes.
Pour 1 ½ cup hot water and add the pigeon peas. Sprinkle with baking soda and bring to a boil.
Add the sugar and chilly and cover the pan. Reduce heat and simmer for about 7-8 minutes until the water evaporates.
Remove from heat, garnish with coriander leaves. Serve with rice.