One of the best things about being married to Mahir is the wonderful introduction I’ve gotten to Gujarati food. Gujarat is the region of India where his family comes from (they now live in Bombay), and the cuisine there is completely different than the Punjabi food I grew up with. My mother-in-law, whose name is Bharati, is one of the best cooks I know, and I love going to Bombay every December and getting spoiled by her cooking. Traditional Gujarati food can be heavy and is even laced with sugar, but Mahir’s dad is a diabetic so she’s a very health conscious cook. I had a craving for her cabbage a few weeks ago and called her to ask for the recipe. I had always imagined it to be some complex combination of spices but was surprised by how simple it is. Since no recipe is a substitute for her touch, I’ll still have her make it for me when I visit, but this is a pretty darn good fill in! ~Shivani
1 head of green cabbage, finely shredded
1 tablespoon of vegetable or canola oil
juice of one lemon
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of garam masala
1 teaspoon of cumin powder
1 teaspoon of coriander power
1/2 teaspoon of turmeric
1 teaspoon of mustard seeds
1/4 cup of water
Toss cabbage with the salt and half the lemon juice.
Marinate for 30 minutes.
Warm a large nonstick on medium heat, and add oil.
Add mustard seeds, and cook until they pop, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Add spices in the oil, and mix well.
Add in water, mix with spices and let the mixture come to a gentle boil.
Add in cabbage, and mix well.
Cook until tender, about 10 to 15 minutes.
Turn off heat, and toss with the rest of the lemon juice.