3 green pea recipe ideas for UAE winters

Dubai: green peas are evergreen. Especially in many South Asian cuisines, these versatile legumes are often kept on hand to be made into soups, spicy and stir-fried snacks, used as a garnish for parathas (flatbreads) and kachoris or in savory pastries. fries like samosas. They are even added to rice preparations like pulao and spicy curries.

Peas were once considered seasonal and harvested only during the winter months. They still are, but, over time, packages of frozen green peas have replaced fresh ones to be available year-round.

These bright green peas grow inside the pods and have a sweet flavor, making them a great option to accompany savory dishes such as curries. In many countries, home cooks store fresh green peas in their home freezers for a steady supply.

The Gulf News Food team spoke to 3 Dubai-based chefs who shared trending green pea recipes for our readers. Try them out and let us know how they turn out.

1.Green Pea Soup Recipe

Green pea soup. Image used for illustrative purposes only
Image Credit: Shutterstock

Preparation time: 10 minutes

500 g defrosted green peas

1 medium sized white onion, finely chopped

3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

3 inches leek, white part only

1 stalk of celery, peeled and chopped

Vegetable broth (boil onions, carrots, celery sticks, and leeks for a vegetarian option) or use store-bought vegetable bouillon cubes

Chicken broth (boil chicken bones and water) or store-bought chicken stock cubes

3 sprigs of basil leaves, optional

1. Using olive oil, sauté the onions until soft, then add the garlic. Continue to sauté until golden brown. Add chopped leeks and celery. Cook them together until the vegetables become tender.

2. Now add the chicken or vegetable broth depending on the consistency you want the soup to be.

3. When all the large vegetables are softened, add the peas. Quickly sauté the green peas with the rest of the ingredients. Once the green peas are tender enough, turn off the heat. Remember not to overcook. This will reduce their color to pale green.

4. Once this is done, add all the mixture and the basil into a blender, blend it into a smooth paste. Stock can be added to adjust the consistency if needed.

5. Once you have this mixture, it returns to the pot, which simmers to make the actual soup. Add more broth at this point, then add the cream and butter.

6. Next, add fresh thyme and season with salt and pepper.

baked croutons recipe: Dice 4 slices of white or brown bread and set aside. Heat 3 tablespoons of butter over low heat in a pan and let it melt. Then add salt, pepper to taste, 2 minced garlic cloves, 2 tbsp parsley and sauté for a few seconds. Then pour this mixture over the diced bread and bake until golden brown. To bake – place bread on baking sheet and bake at 175 degrees Fahrenheit for about 5-7 minutes, or until golden brown, turning at least once halfway through or as needed .

Recipe courtesy of the specialty store chef at Cove Rotana Resort, Ras Al Khaimah, UAE

2. Green Peas or Matar Pulao Recipe

Recipe for pulao of green peas or pulao de matar

Green pea pulao or pulao de matar recipe. Image used for illustrative purposes only
Image Credit: Shutterstock

Preparation time: 10 minutes

80 g defrosted green peas

2 tablespoons ghee or clarified butter

1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste, equal portion

2 pieces of green chilli, split

1. Wash and soak the rice for at least 30 minutes. This allows the rice to cook quickly and remove excess starch.

2. In a saucepan, heat the ghee or clarified butter and melt over low heat.

3. Once the ghee has melted, add the cumin seeds, which will start to crackle, followed by the whole spices. Sauté all of this together for about a minute. The heat and oil will infuse with the whole spices and release an aroma.

4. Next, add the ginger and garlic paste and sauté for about a minute until the raw smell is gone.

5. Now add the defrosted green peas and rice to the pot and mix.

6. Add water and salt and stir.

7. Cover the pot with a lid and cook for 20-30 minutes, over low heat.

8. Check with a fork to see if it’s done. Should be a little more than al dente. Turn off the heat and let the rice sit for a while.

9. Garnish with green cilantro, fried onions or birista and fried cashews

Here is our editor’s Birista recipe

Serve hot with raita or yogurt and a vegetable condiment.

Recipe courtesy of Dhaba Lane, Al Karama, Dubai

3.Recipe for Matar Kachori or fried savory puff pastry stuffed with peas

Matar Kachori or a fried savory pastry topped with green peas.  Image used for illustrative purposes only

Matar Kachori or a fried savory pastry topped with green peas. Image used for illustrative purposes only
Image Credit: Shutterstock

Preparation time: 25 minutes

1 kg maida or plain flour

500 g fresh or defrosted peas

10g chaat masala (Editor’s note – create at home with equal parts roasted cumin powder, black salt and dried mango powder)

5g garam masala (recipe)

A pinch of heeng powder or asafoetida

A pinch of ginger, chopped

10 ml oil, for frying the filling

2 l oil for frying kachori or fried bread

1. In a bowl, add flour and oil to mix well. Now start kneading. Pour the water little by little and knead with your hands. Don’t pour all the water in at once. Keep adding a few tablespoons as needed for kneading. This should take around 4-5 minutes. Knead until the dough is smooth and firm. Do not knead the dough like roti or Indian pancakes. It doesn’t have to be soft and malleable. A soft dough will make a soft crust, like roti. However, for kachori, we need a crispy crust.

When done, cover it with a muslin cloth and let it sit for at least 30 minutes. Note: You can use a damp muslin cloth so as not to dry out the paste.

1. Mash the Peas – If using fresh green peas, you will need to simmer them in water for about 6-8 minutes. For thawed ones, mash them as is. Use a potato masher to mash the peas to a semi-coarse consistency.

2. In a skillet, heat the oil. Then add the cumin seeds and once they start to crackle, add the chopped ginger and green chilies. Fry them for about 30 seconds.

3. Next, add the pea puree to the pan and mix well. Add salt to taste. Keep it aside.

Note: A quick trick to make wet mashed peas dry is to add dry roasted chickpea flour, and about 1 tbsp should be enough. You can quickly dry roast the gram flour in a separate pan for a few minutes and add it to the filling.

1. Break the dough into small balls of equal size and flatten it using a rolling pin. Roll into a disc shape, about 4 to 5 inches.

2. Now place a small amount of filling in the center of the disc. A quick tip – you can apply water to the edges of the disc. This will help the dough stick firmly and ensure the filling doesn’t spill out.

3. Then bring the edges together in the center and join them. Seal the filling by pressing in the center. Make sure there are no cracks or the pea filling will overflow.

4. You can use your hands to flatten the ball filled with dough or gently press it down with a rolling pin. Repeat this for all the dough balls to start frying. Cover all the kachoris with a damp muslin cloth until the frying oil warms up.

1. In a kadhai or wok, add oil and heat it. Make sure the oil is not too hot or too cold. Over low to medium heat, start frying the kachoris. Add no more than 1 or 2 at a time, depending on the size of the wok. Make sure there is enough space between them for them to inflate.

Serve hot with a spicy and tangy chutney

Recipe courtesy of Chef Prakash Singh, Chatori Gali, Dubai

What’s your favorite green pea recipe? Share with us at food@gulfnews.com