I have not been baking my sourdough loaf breads but the sourdough is being used nonetheless. With all my finger and wrist joints stiff and painful the usual breads are still not possible for me but I have found a help who can cook basic things. The first thing I taught her to make the sourdough kulchas and the nifty quinoa salads. I am happy with this for now.
While I have been making breads and parathas with spinach, methi, bathua and even dill greens the discovery of Agasti or Agastya leaves (Sesbania grandiflora or Humming bird tree) as a fairly tasty greens led me to make sourdough kulcha with this unusual leafy green. The Agasti leaves smell a little bitter when being boiled but once kneaded in a dough one can make nice rotis and kulchas.
Kulcha is a leavened flatbread. I make sourdough kulchas the old fashioned way. Adding Agasti leaves to the sourdough kulcha is convenient as you are saved from making an extra dish with the leaves if you want to incorporate them in your diet.
My friend Sneh who runs Tijara Organic farm brought me some Agasti leaves when she came visiting saying it will be good for my joint pain and stiffness after Chikunguniya. It is fairly rich in Calcium and iron along with many other minerals, almost like Drumstick leaves.
Agasti leaves can be boiled and pureed and be added to anything you wish. If you add a bit of this puree to regular palak paneer or black chickpeas curry or even some green soup it doesn't alter the taste of the food. I found huge bunches of the Agasti leaves being sold in vegetable markets when I visited Tamilnadu earlier this month.
Back to the sourdough kulcha now, if you don't have sourdough starter you can make it with fresh or dry yeast. This green kulcha has a faint grassy taste but the nutty flavours of whole grains and the sourdough taste make it interesting.
The filling of egg salad with avocado and mustard tasted really nice with it.
1/2 cup sourdough starter
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup jowar flour
1/4 cup agasti leaves puree (steamed without water and pureed when cold)
2 tsp oil of choice
salt to taste
Mix everything together and knead a firm dough adding a little more water if needed. Kead with oil smeared on hands in the final couple of minutes. Let the dough rest in a warm place till doubled in size.
Knead one more time, divide into 6-7 balles, smoothen and arrange on a plate. Brush with oil and let it rise while you heat the griddle. Yes these are griddle baked but you can bake them in the oven too.
Roll each ball into a pizza base like manner and slap on hot griddle. Let one side get cooked while the bread fluffs up and gets thicker. Flip and cook on the other side till done. Make all the kulchas like this and keep warm in a napkin.
Arrange the egg salad or any other salad over the kulcha, fold and enjoy the flavours.
Recipe of the egg salad with avocado
(for 2 servings)
4 hard boiled eggs
1 cup cubed avocado
one large ripe tomato cubed
few baby mustard or radish leaves or any sharp flavoured leafy green
minced green chilli and garlic as per taste
1 tsp mustard oil or extra virgin olive oil
salt to taste
lime juice to taste
Mix the dressing ingredients and whisk. Add everything else and toss to mix. Serve immediately.
The green kulcha or even plain kulcha tastes great with this beets and soy nuggets stir fry salad. Try is sometime to know how easy it is to make though it sounds complicated.
For me the whole grain flat breads work better as I always make in small batches. These green kulchas can be used as a wrap or to soak up the stews and curries.
Cut the green kulcha into wedges and toast them all till crisp. Use the kulcha crackers to scoop up some nice hummus, a lentil soup or even some chokha. Bread is just the base.