About this Recipe
Pangat, a Feast by Saee Koranne-Khandekar highlights the cuisine of Maharashtra, one of India’s largest states. It’s a vast area extending from the Arabian Sea across the Deccan Plateau to the central subcontinent, so the food of Maharashtra is varied, to say the least. But this particular cucumber, peanut, and coconut dish, says Koranne-Khandekar, is “the most ubiquitous of all Marathi salads.”
With over 90% water, cucumbers are very hydrating, making them a great post-exercise snack. Cucumbers are also rich in polyphenol compounds that help reduce oxidative stress. Peanuts are a rich source of healthy fats, protein (25 percent by weight), fiber, minerals, and vitamins, and are an excellent source of resveratrol, a polyphenolic antioxidant also found in red wine that may help protect against cancers, heart disease, and degenerative nerve disease. Coconut meat contains protein, fiber, minerals like copper, iron, manganese, and magnesium, and medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs), which can boost stamina.
Note: To prepare a fresh coconut for grating, first make a hole in one of the eyes using a clean nail and hammer. Drain the coconut water and save, preferably for drinking. Next, break the coconut on a sturdy surface with a hammer, or throw it down onto a hard outdoor surface like a patio stone. Wedge a small metal spoon between the coconut’s shell and flesh, and pry the flesh off. The flesh can be stored in the freezer in an airtight container, ready to grate at any time. Frozen coconut meat also is available in the freezer section of many grocery stores.
- 2 cucumbers, peeled and finely chopped
- 3 Tbsp (35 g) peanuts, roasted, peeled and coarsely ground
- 3 Tbsp (30 g) grated fresh (or frozen) coconut
- 2 Tbsp (3 g) finely chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 tsp sugar
- Juice of 1 or 1½ limes (depending on its juiciness, to taste)
- 1 tsp ghee
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 fresh green chile, cut into big pieces
Step 1Put the cucumber, ground peanuts, fresh coconut, and fresh cilantro in a mixing bowl. Mix in the salt (start with a pinch and add to taste), sugar, and lime juice, and set aside.
Step 2Heat the ghee in a small pan over medium heat until melted. Add the cumin seeds and chile. Take off the heat and swirl the pan to let the flavors merge. Add to the cucumbers. Mix well and serve immediately.