Jimikand (Elephant Yam) is an ugly duckling among vegetables.
Pure vegetarians don’t like it much because of its meaty flavor while pure non-vegetarians don’t like to waste their time and energies on something that masquerades at being what it isn’t.
And those who love it don’t eat it very often either. In my complete life of 5 decades so far, I remember having eaten it only 4 times; first time as a child when Mom made it. Second time was when an office colleague brought it for lunch. I ate it with great relish on both the occasions. Third time, I tried to make it myself. It was during the Google-free era when recipes were not always readily available. Though I put in my best possible efforts, it turned out to be awful! I thought I would never cook it again.
But, as destiny would have it, in around October 2018, my husband bought some jimikand along with other vegetables at a local grocery store. It was because of one of their special offers. For several days, the jimikand sat in our fridge. Finally, when all the other veggies were over, I decided to make one more attempt at cooking it. I gathered a lot of ideas from Google.
To my great surprise, the dish turned out to be very tasty and it was made in a jiffy.
My husband said, “It tasted somewhat like the way my Mom used to make it.” I took that as a big complement as my mother-in-law was a highly-accomplished cook.
It gives me a lot of joy today as I share the recipe with you all in this post.
1. Wear gloves while peeling jimikand as it causes itching on bare skin.
2. Soak the cut pieces in water and squeeze some lemon juice into it. Keep the vessel aside for about 15 minutes.
3. Take out the cut jimikand pieces and wash them well in water. Deep fry them in batches in a pressure cooker till they turn brown. Take them out out of oil once done.
4. Take out excess oil and leave just about two tablespoons of oil in the pressure cooker. Turn on the gas again. Put a half teaspoonful of whole cumin into the hot oil. Once they start crackling, add chopped onion. After they start turning pink, add chopped tomato. When the oil starts appearing on the sides, add the spices as per your taste (turmeric, chilli powder, coriander powder, jeera powder, etc). Stir a little bit. Then add the fried jimikand pieces followed by salt according to taste.
5. Add water as per required viscosity and some green coriander leaves.
6. When the water starts boiling, cover with the lid and place the whistle. After about 4 or 5 whistles, the jimikand stew would be ready.
7. Open the cooker once it cools down. Serve hot with rotis. Enjoy!☺️