While many believe that it was in Akbar’s court from one of his skilled khansamas, given the mention of Mirch Ka Salan as one of the highlights of menu served at Akbar’s coronation ceremony as the Emperor Of India. Even the Ain-i-Akbari mentions the dish as his favourite. In one of the pages, it is written that an edgy prince (referring to Akbar) was pleased to see that his favourite Mirch Ka Salan on the rehearsal dinner menu with Mir Bakawal, who reminded the prince how his beloved dish is an adaptation of a popular Indian cooking practice which the kitchen has embellished with local spices, condiments and souring agents from regions all over the kingdom – making something altogether unique.
It is said that Akbar, who was a staunch vegetarian, loved his Mirch Ka Salan not only for its unique taste, but also for the flavour integration that the dish had. For him, many historians and travelers later noted, the dish was an extension of his thought process of a united kingdom, where people stayed in harmony.
Asaf Jahi, who is credited of developing the Hyderabadi cuisine, as one of the contenders — there was no denying that Mirch Ka Salan was never developed as a side -kick to Biryani as it later became. Food lores also suggest that the dish came during the time of Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, the fifth ruler of the Qutb Shahi dynasty, founded the city of Hyderabad in 1591, who was known to be rather fond of bold flavours in his food.
But all said, in all likelihood, Mirch Ka Salan was never the side-kick to Biryani, but a main dish. Mirch Ka Salan was a thick brown rich gravy, which usually meant that it was one of the star dishes of the table, to be had with steamed rice or chappatis/rotis.
Thanks to Chef Gaurav Chadha, In-house Chef, Dr. Oetker India Pvt. Ltd to enligten us on glorious history of Hyderabadi Mirchi ka salan … Here is Quick and Easy Recipe which Chef Gaurav Chadha shared with us …
Hyderabadi Mirchi Ka Salan
½ tsp Sesame Seeds
½ tsp Coriander Seeds
1-2 Whole Red Chillies
1 tbsp Desiccated Coconut Powder
1 tsp Vegetable Oil
5-6 Curry Leaves
½ tsp Turmeric Powder
100 ml Coconut Milk
60 g (4 tbsp) Dr. Oetker FunFoods Peanut Butter Crunchy
100 ml Water
100 g Large Green Chillies, fried
1 tbsp Lemon Juice
4-5 Coriander Leaves, chopped
- Heat non-stick pan (low flame) add sesame seeds, coriander seeds, red chillies and coconut powder. Roast the spices for 1 minute and let it cool.
- In a blender jar add above mixture and grind it to form a thick paste.
- Heat oil in a non-stick pan (low flame) add curry leaves, turmeric powder, coconut milk, peanut butter and water. Stir and add above paste. Cook this mixture for 3-4 minutes or till it thickens.
- Add fried chillies to above mixture, season with salt and add lemon juice. Garnish with corinader leaves and serve hot.
Preparation Time: 5 Minutes
Cooking Time: 10 Minutes