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Sevain : story of the Indian vermicelli
I grew up in a rural Punjabi setting and one of the most fascinating sites that I remember was my grandmother deftly rolling seviyaan (indian vermicelli ) on an inverted ghada (pot) I used to think she was quick till I entered the google and youtube age and saw that there were Chinese chefs who could make upto 5000 lo-mien noodles a minute, by hand of course !
It’s here that I decided to study a little more of this historically intriguing culinary delight.
Here’s a plausible story about how “Seviyaan “ became a household name in India.
Noodles are now established to be of Chinese origin, after much tussle with the Egyptians. The earliest “Fossils “of noodles have been found in Chine, on the banks of the yellow river and they date back 4000 years!
It’s from the Mongols (mughals) Chinese origins that the noodles came to Indiaand gradually got absorbed in the culture, eventually to find a way to the commoners home in form of sevain.
Heres a traditional Sheer Khurma recipe from My Lucknowi repertoire
Sevain – 50gms
Ghee – 3tbsp
Chironji whole , Pistachio and almonds slivered – 4 tbsp
Raisins and dates soaked in water and chopped – 2 tbsp
Milk ( buffalo milk preferred ) – 8cups
Green cardamom seeds – 1 tsp
Sugar – 100 gms
Saffron – ¼ tsp
1 . Reduce the milk to half on low flame
2 . Roast the nuts in ghee along with green cardamom
3 . add milk to the nuts and the dry fruits , simmer for 5 minutes
4 . add the vermicelli and sugar and simmer for another 5 minutes
5 sprinkle saffron and serve at room temperature