Coconut Chutney-2

Chutneys are wonderful accompaniments to any Indian meal. We have so many different varieties of chutneys to cater to our taste buds. They can liven up a drab meal and whet our appetite.

There are many chutneys that I make. But one particular chutney that I learnt from my mother is my personal favorite. This chutney is made of coconut, garlic and red chilies.

Garlic, when eaten raw, is considered to be very beneficial. It is believed to  purify blood, provide relief from cold and flu, prevent heart disease and more. This chutney uses raw garlic which aids in digestion.

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Coconut Chutney With Garlic

What is unique about this chutney is the combination of the garlic and the smoky flavor imparted by the slightly burnt red chili. The sweetness of the coconut, the pungency of the garlic and the heat of the red chilies together with tamarind form a delicious chutney that is appetizing. This chutney is a great accompaniment with Akki Vottis, Dosas or even rice. Here is how to make it.

Ingredients

1 cup grated coconut

1 red chili, slightly burnt on a flame (You may use more red chilies as per your taste.)

4 cloves of garlic, peeled (Please check the size in the picture above.)

1 tsp. tamarind pulp

Salt to taste

Method

Using a food processor, grind all ingredients to obtain a coarse paste as shown in the image above.

The chutney is ready!

Notes:

  • As you grind the ingredients, remember to add a little water at a time to ensure that the mixture comes together.
  • Use as little water as possible as otherwise the chutney can turn out to be too watery.
  • This chutney will keep for 1-2 days in the refrigerator. It is best when eaten fresh.

Here is a link to another chutney recipe that I had posted earlier.

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Sweet Pumpkin Fry (Kumbala Bartad) From Coorg

Sweet Pumpkin is a very nutritious vegetable that is high in antioxidants and low on calories. It is also a rich source of minerals like Calcium, Potassium, Phosphorus and Copper. It is a vegetable that is highly recommended for people trying to lose weight. (Source: http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/pumpkin.html)

This vegetable is a staple at every Coorg table. Most families grew this vegetable in their backyard (some still do) and stored it in a cool dry corner of their homes for months.  When needed, they would choose a Pumpkin from their store and make a delicious curry or fry with it.

Here is a simple recipe to make Sweet Pumpkin fry. It preserves the nutrition of this vegetable and enhances its taste with green chillies, coconut and onions. The end result is a dish which is sweet and spicy. It (as also the Sweet Pumpkin curry posted earlier) is a favorite at our breakfast table. We relish it with Akki Votti and a generous helping of ghee!

Ingredients

½ kg Pumpkin (Use tender Pumpkin)

¼ cup grated coconut

Few sprigs of Coriander leaves, chopped fine

Salt to taste

For the tempering:

2 tbsp. oil

¼ tsp. Mustard seeds

1 big Green Chili, slit (can increase it to 2 if you want it spicy)

1 big Onion, sliced

5-8 Curry leaves

Method

  1. Wash and cut the Pumpkin, with its skin, into two. Scoop out the seeds. Slice the two halves into wedges and cut into 1” pieces as shown.
  2. In a pan, heat the oil. When hot, add the mustard seeds and let it splutter. Next, add the sliced onions and fry till it turns pink. Now add the green chilies and the curry leaves and fry for a few seconds.
  3. Now add the cut Pumpkin pieces and stir well. Reduce the flame. Add half a cup of water and salt and mix well. Let this cook on a slow flame until it is done.  Ensure that the Pumpkin does not overcook as then it will reduce to a pulp.
  4. Finally, add the coconut gratings and the coriander leaves and mix well. Remove from fire.

Delicious Sweet Pumpkin fry  or Kumbala Bartad from Coorg is ready to savour. This dish is best served with hot Akki Vottis or Dosas and a dollop of butter or ghee.

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Sweet Pumpkin Fry (Kumbala Palya) From Coorg

 

Mushroom Fry (Kummu Bartad) From Coorg

It is the monsoon season. It is raining in Coorg in southern India. And, when it rains, it pours! In this season, it is a treat to experience the lush green forests, the Coffee and Cardamom plantations and smell the wet earth and also partake of the many delicacies that one can savor only in this season.

One such delicacy is the wild mushroom curry or fry. When it rains, the thunder and lightning are frightening. But, as a result of it, we find a plethora of wild mushrooms from the tiny “Nuch Kuumu” to the giant “Nethale Kuumu” that appear magically in the jungles and plantations. The freshly picked mushrooms are a treat to cook into a curry or a fry.

In the last post, I had shared a recipe from Coorg to make Mushroom curry. In this post, let’s learn the Coorgi way to make a simple Mushroom fry. Since wild mushrooms are hard to get today, you can use button mushrooms to make this dish.

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Mushroom Fry (Kummu Bartad) From Coorg

Ingredients

200 gms Mushrooms

1 medium sized Onion, chopped fine

2 Green Chilies, slit lengthwise

½ tsp Turmeric powder

½ tsp Pepper powder

½ tsp Jeera powder

2 tbsps. Vegetable Oil

Few sprigs of Coriander leaves, chopped fine

Salt to taste

½ tsp. Kachumpuli (Coorg Vinegar)

Method

  1. Wash the mushrooms and cut as shown in the picture.
  2. Mix the Salt, Turmeric, Jeera and Pepper powders into the cut mushrooms and let this mixture sit for 10 minutes.
  3. In a pan, heat 2 tbsps of oil. When hot, add chopped onions and slit green chilies and fry till the onion turns transparent.
  4. Add the mushrooms and stir well. Add ½ cup of water and cook on a slow flame till the mushrooms are tender.
  5. Add Kachumpuli and mix well. Keep stirring till all the moisture evaporates. Remove from fire and add the chopped coriander leaves and mix well.

Mushroom fry is ready!

This is best served with hot akki votti, chapathi or rice. It is also a great topping for bread.

Notes:

  1. For this recipe, I have used Button Mushrooms. You can use any variety of mushroom that you like.
  2. If you do not have access to Kachumpuli, you can use lime juice. Though it does not give the same taste or color, it still will serve the purpose of adding sourness to the dish.

Mushroom (Kummu) Curry From Coorg

Coorg in Southern India, receives heavy rainfall. The rains bring with it great cheer. During this season, the forests and the plantations come alive with wild mushrooms, crabs, fish, bamboo shoots and bracken ferns, all of which are a delicacy! Ask anyone from Coorg and they will tell you!

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Wild Mushrooms

The wild mushrooms are used to make a delicious curry. To find these mushrooms, people would walk through the jungles and estates early in the morning. There was a time when these mushrooms used to be collected in gunny bags. Today they are rare to find.

Here is a recipe to make Mushroom curry with button mushrooms which are easily available.

Ingredients

1/2 kg Mushrooms

1 tsp. Chili powder

½ tsp. Turmeric powder

2 tsp. Coriander powder

1 tsp. Cumin powder

Salt to taste

1/4 tsp. Kachumpuli (Coorg Vinegar)

To be ground to a paste:

½ fresh large coconut; 1/2 tsp. Cumin seeds

For the seasoning:

2 tbsp. oil; ¼ tsp. mustard seeds; 1 medium sized onion, chopped fine, 10-15 curry leaves

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Sliced Button Mushrooms

Method

  1. Wash and clean mushrooms and slice as shown in the picture.
  2. Mix in chili, coriander, cumin, turmeric powders and salt into the mushrooms and keep aside for 10 minutes.
  3. Heat oil in a pan. When hot, put in mustard seeds and let it sputter. Add chopped onions and fry till it turns pink. Add the curry leaves and fry for a minute. Add mushrooms and stir. Add 1 cup of water. Cook on low heat till mushrooms are tender.
  4. Add the ground coconut paste and mix well. Cook on low heat till the gravy thickens.
  5. Finally, add kachumpuli, stir and remove from fire. Add fresh coriander leaves before serving.

Mushroom curry is ready!

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Mushroom Curry From Coorg

Serve hot with rice or akki votti.

Notes:

  1. This curry can be made with any mushroom. While the distinct flavors of the wild mushrooms cannot be recreated, it still is a tasty curry.
  2. If you do not have access to Kachumpuli, you can use lime juice. Though it does not give the same taste or color, it still will serve the purpose of adding sourness to the dish.

 

Wild Mango Curry (Kaad Maange Curry) From Coorg

It is the season for mangoes of all shapes and sizes! In India, we are blessed to have a large variety of mangoes. Of these, there is a special mango that grows in the forests of Kodagu or Coorg in Southern India. This mango is a wild variety and has a very different taste. It is sweet and sour and has a peppery tang, which is very unique. Like all other mangoes, these mangoes are rich in fibre and are packed with nutrition.

Wild Mangoes From Coorg

In this post, I’ll share a recipe for a delectable curry that we make using these wild mangoes. It is a dish we absolutely love and the flavors are unparalleled. It is always a pleasure to see everyone eat this curry with delight, enjoying every morsel. The best part of this dish is getting to eat a mango kernel and sucking it of all the juices it has absorbed!

WildMangoCurry

Wild Mango Curry From Coorg

Let us see how to make wild mango curry.

 

Ingredients

6 semi-ripe wild mangoes

1/2 tsp. red chili powder

1 tsp. Turmeric powder

½ tsp. Coriander powder

¼ tsp. Cumin powder

Salt to taste

2 tbsp grated Jaggery, dissolved in ¼ cup water and strained

Grind to a powder:

1 tsp. Coriander seeds; ¼ tsp. Cumin seeds; ¼ tsp. Mustard seeds, a pinch of Fenugreek seeds

For the seasoning, you’ll need:

1 tbsp. oil

¼ tsp. Mustard seeds

1-2 dry Red chilies, broken and deseeded

6-8 Curry leaves

2-3 cloves of Garlic, crushed

1 medium-sized Onion, chopped

1-2 green chillies, slit and deseeded

Method

  1. Wash the mangoes and slice each mango on either sides of the seed so that you get three slices including the seed. Place the cut mangoes in a bowl. Add chily powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and salt. Mix well. Set it aside for 10 minutes.
  2. Heat a tawa or frying pan and on a slow flame roast the corainder seeds, the cumin, the mustard and the fenugreek for a few seconds each, one at a time. Stir constantly to avoid burning. Cool and grind to a fine powder. This should give you a black masala.
  3. Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds to it and when it sputters, add the onion. When the onions soften, add the broken red chilies, garlic, curry leaves and the green chilies. Fry for a minute.
  4. Now, add the marinated mangoes. Add 1 cup of water and cook the mangoes on a slow flame till done (would take 5-7 minutes). Make sure that you keep stirring the dish every few minutes.
  5. Next, add the powdered masala and jaggery. Mix well. Cook till the gravy thickens.

Wild Mango curry is ready. This is best served with hot rice or Akki Vottis.

Notes:

  1. You can remove the skin and use the whole mango without slicing it. I prefer to leave the skin on and slice it. You can choose to make it your way.
  2. If you do not have access to these mangoes, don’t be disheartened! You can make  this curry with locally available mangoes. In such a case, use semi-ripe mangoes and cut them into small pieces. Though the same flavors cannot be recreated, it still tastes good.

Mixed Vegetable Curry-1 (Kootu Curry From Coorg)

Mixed Vegetable Curry From Corgi

Here’s a delicious curry from Coorg. This curry is made using more than one vegetable like beans, potatoes and carrots. It has a coconut based gravy infused with spices and is a great accompaniment for akki vottis, chapatis and rice.

Here’s what you’ll need to make this curry.

Ingredients

French Beans, a handful

Small Potatoes, 2

Carrot, 1

Toor Dal, 3 tbsps.

½ cup grated Coconut and 1/2 tsp. Cumin seeds ground to a fine paste

½ tsp. Cumin powder

1 tbsp. Coriander powder

1/2 tsp. red chilly powder

Salt to taste

1 tsp. Tamarind juice

1 small Tomato, chopped fine

2 cups water

For the seasoning:

1 tbsp. oil

¼ tsp. Mustard seeds

10-12 Curry leaves

4-5 cloves of Garlic, crushed

Cut vegetables

Method

  1. Wash, peel and cut the vegetables as shown in the picture.
  2. Wash the Toor dal and let it soak in water for 5 minutes. Add a dash of turmeric powder and a few drops of cooking oil and cook the Toor dal till done.
  3. To the cooked dal, add the vegetables, the spice powders and the chopped tomatoes and cook till the vegetables are cooked. Ensure that the vegetables are firm and not mushy.
  4. Next, add the coconut paste, tamarind juice and salt. Mix well and boil for 1-2 minutes.
  5. In a pan or degchi, heat oil. Add the mustard seeds, the curry leaves and the garlic and fry till it turns golden. Add this to the curry and mix well.

Our mixed vegetable curry or Kootu curry is ready!

Notes:

For this curry, you can use beans, carrots, potatoes, peas and other similar vegetables.

 

 

Thambuttu, a Sweet Dish From Coorg

Last month all of us celebrated the harvest festival in Coorg known as Puthari or Huthari. On this occasion we make a sweet dish out of ripe bananas which is called Thambuttu. This dish is very easy to make and is very nutritious since it contains ripe bananas, roasted sesame seeds, grated coconut and is served with clarified butter or ghee.

Thambuttu from Coorg

Thambuttu from Coorg

Here’s how to make it.

Ingredients

3 ripe bananas

2 tbsp. Thambuttu powder

A pinch of salt

2 tbsp. grated coconut

1 tsp. roasted sesame seeds (white)

1 tsp. melted ghee or clarified butter

Method

  1. Mash the bananas.
  2. Mix the thambuttu powder into it a little at a time till the mixture holds its shape. Add more thambuttu powder, if needed.
  3. Transfer this mixture into a serving bowl. Make a depression at the centre. Sprinkle the grated coconut and the roasted sesame seeds.  Pour the melted ghee into the depression.

The Thambuttu is now ready to savor!

To make the Thambuttu Powder, you’ll need

1 cup par boiled rice, washed and dried

¼ tsp. fenugreek seeds

Seeds of two cardamoms

Method

  1. Roast the rice on a slow flame till it turns brown.
  2. Roast the fenugreek seeds gently.
  3. Similarly roast the cardamom seeds.
  4. When cool, powder all the ingredients to obtain the Thambuttu powder.

This can be preserved in an air tight container for several months.

 

Sweet Pumpkin Curry (Kumbala Curry From Coorg)

Sweet Pumpkin Curry is yet another favorite at our breakfast table. The sweet Pumpkin is packed with nutrition and this simple recipe makes eating it a treat! Here is the recipe.

Ingredients

1 kg Pumpkin (Use a tender Pumpkin with green skin)

½ tsp. Turmeric powder

1 tsp. Coriander powder

1” piece jaggery

Salt to taste

Grind to a fine paste:

¼ cup freshly grated Coconut; 2 green chilies slit

For the tempering:

2 tbsp. oil

¼ tsp. Mustard seeds

1 dried Red Chili

4 cloves of Garlic, crushed

5-8 curry leaves

Method

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  1. Wash and cut the Pumpkin, with its skin, into two. Scoop out the seeds. Slice the two halves into wedges and cut into 1” pieces as shown.
  2. Place the Pumpkin pieces in a pan with just enough water to cover it. Add turmeric powder, coriander powder and salt. Cook on a slow fire till tender. Take care that the pumpkin does not reduce to a pulp.
  3. Add the ground coconut and chili paste and stir well. Let this boil for a few minutes. Set aside.
  4. In a separate pan, heat oil for tempering.
  5. When hot, put in the mustard seeds and allow it to splutter.
  6. Next, add the red chili and garlic.
  7. When the garlic becomes slight brown, add the curry leaves. Turn off the heat.
  8. Add this seasoning to the Pumpkin curry and stir well.

Serve hot with Akki Votti or Dosa.

White Chick Peas (Kabuli Chana) Curry

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Ingredients

½ cup White Chick Peas or Kabuli Chana (soaked overnight)

1 Tomato, cut into 4 pieces

1 Onion, cut into 4 pieces

10 Cashewnuts

1 tsp Melon seeds

1 Cardamom

½” piece Cinnamon

2 Cloves

½ tsp Ginger-Garlic paste

½ tsp Garam Masala

½ tsp Red Chili Powder

½ tsp Coriander Powder

½ tsp Turmeric Powder

1 tsp Kasuri Methi

1 tsp fresh cream

Method

  1. Pressure cook the soaked chana in two cups of water till done. It may require 5-6 whistles. Set it aside.
  2. Cook the onion, tomato, cashewnuts and melon seeds for 5 minutes and grind it to a fine paste.
  3. Heat oil. Add the cardamom, cloves and cinnamon. Add the ginger garlic paste and fry for a minute.
  4. Next, add the paste made in step 2. To that, add the garam masala, red chilli powder and coriander powder. Fry this mixture for a few minutes.
  5. Add the boiled chana and mix well. Add salt to taste. Let this mixture boil well. Once it is done, add the Kasuri methi and the fresh cream. The Chickpeas Curry is ready to serve.

Maddu Kool (Medicinal Rice)

thejoyofhealthycooking

In Coorg, during the monsoon we celebrate the 18th day of the month of Kakkada in August as ‘Kakkada Padinet’. This month begins in July and ends in August. This year, the 18th day was yesterday. On this day, a plant known as “maddu thoppu” (medicine leaf) in Coorg and Kurinji in Kerala, the botanical name being Justicia Wynaadensis, is believed to contain 18 varieties of herbal medicine and the plant emits a pleasant aroma.

IMG_0734 Justicia Wynaadensis

The leaves plucked on this day are boiled to yield a dark purple extract. Sweet porridge (Maddu Kool) and cakes are made using this juice. Today let’s learn to make Maddu Kool.

Ingredients

For the extract

A bunch of leaves and stems from the Justicia Wynaadensis plant

Method 1

Bruise the leaves and stems and soak overnight in enough water to cover the leaves. Boil this in the morning for half…

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