Its “Ramayana Month ” or “Karkkidakam” for we malyalees now, this month is often referred as “Panja Masam” (the month of extreme scarcity). This month is said to bring out many discomforts in the forms of ailments, diseases and sufferings. The body needs to be rejuvenated at this time. It’s during this month we Malyalees have Karkkidaka kanji/porridge , uluva/fenugreek kanji , soups and stifry/thoran with different leafy vegetables ( except drumstick leaves).
This recipe belongs to my maternal grandmother ( ammamma) , she used to make this in Kalchatti, as it gives a distinct flavor.You could do this in pressure cooker as well. Taro stem/thalu can be used for making different recipes , this is a basic gravy recipe for lunch.
Ingredients: serves 3-4
- Taro stem/thalin thandu : 1 cup chopped( 250 ml cup)
- turmeric powder : 1/4 tsp
- red chilli powder : 3/4 tsp
- green chillies : 2 , cut digonally
- toor dal : 1/4 cup
- salt : as required
- water : 1.5 cup** refer notes
- coconut grated : 3/4 cup
- cumin seeds : a pinch
- water : 1/4 cup or less
Tamarind juice : 1 small lemon size , soak it in 1 tbsp water , squeeze out juice after 10 minutes
- Mustard seeds : 1/2 tsp
- fenugreek seeds : 1.4 tsp
- shallots/kochulli : 5-6 , sliced
- dried red chillies : 3-4 no
- curry leaves : handful
- coconut oil : 2 tsp
- Grind together coconut , cumin seed and water into a fine paste and set aside
- Pressure cook toor dal until done.
- In a heavy bottom pan , add taro stem and other items under ” to cook” and cook until done.
- Alternatively , you could pressure cook it by adding it into cooked toor dal for 3-4 whistles.
- Once its cooked well, open the pressure cooker and add the tamarind juice and bring to boil. salt check add if necessary
- let it cook for 5 minutes and then bring down the flame and add the coconut paste.
- Do not cook/boil after adding the paste, let it simmer for 2-3 minutes.
- Switch off the flame.
- In another pan add oil and temper the items mentioned under it, adding sliced shallots towards the end and leaving them to brown.
- Pour this temper over the curry and cover immediately. Serve hot with rice .:)