The harvest festival of Kerala, Onam, is celebrated for four days. The second day sees the entire family gathering together to a grand feast.
The food purely vegetarian, is served on a banana leaf. Susan and Abraham Chacko share a few recipes you could add to the menu to make your Onam Sadhya memorable this year.
This is a simple yet delicious lentil dish from Kerala that features white gourd. The meaty, nutty Chana Dal blends perfectly great with this mild and sweet tasting gourd. Serve this hot with ghee drizzled on brown rice, yoghurt curry and pappadam.
To boil in the first lot:
Kumbalanga/white/ash gourd - 200 grams
Water - 300 ml
Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp
Chilli Powder - 1/4 tsp
Salt - to taste To boil in the second lot:
Chana Dal - 2 cups
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Salt - to taste To grind:
Desiccated Coconut - 1 cup
Green Chilli - 2 nos
Cumin Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Water - 100 ml Tadka (tempering):
Oil - 1 tbsp
Mustard Seeds - 1/4 tsp
Dried Red Chilli - 2 nos
Curry Leaves - 2 sprigs
Coconut Slices - 1 cup (optional)
Wash in 2 changes the Chana Dal and soak in Water overnight.
Peel, de-seed and wash and cut Gourd into small 1x1 inch cubes.
Take all ingredients in a grinder under `Grind` section and add 100 ml boiling Water, leave it till needed. You will see the difference by adding boiling water, the desiccated coconut becomes soft and ready for the grind.
Gives a better result in terms of smoothness.
Grind to a smooth paste.
Take the first lot of ingredients and bring to boil.
Lower the flame and allow to simmer for about 20 minutes till the water almost gets dried.
Take the second lot in a pressure cooker, bring to 1 whistle.
Lower flame and simmer for 20 minutes.
Once the water gets almost dried in the first lot then add the coconut paste, cook for about 5 minutes till the raw taste is gone.
Add the cooked lentil to the above and allow it to blend well for about 3-4 minutes.
Meanwhile in a separate non-stick pan, heat oil, splutter mustard seeds, curry leaves, coconut slices (if using) stir for about 2-3 minutes.
Now add the red chilli pieces and stir for another minute and add to the the above mix.