Friday, September 14, 2012

Nostalgic Aviyal

Well, it is true that we all love our mothers & they are the most special ones in all our lives. One of the reasons from the ever-long list is their strong intuition. 
A few days back I was missing my mom, so I decided to call her up & hey she already knew that I was missing her. We chatted for long that day! 
I had also mentioned how much I missed the food she prepares so lovingly!
So, before we ended the call she asked me to prepare some good lunch for myself  -  Aviyal , ghee rice with some papad. :)

After the call, I checked my refrigerator & found raw papaya, some carrots, coconut & green chillies. 
When we talk about Aviyal we are reminded of many veggies which are put together to prepare this dish however, doesn't matter if you have just one or few veggies to cook. I call this a south - Indian mixed vegetable!
Onions & Garlic are avoided in this dish at my home. However, I've heard many use some onion paste in this.

So let's see what I did.

You will need:
  • Raw Papaya - cut like fingers, about 2 inch long
  • Carrots - also cut lengthwise like fingers
  • Coconut - 1/2 cup dessicated
  • Green chillies - as per tolerance, I took 2
  • Ginger - half an inch bit
  • Cumin seeds - 2 tsp
  • Raw rice - 10 grains
  • Curd - 1 cup beaten
  • Curry leave - few (4 to 5)
  • Salt - as per taste

Take a deep pan & put the papaya & carrots to boil. Add only sufficient water to cook if you want the Aviyal dry or with less gravy. You are free to add more water if you want you Aviyal runny.
Now, grind together the coconut, cumin seeds, green chillies, ginger & raw rice (to thicken Aviyal's consistency). When the vegetables are cooked add the beaten curd, the ground paste & curry leave. Add salt. Cover & cook for another minute or two. Aviyal is ready!

  • You may add beans, drumsticks, broad beans, snake gourd, raw bananas, potatoes, yam & anything you wish. The more the veggies the tastier & nutritious it becomes
  • Serve with steamed rice, hot phulkas (Indian flat bread) or even dosa. I like it with Dosas 
  • This is always a  part of the feasts served in South India especially Kerala

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Rajma / Red Kidney Beans Curry

Rajma Chawal is my all time favourite!

I was introduced to this only in Delhi after I reached here for my Graduation in the year 2002.
Since then I order for this one wherever possible. And, cook whenever I want a quick delicious meal.
Only trouble being I have to soak them for over 7 hours or pressure cook really long if not soaked.
So, I announce the menu a day before I want to indulge in this & I have never been stopped. Yeah! everyone at home loves it too.

You will need:

  • Rajma - 200gms 
  • Onions - 3 (medium & chopped)
  • Tomatoes - 2 (big) or Puree (I used Puree)
  • Green chillies - as per tolerance (I used 3)
  • Ginger Garlic Paste - 1 tsp
  • Cloves - 4
  • Cinnamon sticks - 2
  • Black Cardamom - 1
  • Ghee/Oil - for frying
  • Salt - as per taste

Let's cook it up:

Soak the Rajma overnight & boil it with some salt & ginger. Check the below pic.
 Keep it aside to add into the curry we prepare.

Heat a wok & add the ghee, cloves, cinnamon sticks & black cardamom. Put the chopped onions & saute till it browns & then pour the tomato puree & ginger garlic paste into this. Check pic below.

Now, its time to add the boiled Rajma into this curry. Add water as per the consistency required. Rajma curry is supposed to be thick so mash some of the Rajma in the curry to gain the thick consistency.
Serve hot!


  • The best accompaniment of Rajma is plain boiled rice
  • If you wish, u may add some more masalas like red chilli powder, garam masala powder etc
  • Serve with some onion salad or potato fry

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