January 24, 2008

Vegetable Stew

I have never learnt to make any Mallu (Keralite) food. Maybe it was because I had easy access to it whenever I wanted. The only things I think I attempted to make were the Kadala Curry and Egg Curry after inspiration from Sig. There's a lot of stuff that I make that is so similar to Keralite food. My everyday upkari becomes a thoran in Kerala. I could pass off my proper Iyengar avial as a Keralite dish. But to me these foods are not typical of the only state in southern India that I am not connected to directly. (Being someone from Karnataka and Tamilnadu, I'm married to someone from Andhra Pradesh!) These are foods that I have grown up eating and can hence only think of them as Konkani or Tamil, however similar they may be.

Stew is quite another story. I can't remember where I first had it. But I remember licking my lips as I placed in my mouth the last piece of appam soaked with the remnants of the stew in my bowl. And I remember that taste as so distinctly Keralite. I have made this quite often and I used to take it to my uncle after my aunt passed away. It was the last dish I took to him on my way to work. I made this yesterday for the first time since then.

1 cup Coconut Milk
1 tsp Oil
1 cup Mixed Vegetables (Potatoes, Carrots, Beans, Cauliflower and Peas), boiled
1/2 cup Onions, sliced
7-8 Curry Leaves
8-10 Pepper Corns
1 Cardamom Pod (optional)
1" stick Cinnamon
3 Cloves
2 Green Chillies, slit
Salt to taste

Heat the oil and add the curry leaves and onions. Add the cinnamon, cloves, peppercorns (and cardamom, if using) and the green chillies. Fry these for a few minutes. Add the boiled vegetables and the coconut milk along with a little water. Add the salt and mix well. Crush some of the potatoes to thicken the stew. Allow it to thicken and then take off the flame.

I love stew with appams, but figured that it tastes great with rice too. Off this goes to Jyothsna of Curry Bazaar for this month's RCI - Kerala.


amna said...

i love stew! in fact, anything coconut or coconut milk based! :D

Sia said...

yes, it tastes good with steaming bowl of rice too:)

Unknown said...

Just made this for dinner with aapams - our first time trying it at home, while I am yet to aquire a taste for this, S absolutely LOVED it - ate enough to fall asleep on the flight he'll be boarding shortly...and I am beaming thanks to all the posting the same soon for RCI- my recipe is slightly diff from yours :)
We think TOO alike...however I did not make this specially for RCI, wanted to use the Aapam ready mix i'd bought long ago, and then once I made the stew I remembered RCI kerala is on too!

Unknown said...

Hi Raaga, Will drop back to see the picture!

Raaga said...

@Nags: I love it too... coconut milk more than coconut.

@Sia: Yeah... we loved it.

@Nandita: Wow... we do think alike... would love to see your recipe :-)

@Poonam: This evening :-) for sure.

Anonymous said...

Just a tip from a mallu... try using cashew-paste instead of the cornflour as thickening agent. Added with the coconut milk :)

Sig said...

Hey, didn't we establish I am your Kerala connection? :)
Stew is great with rice and appam.. I don't add corn flour normally, I will try with that next time... I also like the cashew paste tip from the anonymous here...

bee said...

istu. repeat after me istooooo. :D

Raaga said...

@Anon: Thanks

@Sig: I didn't use the cornflour either... but the person who taught me to, told me to put it.
And I'll remember from now on that I am directly connected to Kerala through you... how can I forget the kadala curry?

@Bee: Istu... istu... :-)

Rajitha said...

after reading so many recipes of stew..i am finally going to make it..i have gotten waay too tempted!