Winged Bean and Dhal Curry

For this month, I am sharing a simple and delicious curry together with some 70s – 90s music from Sweden. DSC01073The following music clips takes me back to the early 90s when I listened quite a lot to these three Swedish music groups. How could I not start the music feature on music from Sweden without a song from ABBA? Actually, I was never a fan of their music but I listened to a lot of their music back then because some of my friends were huge fans and kept playing them a lot that some of the songs kind of seeped into my song lists. This very popular song is one such. There was a time in the early 90s when MTV played a huge part in introducing me to a lot of popular music. The next two song clips are from that time. The second song is ‘Don’t turn around’ by Ace of Base. The final song for this month is Roxette’s ‘It must have been love’.
Hope you enjoy trying out the curry and that you enjoyed going on a nostalgic trip back to the 90s!
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Winged Bean and Dhal Curry

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 30mins
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print
Ingredients:

  • Winged beans – ¼ cup
  • Mysore dhal – ½ cup
  • Green chillies – 2
  • Onion – ½
  • Fennel seeds – 1 tsp
  • Curry leaves – a sprig
  • Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
  • Pepper – ½ or 1 tsp
  • Crushed chillies – ¼ tsp
  • Salt, to taste
  • Vegetable oil – 1 tbsp
  • Coconut or non-fat milk – 2 or 3 tbsp (optional)

Method

  1. Wash and chop the winged beans, green chillies and onion.
  2. Heat a tbsp of oil in a pan and fry the fennel seeds. Add the chopped onion, chillies and curry leaves and continue frying for 2 – 3 mins.
  3. Add the chopped winged beans to the pan and stir.
  4. Wash the dhal and add the dhal to the pan together with a cup of water and ½ tsp turmeric powder. Cook for 15 mins
  5. Add the pepper, salt and crushed chillies towards the end of the cooking. Stir well
  6. While the curry is good as it is, if you like to add milk, you can add 2-3 tbsp coconut or non-fat milk and cook for a few mins more.
  7. Remove from heat and serve warm with rice.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

Odiyal Pittu

This month, I have been sharing some recipes using palmyrah root which is an ingredient used in traditional North Sri Lankan cooking.

Odiyal (palmyrah root) flour

Odiyal (palmyrah root) flour


Odiyal flour ground from palmyrah root has a high calcium content and is very nutritious. To wrap the palmyrah feature, I would like to share my mother’s recipe for ‘odiyal pittu’.

And to wrap up a special month, I would like to share a couple of songs from my all-time favourite rock band – Queen. The first song is from the 14th Queen studio album.

This clip is from the 15th album, Made in Heaven, released in 1995.

Have a lovely weekend!
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Odiyal Pittu

  • Servings: 2-3
  • Time: 30mins
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • Odiyal flour – 1/2 cup
  • Ash plantain – 1, boiled and peeled
  • Jackfruit seeds – a handful, chopped & boiled
  • pasali keerai or spinach
  • Small onions – 2 or 3
  • Green chillies – 1 or 2
  • Carrot – small piece
  • Yardlong beans – 1 or 2
  • Mango – 1 or 2 tbsp, chopped
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Method:

  1. Mix the odiyal flour with a little water and make the raw pittu.
  2. Add a little salt and all the chopped vegetables to the flour and mix well. Steam the pittu.
  3. Once the steaming is finished, just sprinkle with pepper when you remove the pittu from heat.
  4. Serve warm.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

Pulukodiyal Candy

Wishing you all a happy New Year! (the Sri Lankan New Year, or more precisely the Sri Lankan Buddhist and Hindu New Year)

For today’s recipe, I decided to share a non-traditional New Year recipe. Something simple and tasty to make. My mother sometimes makes this candy when she receives too much of ‘pulukodiyal’ (sun-dried palmyrah root) from visiting relatives from the north. I would like to share this with you today. Palmyrah root is full of calcium and therefore considered nutritious in the north of Sri Lanka where it is harvested regularly.

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Sliced sun-dried palmyrah root

Today, I would like to feature songs from two music groups that I have enjoyed listening to occasionally during the past decade. I was introduced to Il Divo’s music in a surreal setting in early December 2004. I was travelling on work to the north of the country and as the vehicle sped across dusty, remote roads, the radio belted out pop songs of the year. Suddenly, the powerful operatic voice of the four broke through the stifling heat surrounding the landscape we passed through. It was a special experience. The first song that I share here is the song that I listened to that hot afternoon over a decade ago.

The second is by Celtic Woman. Not sure how I came across their music but I did somewhere along the past decade. I liked their songs to the extent that I went for their concert when they performed at Theatre Royal Drury Lane in November last year. It was a fun experience.

Hope you enjoy the two songs and do try out the candy, if you happen upon some dried palmyrah root!
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Wish you the best for the New Year!

Pulukodiyal Candy

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 10 mins
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • Sliced ‘pulukodiyal’ – 1 cup
  • Roasted gram – 2 tbsp
  • Sugar – ¼ cup
  • Water

Method:

  1. Let the water and sugar simmer till it thickens into a syrup.
  2. Add the roasted gram and pulukodiyal and stir well, before removing from heat.
  3. Let it cool and the candied pulukodiyal is ready for eating.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan

Odiyal Kool

Today is my mother’s birthday and I felt like re-sharing one of my mother’s favourite recipes. Odiyal Kool is a traditional dish from north Sri Lanka and can be made as a vegetarian or non-vegetarian version. Today’s recipe is a vegetarian dish. OK1 For today’s music feature, I wish to share some song clips from youTube from the official vevo site of one of my favourite singers – Andrea Bocelli. The first is a music video of the song ‘Canto Della Terra’. The second song ‘Con Te Partiro’ is from a 2011 concert. I liked more an earlier version, where he sings with Sarah Brightman, but could not find it on the official site. The last clip is the music video of the song with Laura Pausini ‘Dare to Live’. Hope you enjoy the music and the recipe! Ok2

Odiyal Kool

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Time: 45mins
  • Difficulty: average
  • Print
Ingredients

  • Odiyal Flour – 1 cup
  • Chopped mixed vegetables (brinjal/ katharikkai, jackfruit seeds/ palakottai, yardlong beans/ paithangai, small green leaves/ pasali keerai or murungai ilai, manioc, ash plantain) – 100g each
  • Boiled rice – ½ cup
  • Dried red chillies – 5- 10, according to your taste
  • Cumin seeds – 1 tbsp
  • Pepper powder – 1tbsp
  • Tamarind extract – ½ cup
  • Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Water – 1 1/2 litres

Method:

  1. Dry grind the cumin seeds, red chillies and pepper and keep aside.
  2. Boil the vegetables in a pot with half litre water.
  3. Add another litre of water, along with the tamarind extract.
  4. As the water comes to a boil, slowly stir in the odiyal flour, avoiding lumps.
  5. Add the boiled rice to the pot.
  6. Add the ground spice mixture and the turmeric powder to the pot and salt to taste. Let it come to a boil.
  7. You can add a little water to adjust the consistency to your liking, e.g. if the water has dried up or you prefer a watery Kool.
  8. Serve hot in medium-sized bowls.

Recipe Source: Raji Thillainathan.

Chana Bateta

This month I am featuring the Bohra cuisine of Sri Lanka courtesy of Zahabia Adamaly. She shares here a recipe from a recipe book with permission from the authors. This is what Zahabia wrote to me about the dish.

“This is a popular dish used as a side to a main meal in Bohra meals. We also often have it as a snack or a light dinner because it is both filling and nutritious. The chickpeas and potatoes can be tempered as stated in the recipe and kept in the fridge for a few days. It can then be lightly warmed and mixed with the tamarind sauce and garnished just before serving. It is also tasty with a little yoghurt added into the above mix.

This recipe is from “From our Kitchen” a privately published recipe book by Femida Jafferjee and Sakina Galely.” Chana Bateta

Chana Bateta

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 45mins+ overnight soaking
  • Difficulty: moderate
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Ingredients:

  • 250gms (8ozs) chick peas (Chana)
  • 4 medium sized potatoes
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tablespoon garlic paste
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seed (jeeru)
  • 2-3 green chillies
  • Pinch of turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander and cumin seed powder
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon chillie powder
  • 2 tablespoons gram flour
  • Curry leaves
  • Pinch of soda bicarbonate

Tamarind chutney:

  • 100gms tamarind
  • 200gms (8ozs) jaggery grated
  • 1 teaspoon chillie powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 cup of water
  • Coriander leaves

Mix all together and boil. When tamarind is soft, jaggery has dissolved and is thick, remove and strain. Method: Soak the chickpeas overnight in water with a pinch of soda bicarbonate. In the morning throw the water. Add fresh water with little salt and boil chana in pressure cooker till soft. Do not throw the water remaining. Boil potatoes separately and cut into cubes. Heat oil in a pan and fry the onion, when it becomes transparent, add the garlic paste, curry leaves and whole cumin seed. When garlic gets light brown, add green chillies, turmeric, coriander/ cumin powder and red chillie powder. Cook for 2-3 mins, then add the gram flour and saute, for a further 5 minutes. Add boiled chickpeas with the water and allow to cook for a while. Add tamarind chutney as required. (the amount given may be more). Add the potatoes and serve garnished with coriander. Recipe source: Femida Jafferjee and Sakina Galely

Scheduling posts…

I just checked my blog and saw a post that should never have been there. That’s the hazard of scheduling posts ahead during times you are going to be busy and then forgetting to complete writing those posts. I had wanted to share one of my sister’s delicious quiche tart adaptation –  wild garlic flower tart. I scheduled it for this month some time back but never got around to finishing up the writing of the post and then forgot completely about it.  My apologies for the post and thank you to those who commented on it and liked it.

I will post a recipe later this month from the Bohra cuisine of Sri Lanka, sent in by a friend and former colleague.

Brinjal Curry

My recipe for february is a recipe from home – a recipe of my mother. This blog has been helpful to myself these past few months, as I have tried out one of my mother’s recipes that I shared here, when I find myself missing home. While I have shared three brinjal recipes of my mother before – katharikkai curry, katharikkai vathakkal and brinjal and green peas curry, today’s recipe is another way my mother cooks brinjal. It is a simple and very easy to make recipe, that I very much like, and is great with rice. Sharing this recipe at the Virtual Vegan Linky Potluck #30.
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Today, I would like to share some popular French music from the 60s that I like. Starting with my favourite French singer – Edith Piaf. I started listening to her songs after watching the movie ‘La Vie En Rose’. This clip is one of her more famous songs – Non, Je ne regrette rien (1965).

The other song for today is considered the signature song of Charles Aznavour – La Boheme (1960).

Hope you enjoy the music while you try out this simple curry recipe! Have a lovely weekend!
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Brinjal Curry

  • Servings: 3
  • Time: 20 mins
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • Brinjal – 1 cup, chopped
  • Green chilli – 1
  • Onion – 1/4, chopped
  • Coconut milk – 1/2 cup (thin) + 1/4 cup (thick)
  • Curry leaves
  • Salt, to taste
  • Lime juice

Method:

  1. Cook the chopped brinjal together with the chopped onion, green chilli and curry leaves in 1/2 cup of thin coconut milk for around 10 minutes. Add salt to taste.
  2. Then add 1/4 cup thick coconut milk and simmer for 5 mins.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in some fresh lime juice.
  4. Serve warm with rice.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan