Green Beans Curry

I have not been as active on this blog during the past year in comparison to my first year. That was bound to happen at some point. It follows that after a year of much activity on this blog, I was relatively quieter in the last twelve months especially as I was away from home. It did not mean I stopped cooking. On the contrary, I did a lot of cooking much more than I do when I am at home but they were less focused on Sri Lankan recipes and when I did cook something Sri Lankan, I would choose one of my mother’s recipes already posted on this blog. I have been doing a lot of baking and I am delighted that I am now able to make delicious scones and pretty decent rye bread.

Having returned home last month, I look forward to resuming posting on this blog.

Today’s recipe is a simple green beans curry which I really like.

green beans curry

Green Beans Curry

  • Servings: 3
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • Green beans  – 1 cup, chopped into 1” pieces
  • Onion – ½, chopped
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig
  • Fennel seeds – 1 tsp
  • Curry powder – 1 tsp
  • Salt, to taste
  • Water – 1 cup
  • Coconut milk – ¼ cup

Method:

  1. Fry the chopped green beans, onion, curry leaves and fennel seeds lightly in a little oil for about 2 mins.
  2. Add the water, chilli powder and salt to taste.
  3. Cover and simmer over low heat for about 15 – 20 mins, until cooked.
  4. Add coconut milk and a little chilli powder, if the spice level is not sufficient.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan

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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!
DSC01074

Winged Bean and Dhal Curry

  • Servings: 4
  • 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 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
  • 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.

Sambhar Rice

The rice dish for today is Sambhar Rice.

Sambhar RiceAs sambhar refers to a mixed vegetable stew like dish, I thought of mimicking the dish in my featured music groups today.

Starting with Thriloka, a fusion band formed in 2005 blending traditional Sri Lankan folk music and progressive rock.

The second clip features Paranoid Earthling, whose music is a blend of experimental and psychedelic rock. The song shared here was first performed by them on the international peace day in 2008.

The last clip features Chitral Somapala and Civilization One, a power metal band, which is not a Sri Lankan band but I decided to feature them by extending the definition to include the Sri Lankan who launched the band.

Enjoy the Sri Lankan rock music scene as you try out the recipe!

Sambhar Rice

Time taken: 45 mins

Serves 4

Sambhar rice2

Ingredients:

  • Par-boiled red rice – 1 cup
  • Carrots – ½ cup, chopped
  • Beans – ½ cup, chopped
  • Brinjal – ½ cup, chopped
  • Mysore dhal – ¼ cup
  • Onion – ½, chopped
  • Chilli – 1, chopped
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig
  • Tamarind juice – ½ cup
  • Curry powder – 1 tsp
  • Pepper – ½ tsp
  • Garlic cloves – 4 or 5, crushed
  • Salt, to taste

Method:

  1. Boil the rice and keep aside.
  2. Separately, cook the vegetables (carrots, beans and brinjal) and dhal together with the chopped onion, chilli and curry leaves in a cup of water.
  3. When the water dries up, add the tamarind juice add the curry powder, pepper powder, crushed garlic cloves and salt to the vegetables.
  4. Once the sambhar starts to thicken, add the rice, mix well and let it simmer for 5 to 10 mins.
  5. Serve the sambhar rice with pappadum.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

Beans with Carrot Sauce

Today’s recipe is one of my mother’s sauce recipes. For another of my mother’s similarly interesting sauce recipes, check out ash plantain and carrot with beetroot sauce.

Beans with Carrot Sauce

Time taken: 30 mins

Serves 4

Beans with Carrot SauceIngredients:

  • Beans – 1 cup, chopped
  • Carrot – 1
  • Onion – ½
  • Ginger – 1 tsp, finely chopped
  • Garlic – 1 tsp, finely chopped
  • Green chilli – 1
  • Low fat oil – 1 tbsp

Method:

  1. Clean and chop the beans and carrots. Boil the beans and carrots in water, adding a little salt, for about 10 mins.
  2. Separate the cooked carrots from the beans. Drain the beans, keeping the water aside for re-use.  Transfer the cooked beans to the serving dish.
  3. Heat a tbsp oil in a pan and fry the chopped onion, ginger, garlic and chilli for a couple of mins before adding the cooked carrots and continuing to stir-fry for an extra minute or two.
  4. After cooling slightly, blend the carrot mixture from the pan.
  5. In a sauce pan, heat the previously cooked water, together with the ground carrot mixture, that was kept aside. Adjust salt, as per taste.
  6. Pour the carrot sauce over the beans and serve warm.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

Soya bean and Kangkung Stir-fry

Of the four soya bean dishes my mother prepared last week, I like this easy-to-prepare soya bean and kangkung stir fry dish the most.

Soya bean and Kangkung stir-fry

Time taken: 15 mins (with pre-cooked soya beans)

Serves 2

Soya bean and kangkung stir fryIngredients:

  • Soya beans – ¼ cup, boiled
  • Kangkung – ½ cup, chopped
  • Onion – ½
  • Green chilli – 1
  • Dried red chilli – 1
  • Fennel seeds – 1 tsp
  • Coconut – 1 tbsp
  • Curry powder –  1 tsp
  • Salt, to taste
  • Low fat oil – 1 tbsp

Method:

  1. Clean and finely chop the kangkung.
  2. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan and sauté the fennel seeds, chopped green and dried red chillies and onion for 1-2 mins.
  3. Add the soya beans to the pan. Stir fry for another 2 mins.
  4. Mix in the kangkung and cook for 2- 3 mins over low heat.
  5. Add the freshly scraped coconut and continue stir frying for a few minutes before adding the curry powder. Continue cooking for another couple of minutes before removing pan from stove.
  6. Serve warm with rice.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

Soya bean Vadai

Today’s recipe is a snack made from soya beans – a crunchy soya bean vadai.

Soya bean Vadai

Time taken: 15 – 20 mins (using pre-cooked soya beans)

Makes 6 or 7

Soya bean VadaiIngredients:

  • Soya beans – ½ cup, boiled
  • All-purpose flour – ½ cup
  • Onion – ½, chopped
  • Crushed chillies – 2 tsp
  • Fennel seeds – 1 tsp
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig, chopped
  • Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
  • Salt, to taste
  • Low fat oil, for deep-frying

Method:

  1. Mix all the ingredients in a mixing bowl to prepare the ‘vadai’ dough. Divide the dough into small balls, around 6 or 7. Flatten each slightly.
  2. Heat the oil in a pan. When the oil is ready for frying, drop the ‘vadai’ in batches into the heated oil and deep fry them until they are golden brown on both sides.
  3. Serve warm with some Sri Lankan tea.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.