Around the World #3: Carrot Sambol and a Round up!

Check out Indu @Indu’s International Kitchen tour of Sri Lankan cuisine.

Indu's International Kitchen

DSC_1214Its time for a round up of all the Sri Lankan recipes that I have made. I have been ogling at and drooling over countless recipes and I did end up making 7 different ones and have more lined up on my pinterest page that I hope to make soon!  My virtual journey has made me even more determined to visit Sri Lanka some day.  The cuisine just resonates with me so much because of the similarities between Kerala and Sri Lankan way of cooking. The liberal use of coconut and the abundance of seafood and spices! Gosh the recipes are so varied – There are simple salads like this carrot sambal that are made using fresh ingredients and serve as a side/ accompaniment to spicy rich dishes.  Then there are stuffed breads,  spicy chicken appetizers like spring rolls/cutlets and delicious curries using coconut milk.  The desserts are amazing too and mostly use rice…

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Breadfruit Curry

I hope 2016 has started out well for all of you.. Wishing you a peaceful year!

My recipe for today is a curry that my mother rarely cooks at home. However, it is quite popular in the south and west of Sri Lanka. Breadfruit is said to have been introduced to Sri Lanka from south-east Asia by the Dutch. Since a friend of my mother’s brought her a breadfruit from their garden, my mother has made a few breadfruit dishes which I have enjoyed.
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So, for today, I am sharing my mother’s recipe for breadfruit curry.
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Breadfruit Curry

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: moderate
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Ingredients:

  • Breadfruit – 1 cup, chopped
  • Fennel seeds – 1 tsp
  • Fenugreek seeds – ½ tsp
  • Onion – 2 tsp, chopped
  • Curry leaves
  • Coconut milk – 1 cup
  • Curry powder – 1 tsp
  • Salt, to taste

Method

  1. Boil the chopped and cleaned breadfruit pieces for around 10 mins. Drain and keep aside.
  2. Lightly fry the fennel seeds, fenugreek seeds, chopped onion and curry leaves in 1 tsp oil in a pan.
  3. Add the boiled breadfruit pieces to the pan and stir for about 2-3 mins.
  4. Add the milk, curry powder and salt. Mix well before covering the pan.
  5. Cook for around 10 mins over medium heat.
  6. Serve with rice.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

 

Samaposha Curry

My mother prefers breakfast food so even when she cooks delicious meals for the rest of the family, she often has cereals for her main meals. Her favourite cereal changes from time to time and for some time last year, it was samaposha. It is a local cereal brand that is pre-cooked and made from corn, soya, green gram and rice. Samaposha is often eaten as breakfast food or sometimes as a mid-day or evening snack when they are made into little samaposha balls by adding a little water and optional grated coconut and sugar.

During my mother’s samaposha phase, she tried out a couple of dishes using samaposha as the key ingredient. The dish I am sharing today, Samaposha curry, is one such experimental dish and it turned out tasty. I had the recipe in my draft folder for so long that I almost forgot about it until today.
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Samaposha Curry

  • Servings: 3
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • Samaposha – ½ cup
  • Rice flour or wheat flour – 1 tbsp
  • Curry powder – 1 tsp
  • Chopped onion – 1
  • Salt, to taste
  • Coconut milk – ½ cup
  • Fenugreek seeds – 1 tsp
  • Cinnamon powder – ½ tsp
  • Curry leaves
  • Oil

Method:

  1. Mix the samaposha, rice or wheat flour, curry powder, some of the chopped onion and salt to taste in a large bowl. Add a little water to make them into balls. Fry them.
  2. Heat 1tbsp oil in a pan and lightly fry the fenugreek seeds and curry leaves.
  3. Add the fried samaposha balls to the pan and mix before adding the coconut milk and cinnamon powder.
  4. Cover and simmer over low heat for 5 – 10 mins.
  5. Remove from heat and serve warm with roti or rice.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan

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

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
  • Difficulty: easy
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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.

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
  • 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

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
  • Difficulty: easy
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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

Manioca Curry

I am bringing another of my eldest sister’s curry to Fiesta Friday #33 – this time, a manioca curry.
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Today’s featured music group is Junoon. This band was formed in 1990 by Salman Ahmad, the lead guitarist and songwriter of the group. This group were the pioneers of the rock sub-genre, Sufi rock. I first came across this group on MTV through their chart topping song, Sayonee from their fourth album, Azadi (1997). While I could not find the music video of this ground-breaking song on Junoon’s youTube channel, I did find this clip where the group played this song at a concert.

Two of the original band members, lead vocalist Azmat Ali and bassist Brian O’Connell, left the group in 2005 to pursue solo music careers. The next clip that I share here is from Coke Studio Pakistan’s youTube channel which featured this collaborative work of Azmat Ali and Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, the nephew of Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan.

Salman Ahmad, the Junoon founder, has continued the group with different musicians sporadically over the years and has collaborated with other international musicians for several fund-raising efforts. The last clip here is from the Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony concert of 2007.

Hope you enjoyed the music of Junoon and do share which clip you enjoyed the most!
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Manioca Curry

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • Manioca – 1
  • Turmeric – ¼ tsp + ¼ tsp
  • Salt – ¼ tsp + 2 tsp or adjust to taste
  • Garlic cloves – 3, grated
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig
  • Mustard – 1 tsp
  • Onion – 1, chopped
  • Coconut milk – 1 cup
  • Oil – 1 tbsp

Method:

  1. Boil the manioca with ¼ tsp turmeric and ¼ tsp salt. Cut the cooked manioc into smaller pieces and keep aside.
  2. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan. Add the chopped onion and curry leaves, grated cloves, mustard, 2 tsp salt and fry for a min or two. Add the cooked manioc and turmeric. Mix well.
  3. Add the coconut milk and cook till the curry thickens.
  4. Remove from heat and serve warm with rice.

Chickpea Curry

During my recent visit to my eldest sister’s house, I remembered to take photos of a couple of tasty curries she had made for lunch with my phone camera. I am bringing one of her curries, chickpea curry, to the Virtual Vegan Linky Potluck #10.

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Over the last few months, I have enjoyed sharing some Sri Lankan and Indian music together with the recipes. I have decided to continue with a musical journey around the globe with the food recipes. Therefore, as today’s music selection, I am sharing a couple of clips from the two I consider the best Sufi singers of this half-century : Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan (1948 – 1997), also referred to as the Shahenshah (meaning King of Kings) of Qawwali and Abida Parveen, who is also known as the Queen of Sufi music.

During my teen years in the U.A.E, I once accompanied my parents to a concert. When the guest singer, who was introduced as Pakistan’s finest musicians starting singing, I immediately recognized the song as the favourite of my Pakistani friends at my new school and which they kept playing repeatedly during lunch breaks.  The song was Dam Mast Qalandar Mast Mast and it was Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s concert. I admit back then I was not fond of qawwali music and it took a while to grow on me. I think I learnt to appreciate it after hearing them sung at Sufi shrines. The atmosphere creates an enhanced listening experience. It is only fitting that I share here the first qawwali song that I was introduced to.

A few years ago, during a brief trip to Delhi, I took a Sufi heritage tour with India Offtrack. Nirad Grover, part of the company’s core team, travel writer and my guide during the tour, recommended that I listen to Abida Parveen. I did that soon after and I have been impressed with her powerful voice since. This clip has been uploaded on youTube by Epic flo films and includes a summary translation of the lyrics at intervals.

Do share your memory of your first introduction to qawwali, if you enjoy listening to Sufi music. And, do let me know if you try out this chickpea curry!

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Kadalai Curry

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: average
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • Chickpeas – 2 cups, boiled
  • Cashew nuts – 4 or 5
  • Cinnamon – 1” piece
  • Garlic – 3 or 4 cloves
  • Onion – 1
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig
  • Salt – 2 tsp or adjust to taste
  • Turmeric – ¼ tsp
  • Curry powder – 3 tsp or adjust to taste
  • Tamarind juice – ½ cup
  • Potato – 1, boiled and mashed
  • Tomato – 1, chopped
  • Coconut milk – 1 cup
  • Oil

Method:

  1. Lightly fry the cashew nuts with crumbled cinnamon and transfer to grinder.
  2. Add the garlic cloves to the grinder and blend the mix to a coarse paste.
  3. Chop the onion and lightly fry the onion together with curry leaves.
  4. Add the coarse cashew nut paste, salt and turmeric to the pan and mix well.
  5. Add the boiled chickpeas and curry powder to the pan. Mix well.
  6. Then, add the tamarind juice and let the curry cook for a couple of minutes.
  7. Next, add the boiled and mashed potato to the pan and mix.
  8. Add the chopped tomato together with ½ cup of water and cook for a min or two.
  9.  Then, add the coconut milk and cook till the curry consistency is right.
  10. Serve warm with rice or roti.

Sri Lankan Chicken Curry

Re-blogging Indu’s Sri Lankan chicken curry post. Thanks for sharing it on your blog, Indu!

Indu's International Kitchen


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Chicken Curry is one dish that I never get tired of trying out new recipes for!  Chicken is in fact a very safe thing to experiment on – since you can never go wrong with chicken! Any which way you cook it, it always turns out delicious! And those of you who think that ‘a curry is a curry is a curry…’, sorry but I beg to differ!   The different blend of spices as well as the proportion of those spices that goes in a curry is very important and gives the curry its own unique flavor.  And hence Kamala aunty’s chicken curry is so delicious but yet different from grandma’s chicken curry! That is the reason I am always asking folks for their chicken curry recipes! – Hey there is no shame in asking! 🙂

And I thought that there could be so many variations of chicken curry only all across…

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