Rasavalli Kilangu Kool

Today is a very special day at my home. It is my mother’s birthday.

After quite some time away from the kitchen, I decided to bake something today and as my mother is a snacker, made a vegan date and walnut loaf and some granola bars.

The recipe I am sharing today is a special treat from Jaffna that my mother made earlier this week. This dish is a special breakfast or dessert dish from north Sri Lanka and made from rasavalli kilangu or purple yam (dioscorea alata).

purple yam

purple yam

 Rasavalli Kilangu Kool/ Purple Yam Porridge

Time taken: 20 mins

Serves 3

rasavalli kilanguIngredients:

  • Rasavalli kilanku/ purple yam – 1 small
  • Thin coconut milk – 1 cup
  • Sugar – 2 or 3 tbsp
  • Salt, a pinch

Method:

  1. Clean and peel the yam and then chop it up roughly.
  2. Cook the yam with 3 cups of water. Once the water dries up, lightly mash the boiled yam.
  3. Add 1 cup of thin coconut milk.
  4. Add 2-3 tbsp of sugar and a pinch of salt to the porridge.
  5. Let the porridge simmer till the liquid  thickens.
  6. Serve warm.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

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Cassava Thuvaiyal

Today’s guest post is by Krishanthy Kamalraj, who has previously shared her recipe for murukku on this blog. We have another of her lovely snack recipes, with a short intro about the dish from her, today.

Cassava Thuvaiyal

This is somewhat different from Cassava curry. Those days, people in Jaffna usually had cassava plants in their home garden for their own consumption. My grandmother used to make this dish, when we wanted a spicy and filling snack. She dug out immature cassava yam from the garden and made very delicious cassava thuvaiyal for us.

Ingredients

  • 1 medium size immature cassava yam
  • 2-4 dry red chilies
  • ¼ cup small onions
  • ¼ cup grated coconut
  • Mortar and pestle or Mixer or grinding stone
  • Salt to taste

Recipe

1. Thoroughly wash cassava yam and peel the skin.

Cassava2. Cut the yam into small cubes.

Cassava 23. Put the cut cassava pieces in a cooking pan.

4. Add ¼ cup of water into the pan and cook well over medium heat.

5. When cassava has been cooked well (able to slightly smash cassava pieces with spatula), remove from heat.

6. In a mortar, add salt and red chilies. Pound well until it becomes a paste.

chilli paste7. Add cooked cassava and pound well with pestle until it mixes well with chili paste.

8. Add cleaned small onions into the mixture and pound well.

9. When the mixture has reached the consistency to make small balls, take out  from mortar.

10. Using hand, make small balls of the mixture.

11. Now cassava thuvaiyal is ready to serve.

Cassava thuvaiyal

Recipe source: Krishanthy Kamalraj.

Pudalangai Kulambu

Today’s curry recipe is one of the dishes that I like a lot – pudalangai kulambu or snake gourd curry.

Pudalangai Kulambu

Time taken: 30 mins

Serves 2 or 3

Pudalangai KulambuIngredients:

  • Snake gourd – 1 cup, chopped
  • Onion – ½ , chopped
  • Fenugreek seeds – 2 tsp
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig
  • Tamarind – ½ cup
  • Coconut milk – ½ cup
  • Curry powder – 1 tsp
  • Salt, to taste
  • Low fat oil – 2 tbsp

Method:

  1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan and fry the onion and fenugreek seeds for a couple of minutes.
  2. Then, add another tbsp oil to the pan and add the chopped snake gourd and curry leaves. Continue frying for a few minutes.
  3. Add the tamarind and milk to the pan, together with the curry powder and salt to taste. Let the curry cook for about 10 – 15 mins over medium heat.
  4. Remove pan from stove when the gravy thickens.
  5. Serve warm with rice or pittu.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

Murukku

Today’s guest blogger is Krishanthy Kamalraj. An agriculture graduate and a former staff member of UNDP Sri Lanka’s Transition Recovery Programme, Krishanthy sent me a couple of recipes this week. As one of the recipes is for Pongal, I am happy to share her murukku recipe today. 

Kadalaima Murukku- Channa Dhal flour murukku

This snack has a prominent place in all Tamil celebrations. There are several types of murukku available and they differ based on ingredients. Today I have chosen Channa Dhal flour and Atta flour murukku.

Time taken: 1 hour

Serves 10 to 15 persons

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup roasted channa dhal flour
  • ½ cup steamed wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • 2-4 dried red chili
  • 1 teaspoon of Omam (Carom seeds/ Ajwain) powder
  • 2 teaspoon margarine or olive oil
  • ½ cup water
  • Salt as needed
  • Oil to fry
  • Murukku ural/ mould

Method:

  1. Soak the Omam powder in 1/8 cup of water for 30 minutes.
  2. In a mixing bowl, take 1 cup of roasted Channa Dhal flour and ½ of steamed Atta flour and add together.
  3. Take cumin and dry chili and grind it well until it becomes a fine powder. Add this to the flour mixture in the bowl and mix well.
  4. Filter the Omam water and gradually add to flour mixture.
  5. Then add salt and margarine to the flour mixture.
  6. Gradually add water to the mixture and make very soft, non sticky dough (same as the consistency level for string hopper dough)

murukku dough2

murukku in the mould

7. Insert clove shape disc into bottom of murukku ural and add small portion of dough into the murukku ural and press softly to make coil shaped murukku. Note: If the dough is not soft enough (due to not enough water), it will feel hard to press the ural. Add little bit of water and make the dough soft. This will result in very soft murukku.

squeezing the murukku

murukku dough

8. In a pan take required amount of oil and heat it over medium heat.
9. Once the oil is hot enough, transfer the pressed murukku into the oil.

frying murukku10. Once the murukku is cooked well on both side and has turned light golden brown in colour, take it out from the pan and drain the grease using paper towel.

Murukku

11. Keep them in an air tight container and serve whenever you feel like eating crispy, spicy snack.

Recipe source: Krishanthy Kamalraj.

Kurakkan Pittu

Kurakkan, also known as ragi, is a type of millet that is gluten-free and diabetic friendly. At home, the most common and popular form of pittu is the rice flour pittu. Occasionally, my mother makes the atta flour pittu or the kurakkan flour pittu.

Below is the simple recipe for making kurakkan flour pittu. The rice flour pittu and atta flour pittu easily blend with any curries and is a convenient meal to prepare. Kurakkan, however, has a distinctive taste that I find does not easily merge with just any curry. As such, I prefer to eat kurakkan pittu simply sprinkled with coconut and jaggery.

Kurakkan Pittu

Time taken: 25 mins

Serves 2

Kurakkan pittuIngredients:

  • Kurakkan flour/ ragi – 1 cup
  • Coconut – ¼ cup, freshly scraped
  • Jaggery – 2 or 3 tbsp, finely chopped
  • Salt – pinch

Method:

  1. Add a pinch or two of salt to the kurakkan flour.
  2. Stir in boiled and slightly cooled water until the flour mixtures becomes coarse and grainy.
  3. Steam the kurakkan pittu for 10 mins.
  4. Mix the freshly scraped coconut and chopped jaggery into the steamed pittu and serve hot.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

Thuvaram Paruppu Koottu

Re-posting recipe: Today’s recipe is from my great-grandmother, as remembered and occasionally replicated by my mother.

Thuvaram Paruppu Koottu

Time taken: 1 hour, plus soaking time of dal about 3 – 4 hours

Serves 4

Thuvaram Paruppu Koottu

Ingredients:

  • Toor dal/ Thuvaram paruppu – ½ cup
  • Onion – ¼ + ½
  • Garlic – 2 + 2
  • Cumin powder – ½ tsp + ½ tbsp
  • Fennel powder – ½ tsp
  • Asafoetida – pinch + pinch
  • Salt – ½ tsp + more, to taste
  • Oil – 1 tsp + for deep-fry+ 1 ½ tbsp
  • Fenugreek – 1 tsp
  • Tomato – 1 big or 2 small
  • Dried red chillies – 3
  • Coriander powder – 1 tbsp
  • Grated coconut – 3 tbsp
  • Turmeric powder – ½  tsp
  • Pepper – 1 tsp
  • Tamarind extract – ½ cup (thin)
  • Water – ½ cup + ½ cup (optional)

Method:

  1. Soak the toor dal for 3 – 4 hours.
  2. Chop up ¼ onion and 2 garlic cloves and fry them in 1 tsp oil in a pan.
  3. Add ½ tsp cumin powder, ½ tsp fennel powder and a pinch of asafoetida to the pan. When the spices combine and their aroma starts coming out, add ½ tsp salt.
  4. Add the toor dal to the pan and mix well and quickly remove from heat.
  5. Grind the toor dal mixture, without water or just a little so that it can be made into a slab.
  6. Steam the slab of spiced toor dal.
  7. Cut the steamed block of toor dal into pieces and deep fry.
  8. Make a spice paste by grinding the scraped coconut and chopped chillies with 1 tbsp coriander powder, ½ tbsp cumin powder, ½ tsp turmeric powder, 1 tsp pepper powder and a pinch of asafoetida.
  9. Heat 1 to 1 ½ tbsp oil in a pan and fry the chopped onion (½ onion), 2 garlic cloves and the fenugreek seeds.
  10. When you get the aroma of the fried onion and garlic, add the spice paste, mix well and fry.
  11. Add the chopped tomatoes and ½ cup of water and let the tomatoes cook.
  12. Once the tomatoes are cooked, add the fried pieces of toor dal chunks and ½ cup of thin tamarind extract.
  13. Cook for about 10 – 15 minutes on low heat. If you prefer more gravy in your curry, add ½ cup of water.
  14. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

Murungaikai Curry

Re-posting recipe: This is my grandmother’s recipe, as remembered and replicated by my mother. For my mother’s recipe, check out this post.

Drumstick curry

Cooking time – 25 minutes

Serves 3

DSC09686

Ingredients:

  • Drumstick/ Murungai – 1
  • Potato – 1 large
  • Onion – ½ medium sized
  • ¼ fresh Coconut ~ ½ cup of scraped fresh coconut
  • Curry powder – 1 tbsp, can add another 1/2 tbsp for more spiciness
  • Salt to taste

 Method:

  1. Cut the drumstick into 2’’ pieces and chop up the potato and onion.
  2. To the scraped fresh coconut, add some water and squeeze out the first coconut milk and keep aside. Reuse the coconut flakes and squeeze out the second milk by adding some water. If you don’t like to squeeze out the coconut milk by hand, simply use a blender and strain out the first and second milk. An alternative is to use ready-made coconut milk but the different consistencies expected in this dish will not be there. The first milk is richer in consistency and fats while the second milk is thinner in consistency.
  3. In a sauce pan, add four cups of water to coconut milk obtained the second time – the second coconut milk.
  4. Add the cut vegetables (drumstick, potato and onion) to the pan as well as the chilli powder and cook the vegetables.
  5. Once the potato and drumstick pieces are cooked, add the reserved first coconut milk and salt and let it simmer for five minutes before taking off the heat.
  6. Serve hot with rice or pittu or stringhoppers.

A slight variation in my great grandmother’s drumstick curry recipe is that she did not add potatoes  to the drumsticks. Just before taking the curry off the heat, she lightly fried some chopped onion, dried red chillies and fennel seeds in a separate pan and added the tempered seasonings to the curry. This gives a nice aroma and flavour to the dish.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.