Kootu Curry – Vegetable and Bean Curry

Koottu Curry - Vegetable and Chick Pea Dish For Sadya
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This is koottu Curry, more popular in the Malabar  region than in south Kerala.  But it still  has a  prominent place  in   the  Sadya menu all over.   Koottu curry literally means  a  curry made  with  a mix, and  as  such has  many different  regional  interpretations.  My  dad  makes  one  with potatoes, <mystery vegetable here> , and  tomatoes.  I  am  not sure how  he  does  it , as  he  makes  it  only when he  has  complete  freedom  in the kitchen  –  in  other words  when  none  of  us are  butting in 😉 .

Koottu Curry - Vegetable and Chick Pea Dish For Sadya

His interpretation of this dish is  different  from mom’s , but none  the  less  delicious.  His  version is  also vastly different from the  koottu Curry  served  in sadya.   The  sadya  version  is made    with a one or  more  starchy vegetables  and  a bean like chick peas, or  cow peas. It is  neither an “ozhichu curry”   meaning  that the is no gravy to pour, it     nor is  it a   ‘thoran’ or  a  kind of  stir  fry.

The  traditional  south Indian sadya  for  religious  and  other  occasions is vegetarian. It is  not  surprising  to find  many lentil/bean based dishes on  the  sadya  menu as these  are the main  source of  protein.  Beans can  also be very varied  in terms  of  taste and textures  not  to mention delicious.

I like  these  kind  of   dishes as there is  a  nice  balance of  protein,  minerals  and  fiber here. If  you have  read  some  of  my posts you might  realize  that  I tend  to prefer  easy meals.   So definitely a  dish like this, that can  be served  with  a  bowl of  rice  or  some  flat  breads  and  call  it a meal, makes me very happy.

Koottu curry is  by no means  the  only  bean  and vegetable combination   in  the sadya menu.  There  is a  sweeter  version  Pumpkin Erisseri ,  and a  very mellow one olan .  There  is a  common theme in all these  3  dishes – a  vegetable usually in the  gourd  family a bean  and  coconut.   Surprisingly these  three  combine  to  give  very different  flavors  to  each dish .

With there being a wide  variety of  bean  dishes   in the Indian  cuisine it is  not  surprising that  people have  their favorites.  For  my family it is Parippu  and  not Koottu Curry.  So  I make  this  rarely  that  too usually for Onam  and  Vishu.

Making Koottu Curry - Vegetable and Chick Pea Dish

So here are the steps to this  koottu curry.

  • Cook the vegetables  with a  little  salt  and  turmeric.
  • Add   the  spiced  coconut  paste  and  black  chickpeas.
  • Mix  cook a  little
  • Season  with the  roasted   coconut  and  spices !

Sounds  simple  doesn’t it ? It  indeed  is.  The  layering  of  flavors is  what   gives  it  the characteristic   smoky, spicy  taste.

Give  it a  try, and  of course  don’t  hesitate  to  experiment  –  I am sure  you   too will find  some  bean and  veggie  combos  to your  liking .

Kootu Curry For Sadya
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
30 mins
 

A sadya  dish  with  vegetables  and   black  chick peas.

Cuisine: Indian
Author: Syama
Ingredients
  • 1 Raw plantain Medium sized
  • 1 C Elephant Yam Cubed
  • 1 C Black Chickpeas Cooked
  • 1 Tsp Chilly Powder To Taste
  • 1/2 Tsp Turmeric powder
  • Few Curry Leaves
  • Salt To taste
To Grind To Paste
  • 1 C Grated Coconut
  • 1 Tsp Whole Pepper Corns
  • 1/2 Tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1/2 Tsp Minced Ginger Optional
To season
  • 1/2 Tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 2 - 3 Dry Red Chilies
  • 1 Sprig Curry Leaves
  • 1/2 - 3/4 C Grated Coconut
  • 5 Whole Black Pepper Crushed
  • 1 Tbsp Coconut oil
Instructions
  1. Cut the  vegetables  are  into  1/2 inch  thick pieces.  Add to the pan along with 1 C water  a pinch of  salt  and   turmeric . Cook covered  over  medium  heat  for  5  to 10 minutes.   

  2. While  the  vegetables are cooking, add all the  ingredients for  grinding  to  a  blender  bowl and  grind  to a  smooth paste  adding a  few  tablespoons of water as  necessary .

  3. Add the  chickpeas to the vegetables. Check the  vegetables  to see  if  they are  almost  cooked  through.  If  needed  cook for a  few  more  minutes.  Add  the  coconut paste mix and   adjust  salt. 

  4. Reduce  heat to low  and  cook  for a  few  minutes until the raw smell goes away.

  5. In a  small  frying  pan heat 1 tbsp oil. When hot  add the  mustard  seeds,  curry leaves,  and  red chilies.   Once the  mustard  seeds  crackle  add  the  grated  coconut. Stir  fry  the coconut until it turns uniformly brown.  Add  the  crushed pepper, stir  and  turn off the  heat. 

  6. Check the vegetables  to make  sure  that  it is  cooked  through. Taste and  adjust  salt if  needed.  If needed continue cooking the vegetables for a  few  more minutes. Pour  the   coconut  seasoning  over the  cooked  vegetables and  turn off the heat.

  7. Mix  just  before  serving. 

Recipe Notes
  • You could add  a  few  pearl onions  while  grinding  or  while  frying the  seasonings.
  • Sometimes elephant yams take  long to cook .  
  • Though  black chickpeas are the most often used bean in this recipe you could substitute cow peas or  pigeon peas.

 

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Koottu Curry - Vegetable and Chick Pea Dish

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