Chettinad Vazhakkai Kurma

Chettinad Vazhakkai Kurma
Today’s recipe is from the Chettinad region. Though this cuisine is well known for its Non-Veg dishes, I love cooking the simple vegetarian dishes as they are so packed with flavors and aroma is enough to make you hungry all over again. This recipe is from my MIL, which she learned from her neighbor, who happens to be a Chettinad Aachi. This kurma is very much different from the Chettinad Vazhakkai Curry which also happens to be the same Aachi’s recipe.

We, the Avant Garde Cookies, are entering the final week of cooking by doing Multi cuisine theme and for this month, we chose Authentic Tamil Cuisine Recipes and without much thinking I chose this recipe as Chettinad cuisine symbolizes a part of Tamilnadu.  I love this kurma very much and like the way how the spices are added and finally thickened by the coconut paste.

Chettinad Vazhakkai Kurma
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 30 Minutes
Serves: 3 to 4

To be ground to a paste:

1. For the paste: Heat a pan with 1/2 tsp oil and roast the ingredients mentioned under to be ground to paste till the aroma of the spices arise taking care not to burn them. Keep aside to cool.
2. In a mixer jar first take the freshly grated coconut, grind it using 3-4 tbsp of water to a fine paste. Transfer to a bowl. Next to the same jar add the roasted ingredients and using enough water, grind to a smooth paste and transfer to another bowl. Both the pastes must be kept separate and added separately in 2 steps.
3. Chop the onions finely. Wash and peel the plantain. First cut them into 2 length wise and further cut each piece into 2 and start dicing them. Immerse in water till use.
4. Heat a pan with oil. Add mustard seeds. when they splutter add cumin seeds, asafetida, curry leaves, onion and sauté till the onion turns pink. Now add the garlic, diced plantain. Sauté well. Close with a lid and let it cook for 5 minutes in its own steam over low flame.
5. Now add 1/2 cup water, turmeric powder, salt and the paste of the roasted ingredients, mix well and close with a lid and let it cook till the plantain become cooked and soft. Stir in between. You can smell the aroma of the spices at this stage.
6. Now is the time to add the coconut paste. Mix well and at this stage if you think the gravy is too thick, add around 1/4 cup water for the coconut paste to get cooked. Cook for another 2-3 minutes.
7. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot as an accompaniment with any sambar rice. We also have it, if any left over with rotis or puris during dinner. Tastes good.


Check out the other Avant Garde Cookies, Anusha, Jayanthi,Kavi, Priya,Roshni and Veena to find out what they are cooking under this theme.

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