Thursday, March 10, 2011

Vazhakkai Podimas / Grated Plantain Curry..

Plantain is the raw form of banana before its ripe stage and this tropical vegetable is extensively used in the tambram cuisine. It is one vegetable where all its parts can be used to prepare some or the other dish. Like the plantain stem called as vazhathandu can be made as curry, the flower also known as vazhapoo can be used to make kootu, stir-fry or fritters. The plantain leaf or vazha elai is used in South India to spread the feast on it during festivals and other occasions.
One of the recipes I'm going to share is the grated plantain curry. This dish is served in most of the tambram weddings and other important occasions and is one of my favourites. Here it is:


Plantains- 4 big ones

For tempering:

Mustard seeds- 1 Tsp

Urad dhall- 1 Tbsp

Dry red chilly- 1

Asafoetida/Hing- 1/4 tsp

Curry leaves - a few

Coconut/ Veg Oil- 1 Tbsp

Grated coconut- 1 Tbsp

Green chillies- 1 or 2 according to spice levels

Lemon juice- 1Tbsp

Step by step process of making the curry.


1.Steam the plantains with the skin on either in the pressure cooker or a steamer. I usually keep it on a plate above the rice in the cooker and cook it for 2 to 3 whistles. Do not overcook it.

2.Allow it to cool and peel the skin off and grate the plantains using a grater. You can also make it into small crumbles using your fingers if you want to avoid grating.

3.Pulse the green chillies and coconut pieces together a few times without any water.

4.Heat oil in and once hot add the mustard seeds. When it starts to splutter, add the urad dhall, dry red chilly, asafoetida, curry leaves and the coconut green chilly mixture.

5.Saute for a few minutes and then add the grated plantains and salt.

6.Cover and cook for a few minutes till the plantains are soft and are mixed well with the tempering.

7.Switch off the heat and add the lemon juice and mix well.

8.Serve with hot rice, rasam or any kuzhambu of your choice. I usually prefer some kind of vetha kuzhambu along with this podimas and had made karuvadam vethakuzhambu.

A typical tambram meal with paruppu, hot steaming rice, ghee , karuvadam kuzhambu and vazhakkai podimas! Krishnarpanam!

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