Kootu Curry by Shalini Nanda

Kootu curry

  • 3/4 kilo mixed vegetables

Choose from the following or make your own medley:

  • Green beans and their fresh seeds, if available. (Any fresh beans will do. Borlotti beans are delicious made this way)
  • Potatoes
  • Kholrabhi
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Fresh green peas
  • A small tomato or two
  • 3/4 cup of Toor Dal

Slice the green beans and cut all the vegetables into large chunks. Bring 3 – 4 cups of water to a boil and add the vegetables, starting with the slower cooking ones. Add the quick cooking vegetables to the pot at a later stage to ensure they don’t get overcooked.

Cook the toor dal separately, with as little water as possible.

The Masala:

  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp mustard seed
  • 1 tsp coriander seed
  • 4-5 dry red chillies
  • 3 tbsp fresh,grated coconut
  • 2 tbsp uncooked rice
  • 1/2 tsp urad dal
  • 1/2 tsp chana dal
  • 1 tsp ghee (or oil)
  • 1 tbsp thick tamarind extract

Heat a few drops of ghee or oil in a heavy skillet and gently roast the above ingredients except the tamarind. When they’re all roasted, put them back in the heated skillet together and add:

  • 1/2 tsp turmeric1/8 tsp asafoetida (roast separately if you’re using the lump form)

This way, you avoid the risk of scorching these ingredients

Grind them all together into a fine paste, with a little water and the tamarind extract. Mix the ground masala, vegetables, dal, salt to taste and bring to a simmer.

Temper the stew with:

  • 1 – 2 tbsp ghee (or oil)
  • 1 small sprig curry leaves
  • 1 tsp mustard seed
  • 4 – 5 small garlic cloves, crushed with the skin on

Heat the ghee or oil in a small pan, then add the mustard. When the seeds sputter, add the curry leaves and the crushed garlic and sauté until the garlic begins to turn golden brown. Pour over the vegetable stew.

Your kootu curry is ready!

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