Tuesday, August 11, 2009
As children we were not great fans of Okra, though amma had tried her best to get us have this nutritionally rich green veggie when we were growing. She never used to deep fry vendakka( which we used to love and insist her to make) with this strong opinion that it loses all its goodness when done so and cooks them the right way to get rid of the sliminess and retains the greenish hue with the final outcome-the ‘crunchy n chewy outsides’ and ‘soft n creamy insides’….
Vendakka Thoran, mingled with that coconutty- spicy, touch; cooked just the way it should be, I’d learnt from Amma…
To serve two;
Get ready with:
Vendakka/Okra- sliced round- a large cup
Coconut oil- a tbsp
Kaduku/Mustard seeds-1/2 tsp
Uzhunnu parippu/urad dal-1/2 tsp
Finely minced shallots- a tsp
Curry leaves- a sprig
To Pulse/Grind Coarse,crumbly, with minimum water
Grated coconut – 2 tbsps
Chilly powder-1/2-3/4 tsp
Jeera /cumin powder- ¼ tsp
Kunjulli/shallots- -2 nos
Wash the Okra well in running water.Trim the edges and cut each to about half a cm wide rounds.
Heat a tbsp of coconut oil in a thick-bottomed wide kadai (preferably a non stick/iron).Splutter the mustard seeds, brown the urad dal and sauté the minced shallots until they acquire a deep brown hue.Throw in the curry leaves.
Add the sliced okra, turning now and then to get rid of the sliminess and cook till half done.If you feel the okra would take time to cook, sprinkle water, close the kadai with a lid, keeping the flame low, for a few minutes. Add the pulsed ingredients and sauté for a few seconds so as to get rid of the raw smell, stirring all the while.Turn them well so as to avoid sticking to the bottom of the kadai, taking care not to turn the pieces mashy. Sprinkle some more water, if too dry, add salt and keep closed, again. Adjust the flame to low-medium, stirring the mix once every 2 minutes enhancing 'even cooking' and the spices to get coated all over slices. Sprinkle water, if necessary and keep the pan closed until just cooked.
Remove from fire and serve hot with boiled rice and curry.