Koorka, the much common root vegetable in Kerala, is yet another favourite of a Malayalee which finds its way on the lunch tables in many avatars! Known as Chinese Potatoes in English it has a distinct (yummy) flavour which differentiates from its cousins, arbi (chembu in malayalam; seppan kizhangu in Tamil, taro/colocasia in English)
Somehow I've rarely come across Koorka in TN in the name of 'koorkkan kizhangu' during winter and never outside these two states in the world. (Believe me, I dint get a chance to meet them in China too :))
Now, when you pick up koorka, see to it you select larger ones, having the size of a large gooseberry or a small sized lemon.
Wash well to get rid of the dirt and mud and scrape skin off with the serrated end of your knife. More about this process is explained here by my sis who had attempted making the side dish all on her own(not an easy job, for sure!) while her sis typing this comfortably had played 'over smart', shooting while her mom made the same ;)
Cut them into 1" long pieces as you see here and cook till 'just' done in salted, boiling water.
Now for the major ingredients, crushed shallots and garlic, fresh bits of coconut (thenga kothu) and the curry leaves. Oops! amma , where have those two red chillies gone??
To put it all together, to serve two, you need:
Koorka/Chinese potatoes cut and cooked till half done in salted boiling water- 1 cup
Turmeric powder- a pinch
Salt- to taste
Crush or Pulse together coarsely without water:
Garlic- 2-3 cloves
Dried red chillies- 2
Coconut oil- a tbsp
Mustard seeds- 1/4 tsp
Coconut(copra)bits (thenga kothu)- 2 tbsps
Curry leaves- a sprig
- Heat oil in a non stick pan. Splutter mustard seeds, stir in the bits of coconut until brown followed by the crushed/pulsed ingredients.
- Sauté till that wondddderful aroma spreads all around you.
- Throw in the curry leaves. Mix in the pre-cooked koorka along with the turmeric power.
- Stir- fry without closing the pan, checking salt, tossing now and then until the pieces acquire a golden brown hue and roasted.
- Serve Koorka Mezhukkupuratti warm with rice and curry.
This recipe is off to Kerala Kitchen.