Aviyal makes me nostalgic.It reminds me of my vallyammachi's (grandma's)cooking .I learned this recipe from her, an excellent cook. Though she is a vegetarian she cooks non veg dishes and makes sure they are perfect paying attention to the smell :-) She is the one who brought up my sis and me,when we were kids, since my mom was employed. While preparing the vegetables she would tell us many stories about cooking. She says the taste of the curry starts right from the way you cut the veggies :-) According to her carrots and French beans are all foreign veggies, and adds that her mother never used them in aviyal and other authentic dishes.Even the thought of
Here is the recipe for aviyal ,which is an important item in the Hindu marriage feasts in Kerala. I know that from place to place the recipe varies, though it is such a popular dish. Here is my version, rather Central Travancore version :-)
Snake gourd- 2 pieces that are 2 inches long
Winter Melon(kumbalanga)- A 4inch long piece
Yam (chena)- A 2 inch long piece
Drumsticks- 5-6 two inch long pieces (1 drumstick)
Green chillies- 4-5
Coconut oil -1 +2 Tbsp
Curry leaves-2 Sprigs
Turmeric powder-1 1/2 tsp
Red Chilli powder- 1/2 tsp
Cocnut-grated and half ground- 1/2 cup
Cumin powder/ cumin seeds-1/2 tsp (If you are using powder , a little less)
1.Cut all the veggies into slender pieces
2.Pour 1Tbsp coconut oil in a pan and add all the vegetable pieces along with the green chillies, turmeric and red chilli powder
3.Mix in everything for a couple of minutes.
4. Throw in a sprig of curry leaves and salt.
5.Pour water ,enough to cook the veggies (Don't add too much water, remember that some of the vegetables like winter melon leaves out lot of water) and cover the pan
6. Cook till it is almost done
7.Pour the tamarind juice and cover and cook for a few minutes (If you pour tamarind juice early, the dish will turn dark in color)
8.Add the coconut and cumin to this, mix well, cover and cook for a couple of minutes.
9. Switch off the heat and add smashed shallots and curry leaves along with the 2 Tbsp coconut oil.
10. Mix well and transfer into the serving bowl.
11. Enjoy with rice , sambar and pappad :-)
You could use any vegetable of your choice. Also you could replace the tamarind juice with sour curd or raw mango.
Contributor : Namitha