Sunday, January 11, 2009

1001 Kootu : Mild Coconut - Lentil curries of Tamilnadu

Kootus are mild, thick curries built from boiled lentils and coconut. They are cooked with a variety of dals , though Bengal gram ( Kadalai paruppu), Tuvar dal ( Tuvaram paruppu) and Mung dal ( Pasi paruppu) are the most common.

A kootu without boiled lentils starts resembling a poriyal and a kootu without coconut borders on becoming a dal curry. So cooking a kootu without coconut or lentils is best left to experts.

A Kootu is always mildly flavoured. Too much of spices / chilies are never used. This is why tamarind is rarely used. However, our love for tamarind is so strong that it is sometimes added to cook up a puli kootu (Tamarind kootu).
A kootu cooked with yogurt is a Thayir kootu. The popular Aviyal is a type of thayir kootu. A sweetish pal kootu is cooked up from from milk / coconut milk - and can almost be called a Kuruma. Like most Tamil curries, all kootus can be garnished with a pinch of mustard and curry leaves fried in oil.

Kootus can be eaten not just with rice, but with a variety of flatbreads like chappatis and parathas. Being mild, they also serve as an excellent introduction to south Indian cuisine.

Model recipes
Suganya's Kootu
Zlamushka's poricha kootu
Snake gourd kootu
Laksh's seven vegetable Puli kootu

Nirmala's Soya Palak Kootu
Shriya's Mixed vegetable Kootu

Kamala's Manathakkali Keerai Kootu

Laavanya's Cabbage Kootu with Fennel

Kootus with a twist
Kalai's Keerai Kootu
Onions and tomatoes are rare in Kootus. Here's a recipe with one. And for a double twist, coconut is absent.
Sarada's unusual Cilantro Kootu
Cilantro is rarely used as a vegetable. Here , it takes the place of a spinach.
Maheswari's Ridgegourd Kootu
Another Kootu without coconut
Sarada's Parangikkai paal kootu

Kootu with a triple twist - without either coconut or dal but with Sambar powder !

And that is my last submission for AFAM - coconut, and reposted for MLLA, an event started by Susan.


zlamushka said...

This is absolutely amazing. Would you mind if I linked to that wonderul 1001 Kootu table? I am going to use it as a guidance from now on. I am impressed, please create more :-)

Maheswari said...

Thanks ramki...that's some good work with the table.Very useful too..

Srivalli said...

Thanks for the entry ramki

Food Consultancy / Licensing / Crash Courses

Contact for complete Food consultancy from concept to completion.

Customised one page cookbooks now available for pressure cooker / microwave / mixie / masala & other cooking product manufacturers. Replace bulky recipe books with easy to refer One page cookbooks and watch your sales soar !


Blog Archive

Cooking is fun - Duplication is a pain !

"It is extraordinary to me that the idea of creating thousands of recipes by mixing building blocks takes immediately to people or it doesn’t take at all. .... If it doesn’t grab a person right away, ... you can talk to him for years and show him demos, and it doesn’t make any difference. They just don’t seem able to grasp the concept, simple as it is". ( Thanks Warren Buffett !)

"What's angering about instructions in many cookbooks is that they imply there's only one way to cook a dish - their way. And that presumption wipes out all the creativity." Cook dishes your way - Download  1001 South Indian curries now and learn to cook, not to duplicate ! ( Thanks Robert Pirsig !)

"Recipe purity is no different from racial purity or linguistic purity. It just does not exist. Cuisines are alive and change all the time. What is traditional today was esoteric just a few decades back. So being a 'foodist' is as bad as being a racist !

About Me

My photo
Chennai, Tamilnadu, India
Okay, let me start from the very beginning. 1500 crore years ago, with a Big Bang, the Universe is born. It expands dramatically. Hydrogen forms, contracts under gravity and lights up, forming stars. Some stars explode, dusting space with the building blocks of life. These condense into planets, one of which is Earth. Over time, self replicating molecules appear, multiply and become more complex. They create elaborate survival machines (cells, plants, animals). A variety of lifeforms evolve. Soon, humans arise, discover fire, invent language, agriculture and religion. Civilisations rise and fall. Alexander marches into India. Moguls establish an empire. Britain follows. Independence. Partition. Bloodshed. The license raj is in full sway. I'm born. India struggles to find its place. Liberalisation. The Internet arrives! I move from Tirupur to Chennai. Start a company. Expand into Malaysia, Singapore and the Middle East. Poof! Dot com bust. Funding dries up. Struggle. Retire. Discover the joy of cooking, giving, friendships and the pleasures of a simple life. Life seems less complicated. Pizza Republic, Pita Bite and Bhojan Express bloom !

Looking for Treatment?